The Leading Edge RunWild Marathon is challenging, competitive and fun event with races designed for every level of runner. Events include the Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K, 5K, and the WildOnes Kids MaraFun.
Created and managed as a non-profit organization, the Leading Edge RunWild Marathon mission is to promote a healthy and active lifestyle while raising money for important charities in the community.
This case focuses on brand development, marketing strategies, communications and overall management for a not-for-profit organization.
Event stakeholders were looking for an effective way to establish a credible running event that would promote their passion for healthy living, share with St. Albert an event that would make history, as well as raise money for an important charity in our community. They turned to Urban Jungle for help. Our methodology was to examine every possible angle to get a clear idea of what they wanted to accomplish and why they wanted to accomplish it. This approach proved to be successful and the process involved both Urban Jungle and the client working together in order to succeed.
To create a memorable and engaging athletic event that raises awareness and essential funds for a local charity.
Primary Marketing Challenges
We identified many barriers that were standing between the stakeholders and success:
- What type of athletic event would we host? Would it be a “one-off” or an annual event?
- Why would we host such an event?
- Which charity would we partner with with? Why?
- Would skeptics criticize the stakeholders of using the event to market their own companies? If
so, would it matter?
- Once we determine the type of event, what would we name it? How would we establish a
strong and cohesive branding platform that differentiates it from other similar events? How
would we establish a base to develop long-tem credibility?
- How do we generate the necessary funding to host such an event?
In our preliminary examination of the situation, we identified five important factors that would be the foundation of the strategy:
- The stakeholders private companies were credible, cutting-edge, health-based organizations
located in St. Albert.
- St. Albert was going to celebrate its 150th anniversary in 2011.
- St. Albert has never hosted a marathon.
- There weren’t any other St. Albert-based marathons.
- Runners are a tight-knit influential target group. They are willing to invest a great deal of time, energy, passion and money in a great race.
This proved to be the ideal time for the stakeholders to host a professionally branded marathon event in St. Albert.
The primary audience included male and female runners aged 25-45, with a heavy female skew. The secondary audience focused on local businesses—partners required to provide a base of necessary funding to achieve the organizations overall fund raising objectives.
Communication Tools and Tactics
RunWild’s brand platform development included elements such as name, charity focus, Vision, Mission, Values, Key Messaging, Positioning, Elevator Pitch, Colour Scheme, Typeface, Visual Identity, Graphic Standards Package, Advertisements, Sponsorship Packages, Website, Social Media, News Releases, Event Planning and Execution.
With the inaugural event held in May 2011, the Leading Edge RunWild Marathon proved to be an overwhelming success enjoyed by over 1,500 race participants, 300 volunteers and nearly 2,000 spectators. The event also raised $70,000 for the Zebra Child Protection Centre.
Now in its second year and already ranked a Top 10 event by Canadian Running Magazine, the Leading Edge RunWild Marathon has established itself as one of the region’s premiere road races.