Behind the scenes of Horse Racing Ireland’s €200,000 ‘influencer’ campaigns – make sure it doesn’t look like a “sales message”

Briefings for ‘influencers’ to promote horse racing asked one celebrity to talk about the “unbelievable care and attention” given to horses.

Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) spent close to €200,000 paying influencers to help market racing over a five-year period with campaigns involving former rugby player Rob Kearney, RTÉ presenter Doireann Garrihy, and the 2 Johnnies.

A briefing for Doireann Garrihy said they were not looking for a “huge output” from her and that they would love input from her on creating content “that will speak to her audiences … and she knows them best”.

In a creative plan, Horse Racing Ireland said they would like the RTÉ presenter to announce to her followers that she would be attending the Dublin Racing Festival last year but that it should not come across as “a sales message”.

The brief said: “She’s excited to go, what should she wear [Outfit] A or Outfit B.”