For the very first time, Northern Ireland was selected to host the 2023 World Sheepdog Trials at Gill Hall Estate, Dromore welcoming 240 handlers and their dogs from 30 countries across the world.

RNN Communications was tasked to create a campaign that would elevate the profile of the Trials and to re-ignite interest in a more traditional method of sheep handling.

The Brief

  • To promote the Trials and position the event as one of the largest in Northern Ireland in 2023
  • Drive interest and encourage visitors – target of 15,000
  • Launch and promote the relatively unknown venue of Gill Hall Estate
  • Elevate interest in the lost art of sheepdog handling with the Northern Irish public

The Solution

RNN Communications delivered:

  • A national launch at Gill Hall with Irish competitors and key stakeholders, highlighting the status of the event
  • X11 regional press releases were drafted to highlight local competitors and issued to 40 regional titles and radio stations
  • Strong angles identified with competitors eg: grandfather and grandson duo, female competitor – and pitched out for broadcast and feature interviews
  • PPC campaign to drive ticket sales two weeks prior to the event
  • One week out, a Royal visit became a possibility. RNN worked with the Northern Ireland Office on plans for the visit, including protocols with regards to media
  • RNN Communications engaged with leading Northern Irish influencer, All That’s Pretty, to visit the event

The Outcome

  • 25,000 visitors attended
  • Total campaign reach of over 45 million across Ireland and UK media
  • Seven television features including the One Show, ITV Breakfast and evening news, BBC Northern Ireland Newsline and UTV Life
  • 15 media teams hosted including Good Morning Ulster who broadcast live from the event each day, Cool FM and Downtown Radio
  • 210 pieces of press coverage achieved
  • 100% inclusion of Gill Hall Estate in media coverage
  • PPC campaign reached 879K with 4,000 website clicks and 15% increase in traffic to the site

Let’s create your success story

Team up with us to create a story that speaks to your audience, inspires them to act, and brings you real results.