Friday evening (7 February) was big event in Cork.
- the annual Cork Chamber dinner in City Hall.
Biggest business networking & consuming event of 2014 for successful business people.
About 1,000 leaders under one roof (maybe 17% women this year, I'm told).
We're all on the same side when it comes to networking - OK?
We all know it's essential. You must go to some gatherings, put yourself about, get your name out there, be open for business, even conspiracies (collaborations). You might even (if you've had a good year) take a whole table & invite your most important suppliers, contacts & people you owe a favour to - or want one from.
Cork is not a big place internationally
but it's Ireland's second city. It wasn't a shock to find out Micheál Martin (head of the main opposition party - note spelling), Simon Coveney (cabinet minister) & Kathleen Lynch (minister for disability, equality & mental health) were among guests.
Wedged in between sponsors Bord Gáis & IBM was a very interesting company. A local 'marketing & PR' company based in Ballincollig, co- founded by Pat Kierans. H+A were in good company.
Why would H+A sponsor such an event?
[I'm not privy to insider information, so what follows is simply a guess.]
- To get ahead of their competitors FuzionPR, Cameo Communications, Springboard, Hopkins, Bullseye, Lucy O'Donoghue, Casey Communications, Moran Communication, Kearney Melia - even FleishmanHillard (no shortage of PR & Marketing companies in Cork)
- To win friends & influence people (obviously)
- To launch a fresh campaign campaign to up the profile of the H+A brand.
- Several other reasons.
Being a sponsor can be a good investment for your business.
Or it can be a waste.
You'll waste your money if you don't sponsor the event as part of a wider online & offline plan. Doing it as a status thing is wasteful. No strong brand - or brand hoping to become strong - would do that.
How can you leverage your sponsorship investment?
That (in jargon terms) is the question...
- More meaningful marketing would be missing a trick if it didn't sponsor events.
- There are even business owners who sponsor good causes without integrating that investment of time & money with other marketing.
[Really silly. I'd go so far as to say that's leaving down your employees, suppliers, investors & customers.]
There's a lot to think about in Sponsorship.
Reconsider your Sponsorship investment today. Plan it well & meaningfully.
We'll return to this topic again soon.
PS: Maybe H+A would be kind enough to give us an insight into their Sponsorship Plan - cheeky, cheeky...