How to Capitalise on Cork's Many Festivals

How to Capitalise on Cork’s Many Festivals

cork festivals

How to Capitalise on Cork’s Many Festivals

Every Summer Cork explodes with a multitude of festivals. These festivals bring in 1000’s of visitors each year and every Business should aim to capitalise.

How will your business profit from this huge influx of potential customers?

It is rare when a business knows where 100’s of potential customers will be actually be at a given moment. Even rarer is the business owner actually having some idea of what ‘type’ of customer they will be.

If they are old or young, local or tourist. Even these basic assumptions can give us a huge edge over targeting our audience, gathering useful information for future marketing and making sales.

Marketing for the Festivals in Cork

Each Festival and Event vary in style, locations the audience they cater for.

Every Cork based Business should take a moment each year to contemplate how their business can capitalise on the many festivals which take place

For Example

Events such as the Choral Festival are housing shows all over Cork City. You will know exactly when and where 100’s of hungry and thirsty tourists will be at an exact moment.

  • Have staff hand out flyers after certain shows to get tourists and locals into restaurants, bars, hotels, cafes and nightclubs
  • Add an irresistible offer to get them in the door (10% off, 20% off etc)
  • Research the event. A small bit of research into each show and event will give you an idea of the style of audience to cater for and of course the exact time.
    Do you need flyers to promote tea and cake or dessert and wine or burgers and beer.

Marketing is all about promoting the right message at the right time to the right people. In these rare occasions, we actually know what kind of people we are dealing and what time. We should aim to profit from this information

The Choral Festival in Cork

Choral Festival

People visiting Cork to attend the Choral Festival are true Music lovers. Is your business related to music in some way? Have your flyers at the ready. They are housing events all over the city.

Check out for exact dates and venues.

Knowing the style of music we can assume age and needs of our potential customers tailoring our marketing material (flyers, leaflets) to better catch their attention.

The Cork City Marathon, Half Marathon and Team Relay

During the Cork City Marathon the city is bursting with not only tourists but people from all over Cork. Increase your email marketing with scratch cards, a flyer with a competition or simple competition sheet. A few days work over events like this and you could gather 100’s of email addresses of people who live in Cork which you could market to all year round!

cork marathon

Shandon Street Festival
Shandon Street is not an obvious tourist street in Cork and not the busiest of streets throughout the year. Many locals will be venturing up for the day so take this opportunity to put your best foot forward and get local people in. Even if only for one coffee or one pint. They will at least leave knowing your business and if ever wanting a change will venture up again.

Live at the Marquee

Check out for exact dates and details.

Attracting a more youthful audience, where will they all go afterwards?

  • Where are they all staying?
  • What are they doing all weekend?
  • Do you cater for young people?
  • Do you offer paint balling?
  • Youthful Clothing?
  • Perhaps even the best fry in Cork for all those hungover heads?
live at the marquee

Have a well designed, well timed flyer outside the hostels of Cork on the weekend of massive gigs and see your business soar.

Cork Yacht Week

Check out for more details.

An older audience? A family day out perhaps? Stroll among the well dressed crowd and distribute marketing material to the exact sort of clientele you are chasing. Flyers specifically tailored for more premium products. Salons, Jewellery, High-end Clothing, Restaurant Deals, Spa Breaks, massages, etc.

Damhsafest – Folk Dancing Festival

The Folk Dancing Festival attracts many international visitors. It is also a great festival for the family of ‘very’ young and ‘very’ old. Does your business cater for the needs of young children or the elderly?

Check out for more details.

Cork Pride Festival

Check out for more details.

A light hearted, open festival celebrating Gay pride with many people dressing up and having fun.

Does your or can your business cater to the pink pound? A hugely profitable niche market for all businesses to consider.

Gay weddings are on the rise with huge growth potential for catering companies, hotels, photographers and more to still create a niece from themselves.

Gay nights in bars and clubs are also becoming more and more popular. A large and focused festival all Cork businesses should consider.

jazz festival

The Cork Folk Festival and the Cork Jazz Festival

These festivals attract 1000’s of people each year and if you are a Cork based Business you should be trying to gather as much information from these people as possible.

They will have come to Cork and of course enjoyed themselves. Will they come again? chances are high. Will they tell their friends and family of their time in Cork, the festivals, the food and more? Of course they will.

Wouldn’t you like the email address of these particular people. Wouldn’t it be great to email them the following year with your hotel deals, your restaurant offers, the big night you have planned in your pub.

If they were coming or had told ‘anyone’ of their time at Cork over the year wouldn’t they forward on your email to interested parties?

And how much does this ongoing marketing cost you? – nothing.

It simply takes preparation each year to accumulate the email addresses in the first place. As years pass you could build an incredibly valuable email list specifically targeted at people coming to Cork or people who have been to Cork in the space of a few days. This is incredible targeted marketing.

8 Marketing Angles your Business can consider

1. Cork Pride

Every Business can capitalise on Cork Pride showing your business as a local, proud, Cork based company.

2. Irish Pride

With many tourists from overseas you can amplify the Irish nature of your business.

With the right angle you can gather hundreds of ‘facebook likes’ over the course of these festivals and event which can be marketed at throughout the year and following years.

3. Is your Business located near the actual event

Being the pub across the road can be enough, but only if your doors are open and establishment inviting.

If you are there at the right time and get the first few audience members coming out from a show the rest will follow, but make it obvious.

Put yourself out there. Have a tray of sample treats presented by your friendliest staff member as people walk out, point them in the direction of your establishment.

Walk them up if need be. Tourists are on holidays. They are here to spend their money. Where they spend their money is anyones.

4. Future Marketing

Any business within the hospitality industry can capitalise on the accumulation of email addresses during the Summer months of Corks Summer festivals.

100’s if not 1000’s of email addresses could be gathered as years go by. The festivals aren’t going anywhere and the best people who push festivals are the people who get out there.

5. The After Party

People come from all over the world to attend some of Corks festivals, but not all festivals go on till late. When the shows ends many a person wants a drink, some food, a dance and some music.
Can your business cater to their needs?

6. Arts and Crafts

Many of the festivals are inked to the arts in all its forms. Followers of such festivals and events are lovers of art, music, drama, sculpture, literature and more. Does your business cater to these needs?

7. Organise tours

People will be coming in from out of town, and many (even Irish) will not have a plan for the day after the event they came to see.
- Can you organise their day?
- Do you do day events or day trips?
- Surfing? Trips to Cobh?
- Taxi Services?
Grab them at the right time.

8. Consider the Audience

Every event is an opportunity many businesses can profit from. It is simply about creating a connection and considering the audience. How your business can connect with this particular audience on an emotional level.

You also must consider that it is not simply about making profit on the day, but strengthening your brand and gathering valuable marketing information.

For example: A hotel that constantly gathers email addresses during the summer events will have a huge advantage the following year being able to email hundreds of people directly knowing they have already been won over by Cork and enjoyed the festivals the previous year.

In Conclusion

When opportunities present themselves all business owners should take a moment and ponder ‘Can my business capitalise?’ The answer 9 times out of 10 is yes. The only draw back is simply the time it takes to put your idea into action.

This is why I am here. Businesses who fully understand the value I can bring to a business gain the most from my services. The more we do business together the more I understand your business, your services and house all necessary graphics, logo, fonts, styles etc in order to design your items. Then in moments like these when opportunities present themselves it simply takes an email to state that you ‘want’ to capitalise and I can essentially do the rest.

The underlying idea of the article and all my articles is one of marketing. That a business owner should always be thinking of how he or she can capitalise on an opportunity.

Any event anywhere can of course be profited from. However, Cork is very unique with over 24 Festivals each year and many more smaller ones. Most are established and will continue to run for years to come. If you are Cork based you should realise the full potential these festivals can offer your businesses.

Want to discuss Marketing?
Get in touch or call me on 021 2340063

About the Author Paul Feeney

Paul Feeney is a Brand Manager, SEO Specialist, Marketer and Designer who helps businesses increase traffic, attract more visitors, convert leads and close sales.

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I offer weekly Mastermind calls which help business owners gain clarity, confidence and clients through advice, support & accountability.

Leave a Comment:

Kevin says February 18, 2016

Given me some great ideas and the encourage to implement them. Great post

    Paul Feeney says July 18, 2017

    Thanks Kevin, great to hear

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