How to stage the perfect music festival (and make your brand more popular)

With nights getting longer and memories of epic summer nights fading, it’s time for a bit of reflection. Maybe you rocked out at the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury, had your mind blown by the installations at Coachella or lost yourself at the intimate and scenic Lost Village? Whatever your choice of event, there are some core elements that can make or break a festival. So what are they, and how much space is there for brands amongst all the music?

Working with Viacom, we spoke to over 10,000 consumers (ranging from the ages of 13 to 54, and covering 10 countries) to find out just what they look for in a music festival and how they spend their money.

Line-up, production and location are the keystones of the perfect music festival. A large and diverse line-up is essential; festivalgoers want a wide range of music encompassing the biggest names along with some new ones too. And in an age when every festival experience is recorded on social media the production needs to be top notch, with great visuals and amazing sound even if it’s in a field with terrible natural acoustics (that’s the sound man’s problem). On top of this they want a stunning, memorable location (take note Reading Festival) that is easy to get to.

That sounds a lot to get right, but in many ways these are just the hygiene factors. There’s plenty more that can set a festival apart, including great food, logistics, friendly security and more.

The festivals that get it right continue to go from strength to strength – more than 2.4m people registered for Glastonbury 2020 tickets and it sold out in just 34 minutes – and that presents new opportunities for brands. One in two festivalgoers want to see brands at music festivals because they are thought to keep prices down and push the quality of the experience up. Brands that get it right – either by providing something useful to festivalgoers or facilitating a happy memory – benefit from positive word of mouth and increased interest in their products or services.  That’s one way to get your brand heard above all the noise. You can find out more about what makes for an amazing experience over at Viacom’s Insights brilliant blog here.