The interviewer left the best to the last: “Basically,’ he said, ‘we want you to develop a new event management company.”
The old event management company, Life Leisure Events Management (LLEM), had been in operation for 24 years and had managed some of South Australia’s iconic events including the City Bay Fun Run, the World BMX Championships and the opening of the Heysen Tunnel. It had even come up with the Come ‘n’ Try brand and activation that made such a contribution to introducing the community to a variety of non traditional sports and, ultimately, increasing club membership. It’s why my 14 year old got into sailing.
Significantly, LLEM was also the custodian of the ‘Life. Be in it’ brand, message and associated events in South Australia.
But no one knows this. In fact, LLEM doesn’t even have a web site!
As it turned out the challenge was to rebrand and reposition LLEM. But the challenge wasn’t limited to a new name and web site, it was about redefining our DNA and growing it through the five key elements of our organisation: culture, communication, people, operations and money.
The first thing we did was workshop our Critical Success Factor and list then from strongest to weakest. Combined with stakeholders surveys and financial and operations reviews we gained a really good picture of our current health.
Our business objectives were based around those five key elements: creating and delivering the brand, developing customers, increasing the capabilities and skills of our people, optimising operational systems and planning how to achieve long term financial security.
It was clear that we couldn’t sustain and grow the business by relying on the ‘Life. Be in it’ brand and associated events. So where else could we take our skills and experience and passions?
On the face of it we were experts in logistics and resource management but when we dug deeper we realised we were also pretty good at community engagement and asset management. The new recruit brought experience in marketing and communication, particularly in the sports and recreation sector and we even had a talented graphic designer!
Naturally we would continue to leverage on the ‘Life. Be in it’ brand and extending our event management capabilities into brand experiences, product launches, conferences and festivals made sense. By extension, we felt there was an opportunity to create and deliver the ‘active’ in ‘brand activations.’
Finally, we wanted to leverage on our sport, marketing and sponsorship experience in a city where there are no sports marketing specialists. Well, none that were immediately obvious…which is half the battle.
Our marketing plan clearly identified the targets for each of our four services and we set about the arduous task of building a segmented data base to whom we ‘launched’ Enventive via a snail mail pack of letter, brochure and business card followed up with a branded email with links.
To maintain salience we have planned monthly newsletters and a podcast series of interviews with movers and shakers around town – Enventive people – and, of course we will definitely leverage on a variety of social media platforms.
Our communication strategy is all about providing content that makes a difference to the lives of our data base. Fulfilling their real life needs is the engagement holy grail!