Marketing and Communications Manager

10 October 2016


The Company:                        London Irish RFC

Location:                    Sunbury-on-Thames, Middlesex 

Reporting to:             Chief Executive Officer

Rugby in England is experiencing huge growth from developments in its governance through to the expansion of the professional and community game. That combined with the impact of Rugby World Cup 2015 and its legacy in this country in particular, suggests that London Irish is well placed to be in the vanguard of club rugby on and off the pitch for years to come.

London Irish – An Overview

London Irish ranks among the oldest rugby clubs in England.  Founded in 1898 by a group of eminent Irishmen based in the capital, over the past 118 years the Club has provided a “home from home” not just for Irish men and women, but also for emigrants from many countries united in their passion for the game of rugby.

The Club is known throughout the rugby community worldwide for the warmth of its welcome and the hospitality that it generously dispenses to friend and foe from far and near.

When the game went professional in this country in 1996, London Irish was a founder member of Premiership Rugby.  Relegated to the Championship at the end of the 2015/16 season, the Club has in place a new coaching structure and rugby management team, led by Brendan Venter and Nick Kennedy, which has revitalised the playing side with the intention to return to the Premiership for September 2017.

London Irish is the only professional club to maintain a successful amateur section which currently plays in National League 3 South as London Irish Wild Geese.  There is also a thriving mini rugby section.

After an itinerant existence in its early years, London Irish settled in Sunbury-on-Thames in 1931 when it bought a property on The Avenue that served as the Club’s base until 2014 when it moved just under a mile to a purpose built, state-of-the-art training and administration complex at Hazelwood.  The Club has played its home matches at the Madejski Stadium in Reading since 2000.

Role Summary

The Marketing and Communications Manager has responsibility for the development and implementation of the marketing and communications strategy for London Irish. The role holder must drive the positioning, promotion and development of the Club’s brand across all markets. This will involve overseeing the development and delivery of first class supporter (customer) acquisition and retention strategies, alongside driving exceptional supporter (customer) and stakeholder communication programmes. In addition, they will actively contribute to the development of new products, propositions and distribution channels. They will shape the Club’s distribution and customer strategy based on their analysis and insight into its markets.The role is responsible for the Club’s marketing and communications department.

Key responsibilities:

Result Areas:

  • Development and approval of impactful, strategic marketing plans;
  • Successful brand positioning, management, and development;
  • Driving greater supporter/customer centricity, market understanding, insight and segmentation;
  • Successful and effective delivery of all marketing, communications and promotional activity
  • The development of a leading marketing and communications capability;
  • Excellent senior stakeholder management internally and externally.


  • Leading the development of market-focused business planning;
  • Developing and delivering the LI marketing, communications and brand strategy;
  • Developing and implementing budgeted and timetabled marketing and communications plans for all markets;
  • Delivering outstanding segment and market specific communication programmes;
  • Developing and rolling-out effective product and proposition positioning/messaging;
  • Efficient and impactful usage of the marketing and communications budget and resources;
  • Ensuring that the Club’s key communications’ responsibilities including media relations, photography and image library, London Irish TV, social media, match day programme, crisis communications and website are delivered to the highest standards;
    • Driving maximum value from the usage of third party suppliers;
    • Embedding a culture of creativity and innovation within the marketing and communications department;
    • Developing strong and effective relationships with key business partners;
    • Management and control of marketing-related risks and the compliance with all relevant regulations;
    • Budgetary ownership, allocation, management and tracking;
    • Regular and ongoing market analysis and reporting;
    • Driving the Club to constantly enhance the supporter (customer) experience;
    • Embedding rigorous commercial disciplines and procedures within the marketing and communications team;
    • Leveraging a supporter (customer)-relationship-management approach to enhance communication programmes through greater targeting and personalisation.


  • Successful experience of managing high quality and effective marketing and communications teams;
  • Hands-on experience of effectively investing a marketing and communications budget;
  • Relevant experience of marketing and communications within the leisure or entertainment sectors in this country and Europe, ideally;
  • Proven experience of working in a multi-cultural and international environment;
  • Knowledge of professional sport, ideally rugby union;
  • Analytical mind, able to use data to inform decision making;
  • Commercial and creative within a business context;
  • An effective and persuasive communicator;
  • A team player who is comfortable working within a close knit team;
  • A relevant marketing, communications or business qualification is desirable.

Preferred Skills and Behaviours

  • Commercial acumen;
  • Understanding of both commercial and sports markets and industry;
  • Energy and passion for working in sports marketing and communication;
  • Demonstrates both creative and operational thinking and judgement;
  • Acts as a role model in embodying core club values and culture;
  • Resilient and ability to adapt to changing business needs;
  • Possess drive, motivation and acute attention to detail in ensuring all commercial opportunities to the Club are captured and explored;
  • Committed to meeting the expectations of all customers, valuing the provision of high-quality customer service;
  • Ability to organise events and activities, tracking timescales, plans and financial resources;
  • Emotionally intelligent and able to interact with others effectively;
  • Showing awareness of goals and standards, is able to follow through to ensure quality and productivity standards are met;
  • Ability to take the initiative and achieve greater than expectations.

Please note that this role will require frequent weekend, evening or unsociable hours of work during the rugby season due to the match-driven nature of professional rugby.

London Irish is an equal opportunities employer and positively encourages applications from suitably qualified and eligible candidates regardless of sex, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, religion or belief, marital status, or pregnancy and maternity.

Please send all applications to [email protected]

Only applicants to be invited for interview will be contacted.

Closing date for applications is the 28th of October.

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