In the market for a laugh: University of Leicester students promote Leicester Comedy Festival 2018

Posted by pt91 at Feb 09, 2018 10:19 AM |
Festival running from 7-25 February receives a promotional boost by students from MSc Marketing for the Creative Industries programme

Issued by University of Leicester on 9 February 2018

International students from the University of Leicester’s School of Business have collaborated on a live project to promote the Leicester Comedy Festival.

Leicester loves a laugh. This week sees the return of the Leicester Comedy Festival, celebrating its 25th anniversary, with over 830 shows in 69 venues across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland from 7 - 25 February. This year’s star performers at Europe’s longest-running comedy festival include Harry Hill, Katherine Ryan, Sara Pascoe, Ahir Shah and Alison Thea-Skot.

The students are enrolled on the University’s new MSc Marketing for the Creative Industries programme, which was launched in September. The brief was to review the Comedy Festival’s branding and communication techniques and propose ways in which they could be amended in line with the festival’s audiences. Their research included a Q&A session with the festival’s founder and director, Geoff Rowe.

The project was carried out by students from China and Egypt: Lei Zhao, Miaojue Su, Yi Li, Roujing Tao, Shanxiuji Jiang, Jiawen Xin, Guanyan Long, Tong Wu, Jing Xu, Shi Miao, Xinrong Zhu and Nada Backla. During his discussion with the students Geoff explained: “Around a third of visitors to the Comedy Festival are from Leicestershire. My aim was for everyone in the county to know it’s on here in February, but now I’d like everyone in the world to know!”

The students also collaborated with the marketing team at the University of Leicester’s Attenborough Arts Centre, one of the venues for the comedy festival. Dr Helen Goworek, Lecturer in Creative Marketing at the School of Business, has run live projects to promote specific shows at the Leicester Comedy Festival with her MSc Marketing students on a voluntary basis for the last three years. Last year she incorporated plans to promote the festival into the MSc Marketing for the Creative Industries programme when developing new course content.

She explains how she got involved in the first place: “I contacted comedian and author Viv Groskop on Twitter three years ago to ask if she was going to perform at Leicester Comedy Festival and so I offered to help promote her show with my students.

“Since then, we’ve promoted some other comedians Viv put us in touch with, such as Shirley & Shirley. We promoted Leicester-born comedian and singer Rachel Parris too, because I enjoy going to her solo shows and the ‘Austentatious’ improvised Jane Austen plays in which she performs. We’ve also promoted a comedy panel show organised by Gary Delaney and a discussion panel at the Curve Theatre for Sarah Millican’s online magazine/podcast Standard Issue. The Comedy Festival team saw the promotion we did on the University website last year and approached us to look at ways in which we could collaborate with them, including this new student project.”

This project has allowed the students to apply the branding and promotion theory and practice that they’ve learnt to the Comedy Festival They’ve gained valuable experience of working with an ideal organisation for this new marketing programme, with its focus on the creative industries, that they couldn’t gain just from lectures and textbooks.

Helen added: “It’s the first time that I’ve given students an assignment where some of their work involved watching stand-up comedy shows online and having a seminar in a bar in the Cultural Quarter to experience the atmosphere of the festival.”

Leicester Comedy Festival

More information on the new MSc Marketing for the Creative Industries programme


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