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Sport, Skills & Enterprise
15th May 2008
Bramall Lane, Sheffield United FC

A one-day conference on how to grow vibrant, visible and viable community sports clubs by developing stronger enterprise skills

If community sports clubs are to grow they will have to get away from “just being sports clubs” and benefit from introducing some of the principles applied within social enterprises.

Society needs our community sports club to prosper. We need them be places where people will want to play and exercise, become volunteers and generally become hubs for their communities, in short become ‘places where people live their lives.’

In order to deliver strong sports at all levels sports clubs must improve their enterprise operations and also become more welcoming and customer focused.  Also, as the pressure to increase participation intensifies governing bodies are becoming much more pro-active towards providing practical support for their clubs for them to become better equipped to attract and serve new players and members.

This conference will put forward innovative ways forward for community sports clubs, discuss the notion of sports clubs become social enterprises, how to link up with other community groups and how to transform from hand-to-mouth ‘we-are-just-a-sports-club’ approach and introduce the notion of community sports enterprises.

Speakers will provide background thinking, report from real live stories, discuss how to balance the needs of the various stakeholders and how to provide support to community sports clubs as to how they can grow into sustainable enterprises.

Programme & speakers...

Yuri Matischen

Managing Director,MLS

Social enterprises and community sports clubs

Ceri Jones
Senior Policy Officer
Social Enterprise Coalition

Working with education, health and other related services as a way forward for sports clubs

Irshad Akbar
The Sector Solutions

Stephen Harrison
Stephen Harrison Snooker Academy

From community sports associations to community enterprise

Kim Hazeldine
Head of Community Sport & Active Lifestyles
South Gloucestershire Council

What can community sports clubs learn from their professional counterparts?

Simon Argall
Operations Director
Sheffield United

From volunteer sports club to community sports enterprise

Svend Elkjaer
Managing Director
Sports Marketing Network

Community regeneration and sports development as a medium of engagement in Belfast

Peter Shaw
Belfast Community Sports Development Network
Ronan McKenna

Community Sports Development Officer
Lower Ormeau Residents Action Group.

15.15 Social enterprises in the culture sector – lessons for community sport

John Wright
Director of Policy & Strategy
Yorkshire Culture

Delegate Fees

Delegates will receive a memory tick with full delegate documentation,

including speaker presentations and lunch and coffee breaks

Standard rate
£245.00 + VAT (Total £287.88)

Community clubs, social enterprises, charities
£155.00 + VAT (£182.13)

Additional delegates from same organisation save £30 per person

Subsidized rate (contact Organiser for details)

£95 + VAT (£111.63)

This conference is organised by the
Sports Marketing Network
, the Network for people involved with the commercial, community and marketing issues across all sports, be it club, governing body, sports deliverer or if you are working within informal sports.

SMN works with sports clubs and organisations on how they can make their sport and clubs vibrant, visible and viable. It publishes newsletters and guides, organises seminars and help clubs with their commercial and community activities.

450+ sports clubs, governing bodies, local authorities and sports organisations now enjoy membership of SMN and more than 1300 people have participated in our seminars and events over the last three years.

SMN has also advised, consulted and trained a number of organisations and public bodies including the RFU, FA, Sport England, England Volleyball, British Gliding, Sports Council Wales, UniBond League, England Netball, Welsh Rugby Union, British Speedway, England Squash, Universities, several County Sports Partnerships and 45+ local authorities

As a member you’ll receive Sports Marketing Newsletter 10 times per year, discount on the Network’s reports, handbooks, surveys and conferences and unique access to networking events where you can share ideas best practice.

Annual membership is only £58. As a delegate to this conference, you will automatically receive three months FREE membership.


Everyone’s a winner at York City                         
Blue Square Premier Club York City FC runs a 50/50 draw on match days, just like  many other clubs. Normally, the winner receives around £300 as does the club, however the club has added a nice little feature. Each ticket, which costs £1 also  includes a 20% off voucher for the local Domino’s Pizza,  so in most cases, if you were going to buy a Domino’s  Pizza anyway the 50/50 ticket is then free. We do know  of a number of clubs who report of good link ups with  Domino’s. Raffles for pizzas at half-time and joined up  text/email campaigns are just two of the successful  ideas SMN are aware of. There are around 800 Domino’s in  the UK so chances are there is one or several near your  club. So if you have already linked up, do it now.

Sports Marketing Network UK  

Car  wash in your car park
One  day the head of the Juniors at Swedish ice hockey club Lund IK was walking through the car park outside their arena when he realised how filthy most of the cars parked there were.  At the same time he was trying to raise money for  the U-16s trip to  Canada  so he suddenly realised that here was a money making  opportunity for the Juniors. He then launched  an initiative where people parking their car in the car park during a first team match could have their cars  washed and/or valletted by the  Juniors. Quickly, the scheme became very popular and it now continues long after the Lund IK Juniors have been to Canada.     

We  can think of many clubs where a similar scheme would  work.  Our  local Arc car wash charges around £5 per wash and £15  per full valletting - so if you just serviced 100 cars  at an average at £10 at 20 home games per season…the  total revenue would be £20,000.  

That would pay  for lots of kits and trips.  It would  
certainly be very popular with your  spectators.

How  Brighton RFC used a buddy system to make new players  feel welcome    
Club member  Martin McTaggart explains
“Brighton  RFC used a buddy system when new players attended the  club. This was done through personnel who were  approached by the committee. Their job was to look after  the new recruits through various means, one was to make  sure they had a contact number and person for lifts etc.  another was to look after them after training and  matches.  This was  done with a very enthusiastic President at the time who  organised beer tokens for the new players and buddies at  the club and on away trips sometimes money was given to  look after the new players. The buddy  was selected by age so that there was a common interest.  The buddy was not asked to but the natural link was to  invite each other out when on other social occasions and  some strong bonds were forged. For  example, I am still in  touch with a Welsh lad who moved back to the West  Country.  I  go and stay with him and he has stayed with me  often.”    

Colwyn  Bay FC’s “Kids for Free” scheme is sponsored by local  college.
Commercial  Manager Carol Beard stated: " We want to make Volwyn bay  FC accessible to children, family and the community as a  whole..  We  pride ourselves on being a family club and the decision  to amintain the scheme for the season reflects our  commitment to encourage mnore youngsters to the football  club.  It is  a fantastic news that Coleg Llandrillo Cymru have agreed  to sponsor the scheme.”  The  scheme provides free admission for all under 14s  accompanied by an adult to all home league  matches.    

Saints and Saracens get into dance       
The  Watford and Northampton  based Premiership rugby union clubs are growing  their reach beyond rugby union. Over the  last couple of years more than 3,000 girls have participated in Saracens cheerleading programme run through the Saracens Sport  Foundation.
   Now their neighbours Northampton Saints, in a first for the club,  is launching two one-day dance workshops at the club in co-operation with local theatre school, The Performance Company.      
One day is aimed at 7-11 year olds and the other  at 12-16 year olds.

Each day  costs £55 with a £10 discount available for members of  Bernie’s Gang, the Saints’ Junior Club where members for £10 per season  receive loads of benefits.

Clubs  can now get Full House       
Full House, a new service designed  to help semi-professional sports club grow their gates  and develop their commercial, community and  communication activities has been  launched.           

Full House  is a partnership between two of the leading sports  marketers in the  UK, Paul Oughton of Influx Marketing  and Svend Elkjaer of Sports Marketing Network.      
Many smaller  semi-professional clubs are struggling to break even and  often their survival depends of the support and  generosity of a few individuals.  Many clubs are  seeing declining gates and as the ‘credit crunch’ bites  clubs must take a seriously look at how they develop  their commercial, community and communication  activities.   

How do you grow your gate?   How do you make your match day experience more  exciting?  How do you use technology to engage with  your supporters?  How do you develop community  activities and get them funded? How do you attract new  private and public partners and sponsors?  How you  develop new revenue streams? How do grow the profile of  your club?

Full House can  act as an outsourced commercial, community and  communication department so clubs can either benefit  from the complete marketing, communication, sales and  community package, work on specific projects you want us  to help you with or work alongside and train your  current team    Here’s what  one very satisfied client is  saying:  Steve Nell, General Manager,  Swindon Wildcats Ice Hockey Club, who play in the  Premier League said: “After working for Swindon Wildcats  for just two months Full House have already more than  proved their worth.  The gates are already up and  on Saturday we had our biggest ever takings.   Wonderful!  And we had a full VIP area including  representatives from nine potential sponsors who all  enjoyed the atmosphere. And this in a league where the  gates are generally down.              
They have some excellent ideas and  have already implemented some of them and we are now  going to sit down and review the situation and plan for  the next season, which is going to great,“ ends Steve  Nell.

For further information about Full  House contact:
Paul Oughton Influx  Marketing Tel: 01305  755 607 Email:    

North Svend  Elkjaer Sports  Marketing Network Tel: 01423  326 660 Email;


Sport, Skills & Enterprise

Everyone’s a Winner


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