The Laya City Spectacular has dominated Dublin and Cork over successive weekends. We caught up with Laya Sponsorship Manager Selda Simsek to find out what the business got from the association.

EfB: The Laya City Spectacular looked like a massive success. Did you imagine this when you first decided to get involved?

SS: The chemistry and sponsorship ‘fit’ was brilliant from day one when we decided in 2012 to get involved as a sponsor and the Festival has gone from strength to strength since.

The laya healthcare City Spectacular is now the second biggest free festival after St Patrick’s Day so it’s become a real calendar highlight each year.

We hit record visitor figures this year with over 265,000 people attending in Dublin and Cork. It’s a credit to the hard-working team including Festival Director Shell Holden and our own team at laya healthcare who work all year round to deliver a Spectacular Festival that will delight and surprise visitors of all ages.

What are the main messages you are looking to get across from the brand on such a diverse and busy event?

The Festival is all about inclusive fun and excitement, a perfect platform to communicate our laya healthcare brand purpose ‘It’s Good to Live’.

A key part of our brand strategy is to empower people to look after their health and wellbeing so they can be at their very best always and to bring that to life we have a dedicated ‘It’s Good to Live’ family health and wellbeing stage at the Festival where visitors can come to have fun and get active together.

To give you a flavour of the space, visitors took part in Retro Sweatro 80’s dance classes, Boogie Bounce, Family Zumba and Yoga or they could choose to kick back to listen to a live Real Health podcast with Karl Henry and Leinster Rugby star, Johnny Sexton.

We also showcased some of our many incredible benefits we offer members including free personalised health & fitness checks from our Healthcoach and free Blood Pressure checks from our HeartBeat team.

From a brand perspective, it was engaging and memorable and communicated our brand personality in a really compelling way for visitors.

Are there advantages for Laya Healthcare policyholders?

The good news is that the laya healthcare City Spectacular Festival is 100% free and open to all visitors, including members and non-members. Our members, of course, love meeting our team face to face at the event, there’s always great engagement.

How important was it to work in the other elements of your marketing, like the partnership with Leinster Rugby?

This is hugely important to us as the Festival provides a fantastic opportunity to bring our other major sponsorship properties to life.

We were able to promote our Health and Wellbeing partnership with Leinster Rugby, along with our Super Troopers Health Homework Programme which has over 254,000 school children, 15,000 teachers and 172,000 families participating in it this year.

I mentioned Karl Henry’s Real Health podcast, of which we are a proud sponsor – The Festival was an exciting new platform to drive awareness around our association with the number one Health podcast in Ireland.

What were your highlights of the two weekends?

There were so many ‘spectacular’ highlights that it’s hard to choose!

It was phenomenal however to see the massive crowds that each of our international street performers drew in. They were in their hundreds and swarmed around each performance, so it was a real spectacle and made for fabulous photography.

Our ‘It’s Good To Live’ Health & Wellbeing area was also really important for us so it was very exciting to see it packed with families really enjoying themselves and everyone from 0-100 having fun and getting involved.

Having our own laya team as brand ambassadors at the festival was also hugely important for us but was a great way to engage our team while giving back to the festival and enjoying the craic all at the same time. Members feedback and social interaction have also been amazing this year so 2019 has been a real success for us all around.

How long is your current commitment to the event?

This is our 7th year as title sponsors to the festival so after a little break, we’ll be raring to go again come October, to see what we can pull out of the bag for another spectacular event in 2020.

How easy was it to work with your partners in Dublin and Cork City Councils?

We have enjoyed outstanding support from both Dublin and Cork City Councils, and we have a great working relationship that helps deliver an incredible Festival experience each year for visitors.

Both Councils recognise the hugely positive cultural and economic contribution the laya healthcare City Spectacular Festival makes to the local cities.

It’s a great partnership, and we look forward to working with them again in 2020.


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