Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Boost Your Festival Attendance

No strangers to festival production ourselves, we found this article from Special Events magazine worth a read for all you budding (or struggling) festival organizers out there.


The economy may be in a slump, but that doesn't mean you have to lower expectations for your event. Sometimes it simply takes a good hard marketing push to pull in the crowds. Three festival experts show us how they use everything from uber-popular Facebook to still-relevant direct mail to do just that.


THE PULL: The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival brings in 400,000 attendees annually to the legendary city for a celebration of Louisiana music and culture. The seven-day end-of-April affair offers 12 stages of musical options ranging from jazz, gospel, rock, and rhythm and blues to Latin and African music. Headliners Aretha Franklin, Joe Cocker and the Dave Matthews Band have graced the stage of the event, which dates back to 1970.

THE PUSH: “The festival's Web site is the most aggressive Internet-based marketing tool,” notes Louis Edwards, associate producer of promotions. But he stresses it's mainly a source of information. “With an event the size and scope of Jazz Fest, it's difficult to get too cute without being confusing,” he says. “We strive for clarity.”

Beyond the Internet, the festival's organizers rely on good, old-fashioned print and radio advertising, both locally and in major metropolitan cities across the U.S. In fact, paid advertising has “proven extraordinary,” according to Edwards.

Read the rest of the article here.