Equestrian and Digital Marketing: A Stable relationship?
The equine industry has long been lucrative, but perhaps, an underrepresented one. In the eyes of the nation, a horse is a symbol of majesty and beauty. For some, childhood riding lessons provide family time and enjoyable pastime, for others, horse racing provides an outlet for those inclined to gamble. But what after this?
Over five million people visit the fifty-nine racecourses in Britain a year. The horse industry’s gross output is estimated at 3.4billion and includes equestrian businesses such as tack/feed shops, livery yards, riding schools and many more. The latter, bringing in over 500 million annually in horse riding lessons.
But, when equine sports and welfare are frequently omitted from school curriculum, how do new people enter the industry and help it grow? Well, it would seem the answer is Digital Marketing. There was a time when the horse industry functioned through hearsay, but now, increased connectivity in the digital age has made communication within whatever industry, immeasurably easier. With the power of social media and digital channels such as youtube, the equestrian world is now more visible than ever. In the last ten years, the world of PR and digital marketing has seen a huge increase in specialist marketing teams that target the equestrian world. The social and digital platforms are the perfect place to get your equine business heard, and with increased reach and visibility, attracts new talent, new investors, new opportunity to the equine world.
Horses welcome so much more business that horse racing and horse riding lessons, horse therapies help those with disabilities to learn and grow, and equestrian related products, from fashion and accessories for the rider or the horse itself provide a host of products for the consumer to buy. While the equestrian world may have been a niche one for a while, it’s clear it is moving into the mainstream world, with global fashion houses like Gucci and Ralph Lauren, lending inspiration from the equine world to sell to the masses.
In conversation with local Leeds based horse trainer and competitor, it was revealed that Facebook is the primary platform for horse riders and competitors, online communities bring together like minded horse trainers and competitors to organise local competitions primarily in the winter, when affiliated horse competitions do not run. Riding lessons, horse breeders, business owners and farriers can come together to generate business, community and the transmission of skills through learning and events.
Whether your business is selling or training horses, offering lessons, learning therapies or accessories, it’s clear that your key to saddling the world of equine and business is digital marketing.
Photography courtesy of Charles Waller – Equestrian Photographer www.charleswallerphotography.co.uk