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Future Business Leaders Committed to Changing the World for the Better
Scholar Spotlight
Srilekhya Vennamaneni
Srilekhya Vennamaneni ‘23 hails from Hyderabad, India and is pursuing a double major in business administration and public policy. Her professional interests include working at the intersection of government and business to take renewable energy to off-grid communities internationally. Srilekhya decided to be a part of the Kenan Scholars Program to meet a like-minded community […]
Scholar Spotlight
Srilekhya Vennamaneni
Srilekhya Vennamaneni ‘23 hails from Hyderabad, India and is pursuing a double major in business administration and public policy. Her professional interests include working at the intersection of government and business to take renewable energy to off-grid communities internationally. Srilekhya decided to be a part of the Kenan Scholars Program to meet a like-minded community […]
Historically, the sportswear industry has paid little attention to issues of sustainability. However, today’s consumers are increasingly incorporating sustainability into their purchasing decisions. Sportswear firms have begun to confront these converging realities with sustainable sportswear products. For these new products to maximally succeed, marketers must apply sustainable marketing best practices. This thesis provides a first look at developing these principals through the use of an experimental consumer perception survey featuring twelve unique stimulus advertisements varying across four brands and three constructs: utilitarian, sustainable assertive, and sustainable gentle product claims. The findings of this research suggest that utilitarian claims, in comparison to sustainable claims, promote higher perceptions of sportswear product quality. Assertive claims exhibit a significant negative impact on consumers’ willingness to recommend sustainable sportswear. Finally, the combination of brand, product, and claim add a complexity to sustainable sportswear introduction that must be met with an intimate understanding of consumers. Author: Christopher Dean Karras, Class of 2020
Advisor: Katrijn Gielens, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School
Historically, the sportswear industry has paid little attention to issues of sustainability. However, today’s consumers are increasingly incorporating sustainability into their purchasing decisions. Sportswear firms have begun to confront these converging realities with sustainable sportswear products. For these new products to maximally succeed, marketers must apply sustainable marketing best practices. This thesis provides a first look at developing these principals through the use of an experimental consumer perception survey featuring twelve unique stimulus advertisements varying across four brands and three constructs: utilitarian, sustainable assertive, and sustainable gentle product claims. The findings of this research suggest that utilitarian claims, in comparison to sustainable claims, promote higher perceptions of sportswear product quality. Assertive claims exhibit a significant negative impact on consumers’ willingness to recommend sustainable sportswear. Finally, the combination of brand, product, and claim add a complexity to sustainable sportswear introduction that must be met with an intimate understanding of consumers. Author: Christopher Dean Karras, Class of 2020
Advisor: Katrijn Gielens, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

Future Business Leaders Committed to

CHANGING THE WORLD

for The Better