What’s Hot in Festival Event Planning and Promotion in 2018?

festival event planning

The outdoor festival season is quickly approaching, and as the weather improves, people will start looking for music festivals, renaissance festivals, and more that they want to attend. The key to building a buzz about your festival and motivating people to buy tickets is to understand what’s hot in festival event planning and promotion this year.

A great event isn’t just about the performers or activities. To pique people’s fear of missing out (FOMO), you need to make them believe your festival is one of the “can’t miss” events of the year! Here are five hot trends in festivals that can help you do it.

1. Online Influencer Engagement

Working with online influencers to promote your event works. Fortunately, you don’t have to invest a lot of money into the Kim Kardashians of the world to move the needle. Many festival organizers are engaging smaller online influencers with niche target audiences who are less expensive yet very effective in boosting ticket sales.

For example, a music festival organizer could reach out to popular YouTubers with audiences similar to prospective ticket buyers. The online influencer can mention the festival, share links to the event website and ticket sales page, and more.

2. Buying Merchandise with Tickets

Why wait to sell merchandise like T-shirts, beach balls, Frisbees, umbrellas, and more until people arrive at the festival? Instead, sell branded festival and performer merchandise with event tickets to increase your upfront revenue.

To do this, you need to work with an online ticketing company that allows you to easily sell merchandise with tickets. AttendStar offers this feature, so you can bundle one or more merchandise items with tickets to reach your sales goals.

3. Pop-up Retailers

Pop-up shops have become commonplace at festivals like Coachella where brands like Harper’s Bazaar, H&M, Revolve Clothing, Popsugar and Shopstyle have opened pop-up boutiques to sell their products to festival attendees in and around the festival grounds.

Adding retail shopping opportunities can work extremely well at some festivals to build a more immersive, shareable experience. It can also generate more revenue for the event in the form of added sponsors, retail revenue sharing, or space rental revenues.

4. Sponsor Experiences

When it comes to large events, experiential marketing is the new norm. For festivals, there are many opportunities for sponsors to create branded experiences that add to the event while giving the sponsors some promotion, too.

For example, at Lollapalooza, VH1 hosted a GIF photobooth where festival-goers could create animated graphics and then email or share the GIFs on social media. Of course, VH1 also got their email addresses! Another popular experiential marketing opportunity is Twitter walls where attendees’ tweets using special hashtags are displayed throughout the festival.

5. More Ticket Options

Festival organizers are getting creative with ticketing options, because they realize ticket buyers want personalization. To that end, VIP ticket packages with multiple levels of benefits, “Full Festival Experience” ticket packages that could include things like backstage passes and performer meet and greets, and exclusive ticket packages with special perks are necessary to attract the largest audience.

Today, people want more than just tickets. They expect a full experience when they go to a festival, and they want to pick and choose how they enjoy that experience. The first step to meeting their expectations is offering creative ticket options. If you use AttendStar as your ticketing platform, you’ll be able to easily create a wide variety of ticket options and bundles at the price points you choose.

How to Leverage Festival Event Planning and Promotion Opportunities

These are just some of the festival event planning and promotion opportunities that are getting a lot of buzz this year. You can leverage them as you plan your 2018 festivals by developing a comprehensive event marketing plan and ensuring one or more of these opportunities are included.

If you need help, AttendStar is just a phone call away. AttendStar is not only an online ticketing and event marketing company, but the AttendStar team members are also outdoor festival experts! Call 615-223-1973 or use the contact form to get started.