13th May 2020.
Case Study: Embracing Change for Success.
By Amanda Wynne Evans of Wynne Marketing.
It was shortly after I joined Chester Business Club in September 2017 that I attended my first ever ‘Speaker Dinner’ event. Patrick ‘Paddy’ Gill was Chairman back then and I remember watching him introduce Sir Malcolm Walker, Founder of Iceland Foods, whilst I sat next to a very well-dressed fellow wearing a large stately gold chain. I knew that this was not a typical networking event!
Indeed, it was not. And the Club is not a typical networking membership organisation.
What you may not know is that aside from running costs, the money raised by such Speaker Dinners, Lunches, Charity Walks and other events which the Club hold goes to local worthy charities. Chester Women’s Aid, the Neuro Therapy Centre, Hospice of the Good Shepherd, Countess of Chester Charity and many more good causes have received hundreds of thousands of pounds in financial support from the Club since its incarnation in September 1986.
The Club also supports the Cathedral, the University and other bodies through advisory support, collaborations and promotions.
Many of you may also not know, that the Chester Business Club is managed by a group of volunteers from differing and prestigious business backgrounds, known as the Executive Council (EC).
In April 2018 I was thrilled to be asked to become one of these volunteers in a new Marketing Manager role. Although the Club’s events were always a success, the EC wanted to further support and recruit Members and make more use of social media and digital marketing, so my 25 years’ experience in strategic marketing for public, corporate, SMEs and membership organisations was called upon!
I suggested a refresh to the Membership Proposition to build on the Club’s brand heritage, add to the existing event programme with some new style events and create online promotions to help Members to connect and promote themselves more easily. I also undertook a GDPR review and an update to the Members’ Directory and website.
Wynne Marketing began management of the Club’s social media accounts, more than doubling its twitter followers from around 500 to almost 1200. This helped to encourage the online booking of events, which saved on previous admin time. We created a LinkedIn page which provided a way to showcase the Club’s news and event programme. Followers of this page quickly rose to over 400. Of course, we captured the attention of new members too.
At the EC meetings we discussed our Events Programme and added the ‘Open for Business’ event at the Abode as a way for prospective business owners to find out more about and join the Club. Later we added ‘Club 5-7’ at Bar Lounge for Members and non-Members to have a regular drink and catch up after work. You are likely to have met me at these events, welcoming you on arrival and supporting the Chairman and other EC hosts with the smooth running of it all.
Wynne Marketing also instigated the project of using online channels to promote Members’ businesses, which has culminated in the new e-newsletter you have been receiving, created by eclipse marketing.
Sadly, the time has come for me to step down from the Club’s Marketing Manager role and the Executive Council as I focus on some exciting things happening with Wynne Marketing!
I am pleased to hand over to Mark and the team at eclipse marketing, who have done a fantastic job of the e-newsletter and will now be managing the website and social media. Mark Astbury has been a member of the Club and Director of eclipse for around 30 years.
I hope that this journey has given you, the reader, an insight to everything that is done behind the scenes to support Chester Business Club Members, their businesses, charities and commerce in Chester.
Reading this and not a Member? If you wish to join, please apply for membership.
I hope to see you at a Club event as soon as possible!
Amanda Wynne Evans
Director at Wynne Marketing consultancy
Chester Business Club Member