Music festivals are the greatest hype right now. Coachella, Outside Lands and Stagecoach give bands the chance to tour the world and play for hundreds of thousands of fans. The most profitable music festivals know how to brand themselves.
According to a Village Voice article, the FarmBorough Festival, New York’s first country festival couldn’t live up to the challenge.
Even though the Live Nation event collaborated with Founders Entertainment to offer experienced and crucial booking power, the festival after one year had to call it quits.
So what made FarmBorough fail?
The Live Nation’s President of Country Touring, Brian O’Connell, believed that the festival wasn’t the typical “cookie-cutter” country music festival. He thought it had its own unique vibe in comparison to other country festivals.
However, FarmBorough failed because it sounded like every other country festival. The simple truth was that it had nothing special to offer guests besides the big name headliners on the stage like Luke Bryan and Brad Paisley.
It’s branding, or lack thereof, didn’t set FarmBorough festival apart from other concerts.
What can help a music festival succeed?
The fact of the matter is that it’s hard to brand a music festival, especially one that revolves around one genre. But if you follow these steps you can help differentiate your festival.
- Produce bookings that incorporate both big-time headliners and up-and-coming artists.
- Engage festival goers through giveaways, sweepstakes, and sponsorships.
- Encourage social media engagement, by having a specific hashtag or photobooth for participants to upload to Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.
- Establish a pop-up shop for customers to shop and purchase merchandise.
- Create an experience that is memorable for guests so that they want to come back year after year.
Communications is crucial in creating a successful festival because it helps to establish a unique experience for participants. By incorporating popular trends and “cultivating its own distinct tastes” with brand integration, your music festival could be the next big thing.