Date of Award


Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (Research)


Cork Institute of Technology

First Advisor

Emmett Coffey


There has been an increased interest from academies, PR professionals and industry professionals in the importance of effective and media in the role of sports PR. This study aims to contribute to the understanding of how PR strategies are utilised within the sports industry, concentrating on its effectiveness on an emerging sports brand such as that of Connacht Rugby.

A qualitative research design was chosen, and the primary methods used to gather the data were semi-structured interviews with communication Professionals from the PR industry and key staff members of Connacht Rugby all who play a role within the PR strategy of the organisation. All interviewees were chosen due to their insight and knowledge pertaining to the topic. The interviews are supported with a range of secondary research forms to use as a comparative research method and increase the validity of the overall study.

Through the research process, the researcher learned of the exposure that arises for sporting organisation’s from embracing PR strategies and social media strategies, and also the benefits of social media for the overall PR industry.

It can be concluded that there are both advantages and disadvantages to these industries adopting certain PR strategies such as social media; and while some have progressed to implement it successfully, many Public Relation Practitioners as well as the sport organisations are in the process of learning how to practice public relations strategies and social media activities to the best effect. The sports industry is still developing PR strategies and learning with the platfonns of social media, and those who are tuned in and observing this new phenomenon are beginning to reap the rewards.

Access Level