The YMCA partnered with the City of London and London Public Library to offer an all-in-one experience for members now known as the Bostwick Community Centre, YMCA, and Library. With ambitious membership targets, the YMCA, and the entire facility, needed a strategic marketing and communications effort that would build excitement and buy-in for the new facility, meet initial membership targets, and develop a pipeline for future sales and engagement.
To build awareness of the new facility, generate excitement, and create brand champions, a one year marketing plan was developed, focusing on three key phases: awareness, lead generation, and sales. This multi-phase campaign centred on outcome-focused narratives and ran across traditional, social, digital, and out-of-home channels. All channels were integrated to encourage audiences to sign-up to a permission-based marketing list via a standalone marketing landing page. Additionally, audiences were brought together to experience the space via milestone events, including a community BBQ that attracted more than 4000 guests. On opening day, membership sales had surpassed all targets and continued to track ahead of year end targets, and the Bostick YMCA had achieved record breaking pre-sales as compared to other facility openings locally and across the country.
One interesting challenge of the project was that the facility went by a placeholder name, a geographic reference to the area of the city it is in, for the first 8 months of the campaign. After approval by municipal council of an official name, a mini communications campaign was undertaken to socialize the new name with a variety of stakeholders to reduce confusion and maintain the momentum of the ongoing marketing efforts.
sagecomm creates beautiful, compelling designs but is much more than a typical creative agency. Their expertise in positioning our cause and in creating compelling cases for support has assisted in the growth of our association for nearly 10 years. They truly understand, and care deeply about, the YMCA movement.
With multiple campaign phases, a compelling suite of messages and calls to action were critical to moving people through the awareness and education phase into the action of membership purchase. Among other mediums, rotating mobile signage on-site was used to communicate about major project milestones, special events, and finally, to help prompt visits, tours and purchases.