The right angle on festivals? Jonathan Emmins, founder, Amplify
We Brits love a festival. It’s a love affair that, far from starting in the 60s, goes as far back as the fifth century when our pagan ancestors rolled around in the mud and the moonlight. But, thanks to a few high profile misfires and miscalculations, some think festivals are waning.
There’s no denying that there are challenges, like a risk of over-saturation and the downturn of hedonism. But abstemious festival-going doesn’t mean festivals are dying. Far from it. Last year 3.5 million people attended a festival in the UK and the market is estimated to be worth £2bn to the economy.
And as for ‘over-saturation’; one person’s over-saturation is another person’s diversification. From Ghostfest to Foreverland and the Pop Punk Pile Up, every musical tribe is now catered for. In this way, festivals provide unrivalled opportunities for reaching niche audiences – the nirvana of contemporary marketing.
And yet there are some common mistakes that brands regularly make when dipping their toes in the festival circuit, with the number one error being prioritising stand-out over adding value. Too many brands focus on ‘how can we be visible’, rather than asking ‘how can we be integral to the overall festival experience’.