How to market a sports event…

Step One – Segment your market! Identify potential participants who you want to target and think about the kind of messages you want to convey to them to encourage them to attend your club or a particular session.

Step Two – Budget! The quality and quantity of the marketing material you are able to produce will largely depend on the budget you have available to promote your campaign. Approach local businesses to sponsor your efforts.

Step Three – Bring your campaign to life!

  • Keep tone and language simple and straight forward
  • Use photographs that the target audience will relate to (don’t necessarily use sporty images, for example, you could use pictures of social interaction and people having fun)
  • Use bright, appealing colours that stand out and modern clear fonts
  • Include incentives, for example, first session free when you attend five sessions
  • Don’t be too pushy, make sure your communications are inviting, encouraging and welcoming

Step Four – Getting your campaign seen & heard!

  • Engage others in your campaign and identify coaches and leaders for your sessions and communicate to them their important role with your campaign – you need to get their buy-in and support from the outset
  • Campaign branding – you could produce specific branding for your new project or alternatively ‘piggy back’ on national campaigns and make use of their branding
  • Campaign poster or leaflet – consider the production of a campaign poster or leaflet for placement in key high footfall venues
  • E-mail newsletters – Do you have databases? If so you could target them with a newsletter or e-mail about your campaign
  • Website – regularly update content or add pages to your existing website about your campaign
  • Social Networking – create and maintain Facebook and Twitter pages. Word of Mouth advertising is one of the strongest forms of marketing and communication available to you

Step Five – Remember to ask them what they think! It’s always a good idea to gain feedback on the sessions that you provide so that you can constantly monitor your delivery and also look to make improvements where necessary. Get your participants to complete a short questionnaire.

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