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Mulled Wine and Mince Pies, it's the Henley Living Advent Calendar

Henley Living Advent Calendar


This year has flown by and next Monday will be 1st December. For the last 4 years 1st December has seen the start of the Henley Living Advent Calendar when each night a different venue in the Town hosts some kind of short entertainment – anything from a singer to a preview of the Kenton Theatre Panto.

Phil and I have been involved in some way with the Living Advent calendar since its beginning. I remember speaking to Julie Perigo who had the idea early in 2011 and thinking it had possibilities. As thebestof henley we were on board from the first as a sponsor and we promoted the performances on the events page and via social media. Early this year we were asked if we would like to continue to sponsor and without hesitation we said yes although for the first time this year we will be sponsors as GPC Marketing.

In previous years many people were aware of the bestof henley brand and knew who we were, this year it will be slightly different. We decided to continue sponsoring the event as we really enjoy the performances and being part of something that brings the town together. However we also saw it as means of making people aware of our name and our GPC Marketing business. The real reason all companies choose to be a sponsor of anything.

We are already seeing traffic to our website from the Living Advent Calendar website which is very positive. Further exposure has come from the Living Advent Calendar Twitter account with regular mentions that we are a sponsor. It is now up to us to build on this interest in us. While it was obvious what we did as thebestof henley it is now up to us to inform people of how GPC Marketing can help their business. So we’ve made sure our website is up to date with a clear message of what we can offer.

The other way we can use this opportunity is through our social media channels. Already our Facebook, Twitter and Google+ covers show we are sponsors of the event and we have created several posts that talk about the calendar. From 1st December this will be ramped up as we use our social media to tell people where that night’s performance will be. Interspersed with these posts will be information giving people a more general idea of us and what we do.

The Living Advent calendar has started to be copied by other towns and last year it won one of David Cameron’s Big Society Awards. In an article this week The Guardian has included it in a list of 10 of the best Christmas attractions in the UK. We really enjoy being part of it and look forward to making as many performances as we can and sampling a range of mince pies and mulled wine. We hope to see you there too. 

Are you a venue or partner this year? Why are you getting involved? What performances do you plan to attend or what have you enjoyed?

Gillian Chappell



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