When a project or club receives Sport England funding we want them to shout it from the rooftops as this will help you attract new members. To help you promote your award we have created this guide.
You can promote your award in several ways:
- Generating media coverage by issuing a media release
- Holding an event to mark the completion of the improvements to your facility or the purchase of new equipment
- Promoting your award using social media such as Twitter and Facebook
- Using our branding on all literature such as websites and brochures and displaying signs or stickers which show that you have secured financial support from Sport England and the National Lottery
Promoting your project
This page and accompanying documents provides all the information and help you need to ensure that your project gets the coverage and recognition it deserves. It covers everything from using the right logo through to issuing a press release, writing to your MP and organising your event.
The tabs below provide information specific to:
- Primary Spaces
- Inspired Facilities
- Protecting Playing Fields
Informing your MP
It’s important that you tell the MP (or MPs) that represent the constituency your project is based in about your work - and to let them know you have received funding from Sport England.
Not only does this keep them informed about what funding goes into their constituencies but MPs sometimes use these examples in their parliamentary work.
When contacting your MP, it’s helpful to include the following information in your letter or email:
- What your project is and what the funding will be used for
- Who it is benefiting and what the impact will be
- Background information about the fund
- An invitation to visit your project or attend any launch event you’re planning
- Request for a supportive quote in a press release
You don’t have to write to your MP at every stage of the project. It’s usually best to let them know that you have received funding and then contact them again if there is an event you would like them to attend, such as an official opening.
To find out which MP represents the area where your project is located – type the postcode of the facility into the Find your MP website which will also provide you with their contact details. It is best to either write to them at their Westminster address or email them directly.
Remember – MPs are based in London from Monday to Thursday when Parliament is sitting so it is best to plan an event either on a Friday or the weekend, when they are back in the constituency. Alternatively you can plan an event during recess, when Parliament is not sitting.
Generating media interest and coverage
It is important that you use your funding award as an opportunity to generate media coverage for your project. This lets people know about your project and how their community is benefiting.
In most cases, local newspapers, radio and possibly even television will be interested in your success story.
Writing and sending a media release
We have drafted a sample press release for you to use, which will need to be personalised with information about your project and some quotes.
Please note there is a different sample press release for Primary Spaces, it will be added to this webpage on Tuesday 10 June.
We would also like you to issue a press release to your local media once work at your project is complete.
This can be tied in with an official opening. We have drafted a template press release for you to use. Again, it needs to be personalised with information about your project and some quotes. You can download a Microsoft Word versions of both sample releases below.
There are a few important things to remember when filling in the template press release:
- Think about the impact of the grant – explain how the grant will make a real difference to people who use your facility and how it well help others to get involved in sport. Highlight any aspects that will help open up the facilities to new groups of people, such as disabled participants.
- Make sure you have a good story to tell – think carefully about what would be interesting to local people who read the news. Was the club’s future at risk until you secured this funding? Did someone famous once train at your club? Do you have a dedicated volunteer with an inspiring story?
- Attach a high quality photo – a picture says a thousand words and photos can really improve your chance of gaining publicity. Make sure you provide the names of everyone in the photo and make clear who is who – it will be used as a caption. It is important that anyone who is going to be photographed has signed a photography consent form; you can download one below.
- Be available for interviews - make sure that someone in your group is available to speak to the media and can do radio and television interviews if required.
- Include your contact details – this is essential so that the media can contact you directly.
- Follow up with a phone call – journalists receive lots of press releases each day and it will help if you give them a quick call to highlight your news. If time is an issue, select one or two key newspapers or radio stations to make sure they have received your press release.
You will be in the best position to know which local media covers your area but think about the following:
- Your local newspapers
- Your local commercial radio stations
- Your local BBC radio station.
Spend some time phoning them in advance and asking for an email address to which you can send a press release. Sometimes you will have the email address for the news desk which is a central inbox for news coming into a newsroom.
On other occasions, you will have direct email addresses for local reporters. Collate them into your own distribution list and then store all the email addresses safely so that you can use them again. You can add to your distribution list as your project progresses.
When you email your press release, it’s best to put everyone’s email address in the BCC box and paste the press release directly into the body of the email. That way, your press release appears immediately on the journalist’s screen and is easier to read.
If you include photos, try not to attach too many or to have file sizes that are too large as this can slow down the recipients’ email systems.
You may want to promote your news and your project using social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Flickr.
Sport England's Twitter handle is @Sport_England - include this in your tweets so that we can retweet your good news.
We would suggest sending a tweet such as: We’ve received £XXXXX of funding from @Sport_England fund to help us [what the money will fund, eg re-roof our clubhouse]
Let us know if you promote your news on Facebook and we will include
a reference to it on the Sport England page.
If you film an event, make sure you upload it to YouTube. Our YouTube account is sportenglandfilms and we are always keen to share footage of people who have benefited from our programmes. Get people who use your facility to talk about how the funding will make a difference or show us what your current facilities are like.
You may want to upload images onto flickr so you can share them with media and other interested parties. You can directly link flickr to your website.
Please do not make reference to your award through social media channels until we tell you you can do so.
Organising an event
If you organise an event to celebrate your project, it can be a good opportunity to kick start your project, thank your volunteers for their efforts and inform local media and MPs about your work. It all raises the profile of your project locally which can lead to more people taking part in sport.
If you decide to go ahead with an event, you should consider the following points:
- Plan your event well and make sure you start and finish on time
- Make sure that you have the right people available. They will need to be able to talk with enthusiasm and authority about your project to any journalists or VIPs that attend.
- Let the media know about your event well in advance and remind them a few days before it takes place. Be clear about why they should attend (opportunity to ask questions/conduct interviews/learn more) and make it clear they can gain more from attending than simply asking you to email the information to them
- Make sure you take photographs on the day
- If children under 16 or vulnerable adults are to be photographed, ensure you have a signed parental consent form
Use the downloadable checklist to ensure your event runs smoothly.
Branding, signage and logos
Different funding streams have different branding requirements. Take a look at the tabs below to find out what you need.
Sport England has a range of other services that can benefit your project. Find out more about the services we offer.