September 19, 2023
The Fyre Fest Saga: Essential Do’s and Don’ts for Music Festival Marketing
Fyre Festival 2 is coming and many are rightfully concerned about the news. In case you’ve forgotten why, here’s a quick rundown of the 2017 disaster.
What was the infamous Fyre Festival?
Fyre Festival became the greatest festival to never happen. Promised a luxury experience on the Bahamian Island Great Exuma, festival-goers were horrified to find the site still under construction upon their arrival. What was supposed to be the best in music, food, and culture as advertised by some of the biggest celebrities and influencers of the time, turned into an elitist’s worst nightmare and what many attendees deemed fraudulent advertising.
With so much speculation over what really caused the festival’s downfall, Netflix produced a documentary in 2019, titled “Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened,” which tells the story of the festival’s rise and fall. The documentary interviews festival attendees, organizers, and journalists, and it provides a behind-the-scenes look at how the festival went so wrong.
This eye-opening documentary shed light on the risks of building hype without a solid foundation, sparking a collective demand for authenticity and responsibility in event planning and marketing. It was a glaring exposé of the repercussions of false promises, urging a change in how events are presented and marketed.
The documentary has been praised for its investigative journalism and its unflinching look at the festival’s organizers, Billy McFarland and Ja Rule. The documentary has also been credited with raising awareness of the dangers of hype and misleading marketing.
Fyre Festival, with all its shortcomings, has provided us with a treasure trove of insights on how not to market a festival.
Despite the disastrous events of Fyre Festival, festival culture continues to grow as people look for new shared experiences. So if you’re looking to advertise the next big festival event, here’s how you can avoid becoming the next Frye Festival.
Let’s get into it the do’s and don’ts of festival marketing.
Festival Marketing Do’s:
Be Honest and Transparent
Don’t overpromise and underdeliver on what attendees should expect. Be upfront about your festival’s lineup, venue, amenities, price and every detail in between.
Target the Right Audience
Decide early on who your target audience is. Once you know your target audience, you can tailor your marketing messages accordingly.
Create a Strong Brand Identity
Your festival should have a memorable brand identity that will set it apart from other festivals. Your look and feel should be easily recognizable.
Use a Multichannel Marketing Approach
Once you create a strong brand identity, market to your target audience through a variety of channels. Don’t rely on one channel, leverage social media, email marketing, and paid advertising to reach your target audience.
Partner with Influencers
Partnering with influencers can help you reach a wider audience and generate excitement for your festival, so ensure choice of influencers make sense for your event.
Offer exclusive experiences
Determine what unique experiences and opportunities your attendees will have access to and market them.
Festival Marketing Dont’s:
Overspend on Marketing
It’s important to invest in marketing, but don’t overspend. Make sure your marketing budget is aligned with your festival’s overall budget.
Use Misleading or False Advertising
Don’t make promises that you can’t keep. We’ll say that one more time for Fyre Festvival 2: Don’t make promises that you can’t keep! Your marketing should showcase the true essence of your event, ensuring alignment with the actual experience.
Cut Corners on Logistics
Make sure you have a solid plan in place for all aspects of your festival, from transportation and accommodation to food and security. Ensure your attendees will be taken care of.
Don’t be Unresponsive to Feedback
Listen to your audience and reflect on their feedback. This will help you improve your festival experience and avoid any potential problems.
Ignore Red Flags
If you see any red flags, such as a lack of experience from the festival organizers or unrealistic promises, be cautious. It’s better to walk away than to risk being involved in a Fyre Fest-like disaster.
Crafting the Festival Fantasy: Beyond Fyre Festival
As we delve into a new era of festival marketing, we learn, innovate, and aim not just for a festival but an enduring memory, an event legacy. We draw from Fyre Festival’s missteps, striving to create exceptional experiences.
Guided by authenticity, every aspect should embody honesty and transparency, guaranteeing a satisfying experience. Make sure your team delivers on every promise, from the first note to the final beat, leaving attendees with an event worth revisiting.