Work on an industry-wide awareness campaign is moving at pace as the Business Visits and Events Partnership (BVEP) confirmed the provisional member representation of the Action Group, 3 August.
Selected representatives from across the events and experience industry will meet next week to discuss and finalise the details of an industry-wide campaign, which has so far achieved £30,000 in support from events businesses and trade associations.
Further support is required, and businesses from all fields of events and experiences are urged to get on board. Nearly 100 businesses have already pledged support to date.
The aim of the campaign, which will support the movement #WeCreateExperiences, is to raise awareness among the general public and national media about the true value of the industry to daily life, the wider economy, and to reassure both the public and corporations that events are safe as standard come 1 October, when larger events will be able to run again in England.
The money raised so far will fund a professionally-led PR campaign, which the Action Group will put out to tender once the details of the brief and message are finalised by mid-August.
The #WeCreateExperiences movement was conceived by Rick Stainton, executive group director at creative agency Smyle, who put the idea forward at Mash Media’s #GetBritainMeeting summit in July, and will be fronted by the BVEP. Neil Thompson of The Delegate Wranglers was involved in these preliminary discussion at this meeting in late July and DW will be giving it full support in terms of publicity on the group and all its other social media channels.
Stainton said he was delighted to have received £30,000 in pledged support, and added he believed there was more interest out there. “The supporters list is ever-growing as it needs to achieve a credible representation of as many sectors as possible,” he said.
“We have already raised £30,000, which is great, but we feel there is likely a higher level of firepower needed for the PR budget. There are more on-going conversations, referrals to association members, leveraging of industry networks and a particular focus now on more venues, exhibitions organisers, and hotels to get engaged.
“We are also looking at potentially aligning or bringing together other initiatives, and are confident we will further increase on this figure in the coming days, with the aim of reaching £40,000 to give the PR campaign enhanced resource.”
Businesses employing fewer than 50 people and annual turnover below £10m may pledge £250, while larger organisations can contribute £500. Those wishing to contribute should contact Stainton on email@example.com and Simon Hughes, chair of the BVEP, on firstname.lastname@example.org
On the Action Group, Hughes stated the importance of inclusive representation from all corners of the industry. He noted: “It is important we are as all-inclusive as possible with the Action Group. We feel we have a good spread of stakeholders that deliver product launches, brand experiences, conferences, conventions, exhibitions, celebrations, weddings, festivals, music and charity events, as well as representation for freelancers. We ask if anyone feels we have missed out on any particular field, that they contact us immediately.”
The Action Group will be chaired by Hughes and is tasked with defining the PR brief and putting it out to tender. It provisionally includes representatives from: BVEP, Smyle, Jack Morton, WRG (The Creative Engagement Group), TRO, XYZ, DRPG, Micebook, ExCeL London, Mash Media, WeAreTheFair, Smart Group, Pure Communications, XYZ, MPI, PSA, and GetConnektd. Sarah Haywood will represent weddings and parties. Representation from an exhibition organiser and hotel group is yet to be confirmed.
The entire events and experience industry will be called upon to push the campaign, and more details will be released in the coming weeks.
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Huge thanks to Martin Fullard of Mash Media for his support with this campaign and tireless work for the industry