Under starter's orders for the best yet...
ABP Southampton engaged Carswell Gould to manage the press and public relations for the second-ever ABP Southampton Half Marathon and 10k, to build on the success of the 2015 race event.
This year, the event was extended over a weekend, April 23-24, and in addition to the half marathon and 10k races, the event included the ABP Schools’ Challenge and Family Fun Run.
Carswell Gould’s experienced team compiled and trail-blazed a targeted public relations campaign to ensure that ABP Southampton was promoted at all times as the second-time headline sponsor, highlighting the company’s commitment to its community.
Carswell Gould supported race organisers, Marafun UK, to help it achieve maximum entry numbers for all race events and to clearly promote the success of the weekend, with the objective of positioning the event as one of the most exciting fixtures in the region’s sporting calendar.
Carswell Gould’s specialists devised a PR campaign with the aim of gaining maximum exposure for the event beforehand, during the event and afterwards.
Preparing a winning campaign
Carswell Gould’s pre-promotion work involved regular contact with regional print, online and broadcast media to supply race event news and interesting press releases featuring some of those taking part, in a bid to whet the media’s appetite for the event weekend, to provide maximum coverage for the public and to ensure the attendance of both.
Carswell Gould also directed press photography throughout the campaign and sourced media interview opportunities, pitching into key outlets such as BBC Solent.
Race information packs and invitations to the ABP VIP media room, which was managed by Carswell Gould, were prepared and distributed.
The team also produced the copy for the Daily Echo’s supplement editorials, including a welcome from the port director, and gained full press attendance through a media call invitation and telephone follow-ups.
During the race weekend, a team of eight ensured each journalist, photographer and videographer gained the interviews they wanted, including engagement with the port manager, who was interviewed by all key media and presented the winners with prizes.
The CG team was on hand to respond to event audio, photo and footage requests; to direct press photographers along the route, and to manage the awards ceremony following the ABP Half and 10k races.
Follow-up PR included providing all media with material such as sound bites, photos and videos; sending out the post-event press release which contained quotes from key VIPs and attendees; and writing a port feature story about the ABP team’s success.
Crossing the finish line
The event attracted huge media interest and coverage, resulting in 175 related articles in regional print and online, plus six pieces of broadcast coverage, with a potential value of over £294k and a potential reach of 9.6m people.
The main coverage hits were BBC South Today and ITV Meridian post-event and Newsquest South’s papers for St Mary’s coverage; three Southern Daily Echo supplements; interviews on Radio Solent and news bulletins on Heart FM, Capital FM and Wave 105 FM.
Interview opportunities were secured with BBC Solent, Heart FM, Capital FM, BBC South Today, ITV Meridian and That’s Solent TV.
The ABP Southampton Half Marathon and 10k website http://www.abpsouthamptonhalf.co.uk features race results, a round-up of the weekend’s activities and details of the next big race event in 2017.
Press and public relations
Social media management