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Brands & Branding and Private Labels Case Study

Case Title:

Boston Red Sox- The Brand and its Future

Publication Year : 2006

Authors: Doris John

Industry: Sports and Sports Related


Case Code: BBP0058C

Teaching Note: Available

Structured Assignment: Available

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The Boston Red Sox Team (Red Sox) was a Major League Baseball team located in Boston, Massachusetts. For over a period of 86 years, the team had not won the World Series. This long spell was referred to as the ‘Curse of the Bambino’. This curse was believed to be associated with the trading off of the team’s star player, Babe Ruth, nicknamed ‘Bambino’, who had led the team to win three World Series in 1915, 1916 and 1918. Victory had evaded the Red Sox, ever since their 1918 win and in each of the following matches, the team had a close brush with success despite fielding a good play. Each year, the fans hoped that their team would win. During these years, the fans empathised with the team and a strong emotional bond was built between them. This seemed to have made this losing team into a premier sports brand.

In October 2004, the Boston Red Sox Team won the Baseball World Series. Although the fans were excited about the long awaited victory, marketing pundits debated the brand’s future. They questioned how the fans would accept the fact that they had a championship team. However, some others argued that the brand would continue to remain viable because it was built upon many factors that had nothing to do with championships. The case provides for discussion on the future of the Red Sox brand and what options the management had to enhance the fan experience.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To discuss strategies of a sports franchise
  • To discuss the future of the Red Sox brand.

Keywords : Red Sox, Brands & Branding Case Study, Sports franchise, Curse of the Bambino, US, Baseball team, branding, emotional marketing, Babe Ruth, sports fans, Fenway Park, Boston, Major League Baseball, World Series Baseball

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