Sport Australia Hall of Fame

Stamping Ground was appointed for the national PR campaign for the 2021 Sport Australia Hall of Fame Awards to raise awareness, engagement, and obtain maximum coverage nationwide for the annual awards program, while driving television audiences to the presentation broadcast on the Seven Network.

Stamping Ground managed all elements of the PR campaign, including the strategic media plan, media outreach and interviews, talent briefing, development and distribution of seven media releases, plus the creation of pictorial and broadcast vision opportunities to enhance both the Sport Australia Hall of Fame Awards program and the overarching SAHOF brand.

The first stage of the campaign amplified the nation’s leading sports scholarship and mentoring program, whereby SAHOF awards 32 scholarships to exceptional young athletes to support them in their quest for excellence on the world stage.

Stamping Ground arranged the announcement of several of the new scholarship holders and mentors on Channel 7’s Sunrise program, in six weather crosses in one broadcast. SAHOF members and mentors were featured in the crosses, including former Wallabies captain George Gregan, nine-time Paralympic champion Louise Sauvage, and Olympic gold medallists Kerri Pottharst, Deb Watson and Malcolm Page.

To maximise media take-up and generate discussion about the scholarships, Stamping Ground spread the recipient announcements over a three-week period in October 2021. This produced nationwide coverage in print, online, for TV and radio. Highlights included interviews with scholarship holders and mentors in numerous News Corp mastheads, such as The Australian,  Melbourne’s Herald Sun, Sydney’s Daily Telegraph, Brisbane’s Courier-Mail, The Advertiser (Adelaide) and The Mercury (Hobart), as well as these radio programs: 3AW Mornings, 4BC Breakfast, 4KQ Breakfast, ABC Grandstand, MMM Rush Hour, and ABC regionals.

For the second stage of the campaign, Stamping Ground rolled out the announcement of the prestigious 2021 SAHOF Inductee and Awards program, which included the strategy for revealing the eight new inductees, and the winners of the new Dawn Award, in honour of Dawn Fraser, and The Don Award, in recognition of Sir Donald Bradman.

To maintain the impetus of coverage, these announcements were released across a five-week period.

To promote the significance of the inaugural Dawn Award Stamping Ground developed a companion media plan for SAHOF Legend Dawn Fraser, which generated nationwide interest. Highlights included a live cross with Sunrise, a 7News package, coverage in News Corp mastheads and online, and 10 radio interviews including 2GB Drive, 3AW Mornings, 4BC Breakfast, 6PR Breakfast, Nova Perth Breakfast, Nova Brisbane Breakfast, 5AA Adelaide Drive and ABC Grandstand.

Due to COVID restrictions in various States, rather than assembling all eight new members of the Sport Australia Hall of Fame for a single induction ceremony, it was decided to release the selections in multiple media announcements. This approach worked in sync with the client’s priority focus on promoting the special Seven Network broadcast Australia’s Heroes and Legends – A Celebration of the Australian Sport Hall of Fame.

Sunrise was chosen as the platform for the announcement of the new inductees, with live crosses to two of them: Anna Meares and Steve Monaghetti. There was also a compilation package featuring the eight inductees – Anna Meares, Steve Monaghetti, Mark Viduka, Jana Pittman, Libby Kosmala, James Dwyer, Tom Hoad and Karen Rolton. In addition, the inductees did more than 30 interviews for TV, radio, print and online.

Stamping Ground also managed the major announcement of Ian Thorpe and Dennis Lillee’s elevation to Hall of Fame Legend status, the highest honour in Australian sport. The resulting media coverage included an in-studio appearance on Sunrise by Ian Thorpe and an exclusive double-page feature with Dennis Lillee carried in News Corp publications nationally.

Furthermore, we helped to organise an innovative public vote which featured nationally in News Corp publications for two weeks: the “Magic Moment” competition, designed to select the most memorable Australian sporting moment of the past 60 years. This was heavily promoted by News in all their metro and online mastheads, with front-page pointers, strip ads, and a two-page feature highlighting the 20 moments that readers could vote for in the Sunday Herald Sun, Daily Telegraph, The Advertiser, The Australian, Gold Coast Bulletin, the Courier-Mail, NT News, Geelong Advertiser, The Mercury and Townsville Bulletin

The final element of our PR campaign was the announcement of The Don Award, The Dawn Award, and the Magic Moment. A release was prepared and distributed with quotes from 2021 winners Patty Mills (The Don Award), Evonne Goolagong Cawley (The Dawn Award) and Michelle Payne (Magic Moment, for her winning ride in the 2015 Melbourne Cup). This achieved nationwide coverage across TV, radio, print and online.

In total, our nine-week campaign generated 3274 pieces of coverage with a potential audience of over 66 million. SAHOF was featured in 270 media outlets. In terms of advertising value, the entire campaign was estimated to be worth more than $1.9 million.