Since 2019, Kal Tire has been an Official Partner of the Vancouver Sun Run – Canada’s largest 10k, and this month, have committed to continuing their support of this signature community event through 2023. “Kal Tire is a best-in-class Canadian company with strong BC roots. A well-known and well-respected brand, they have been an excellent partner of the Vancouver Sun Run, and we’re thrilled to continue our collaboration,” remarks Garnet Nelson of Unite Partnerships.
“The Vancouver Sun Run highlights our shared values of sport, community and family and we’re absolutely thrilled to be on board,” said Jamie Shillingford, Marketing Specialist. “At Kal Tire, helping to make our communities stronger is just a part of our culture, and we are excited to work with the Vancouver Sun Run for years to come.”
Our colleague, Morgaine Jennings (MJ) chatted with Jamie Shillingford (JS) to learn more about the authenticity and benefits of the partnership.
MJ:Everyone loves the Kal Tire branded Km markers along the Vancouver Sun Run’s race route, how did you come up with the idea for this activation?
JS: We wanted to find a unique opportunity to engage with runners; not only as a brand touch-point, but to make them smile while passing kilometer markers throughout the 10km race and also provide a memorable, positive and encouraging message.
MJ: As the Sun Run’s marketing campaign stretches from November-April, are you able to promote different incentives for different seasons?
JS: The early bird registration incentive in December provides us with winter season tire messaging and incentive opportunities, then in March having a promo included in the corporate team packages offers teams who join an exclusive tire incentive. Finally, on-the-day activations at BC place in April provides an opportunity to promote tire changeovers to summer tires. This event is great for face to face interaction allowing for additional incentives, and giveaways to be distributed to runners as they complete the race.
MJ: Which other aspects of the Vancouver Sun Run’s sponsorship benefits are most valuable to you?
JS: The ability to connect directly with the ~50,000 people strong database is very beneficial. Sun Runners tend to be a very engaged group providing valuable touch points for Kal Tire. Additionally, social media campaigns leading up to the event enhance runner engagement and provide us with great brand exposure and messaging opportunities. Working with the Sun Run and Unite has been such a pleasure, they have always been willing to collaborate and are so flexible in making sure the partnership is a success, and all are hitting targets. For example, the Unite team assisted in connecting two brands together for a coffee station activation that Kal Tire and Salt Spring Coffee collaborated on, and was to be positioned in the after-race event at BC Place. We hope to bring this activation back in 2021 and see it all come to light.
MJ: What are you looking forward to most about the race’s return next year?
JS: The Vancouver Sun Run is such a great event and provides so many opportunities from media, direct touch points to consumers, amazing brand presence, and overall community engagement. We are looking forward to the day we can all come together for a successful, safe event.
MJ: Are you a runner and will you be participating in the Sun Run in 2021?
JS: I have not run a whole lot the last couple of years, but I have completed the Sun Run a few times in the past. It would be great to come down to run in the event and look forward to doing so. I better start training now…
MJ: Thanks Jamie!
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