It has been a wonderful summer of Hurling and on the eve of the All Ireland Final between Galway and Limerick Sport for Business caught up with each of the Championship sponsors to see what the year has been like for them…
Here is what we found out from Sorcha Fennell Sheehan of Bord Gais Energy…
How has 2018 been for you as a sponsor?
It has been a hugely exciting summer both on and off the pitch. 2018 marked Bord Gáis Energy’s second year sponsor of the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship, and tenth as title sponsors of the U-21 All-Ireland Hurling Championship. Our focus is on giving our customers unmissable GAA experiences through the Bord Gáis Energy Rewards Club.
We started the season by creating the pop-up Bord Gáis Energy Cupán Tae Café in Dublin and hosting a very special evening for Rewards Club customers with Marty Morrisey, Joe Canning and Alan Cadogan. There we also announced our sponsorship of The Marty Squad for the 2018 season.
This summer we’ve hosted hundreds of customers at our Cupán Tae events at matches around the country. We’ve given kids the chance to wave their team onto the pitch as official Bord Gáis Energy flag bearers and attend #HurlingToTheCore training sessions with our Bord Gáis Energy ambassadors.
One of the highlights for us this year was the Bord Gáis Energy Rewards Tour of Páirc Uí Chaoimh with Ciarán Carey and Diarmuid O’Sullivan. Our customers experienced the stadium from a player’s perspective as Diarmuid and Ciarán guided them through the tunnels, dressing rooms, media facilities and the hallowed turf of Páirc Uí Chaoimh.
So, all in all, it’s been a busy season but the response we’ve had from customers has been phenomenal. We’ve engaged more of our customers through GAA Rewards in 2018 than ever before and this is delivering for our customers and the business.
Hurling has had a golden summer in terms of games and glory. How does that reflect on the brand?
It has been a fantastic summer of hurling. The quality of games, the excitement and the buzz around the Championship is wonderful for everyone involved – the players, teams, sponsors, GAA and of course hurling fans.
As I mentioned earlier, Bord Gáis Energy is all about giving our customers unmissable GAA experiences. The 2018 Championship has been just that – unmissable.
We’re proud to be in a position to be able to give our customers access to the things they are passionate about and the Championship is certainly delivering this year!
Did the shorter but more intense season work for you?
It’s been a hectic few months, but it has worked for us. The round-robin format and increase in games meant more exposure for the brand and more opportunity to engage with our customers.
It wasn’t just about quantity, because the quality was there too, every game was a must watch or must attend because the stakes were so high and teams so evenly matched.
What activation plans do you have for Sunday?
We’ve been building towards the final for the last two weeks running competitions via the Rewards Club and our media partners and sharing build up content via our social channels.
On All-Ireland Final day we will be hosting the Bord Gáis Energy Cupán Tae at Croke Park for 150 customers with special appearances from our ambassadors Ciarán Carey, Alan Kerins and Alan Cadogan who’ll be previewing the game in the company of RTÉ’s big game commentator Marty Morrissey.
Fans attending the game should keep an eye out for the Bord Gáis Energy Sliotar along the Jones’s Road and those entering through the Cusack Stand concourse will be in for a special surprise!
Can you give me a prediction on how you think the game will go?
As a proud Galway supporter, I am a mixture of nerves and excitement, but in my official capacity as Bord Gáis Energy Sponsorship Manager, I couldn’t possibly comment!
Whatever the outcome, I am looking forward to two great teams and what should be a cracking game on Sunday with an incredible atmosphere.
Sport for Business gives a platform to its members to go deeper into the why’s as well as the what’s of sponsorship. Find out more from the other All Ireland Hurling Championship sponsors Pippa Doyle at Littlewoods Ireland and Niall O’Callaghan from Centra.
Image Credits: Sportsfile