Music Festivals Offer Unique Marketing Opportunity
This guest post comes from Scott Perry. With his great free email newsletter and web site, the New Music Tipsheet keeps the industry informed of new releases as well as commenting on trends and sharing industry news.
While all you managers (and artists) out there are fielding offers for next year's festivals, start thinking NOW about what you can do to maximize your outreach to these massive audiences.
But think about this -- a festival isn't just another gig, it's a marketing opportunity, a huge vehicle you can use to build your following. As festival season approaches, get your strategy together to figure out how to get part of that crowd to join your team. Used to be, if you're slated on the small tent at noon, you were screwed, but at least you were happy to be invited to the party. These days, there's no reason for attendees to miss you if they didn't catch your official performance.
Pull a few pages out of the Phish playbook
Hell, managers and promoters should work together to shake things up this festival season, pull a few pages out of the Phish playbook and really surprise fans with cool treats above and beyond the scheduled chaos -- host an impromptu acoustic set in the parking lot for kids waiting to get onto the grounds. Have bigger acts do a surprise set on the tiny tent at noon just to freak people out. Wake up campers in the middle of the night by playing from the back of a golf cart. Twitter all this stuff however you can –- that is, if you can even get any reception on the grounds (promoters -- pleeeease work with your cell providers to boost reception!).
Allow yourself to be YouTubed / Flickr'd / tagged walking around the grounds passing out tamales in a bear suit.
Baby bands, you have no followers. You've been invited to play a venue that fits 50,000 people a day. If you're staying backstage all day drinking beers with your pals, you're missing out on a huge opportunity.
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