Music Festivals: How Much We Love Them and Why Brands Should Care

As a music enthusiast, I tend to get considerably excited at this time of the year. Winter is over, spring is in full force and all I want to do is be outside while watching my favorite artists play for massive crowds. That’s right — it’s festival season. This weekend, Coachella kicked off a long list of music festivals featuring both household names and up-and-comers.

Judging by the sprawling crowds these festivals attract, I’m clearly not the only one excited about events like these. These crowds are largely made up of millennials, who, according to a survey from Eventbrite, are invested in experiences. The survey found that 72 percent of millennials would like to increase their spending on experiences, with 77 percent of 18- to 34-year-olds claiming that the best memories of their lives were made at live events.

While festivals offer music-lovers an experience on a vast scale, they also offer brands a great opportunity to reach these attendees. According to a survey from Nielsen, 76 percent of festival attendees and 51 percent of all consumers feel more favorable toward brands that sponsor a tour or concert.

As festivals have gained prominence among millennials, they have made noticeable efforts to be in tune with this demographic. At a recent iteration of Lollapalooza in Chicago, VH1 spent the weekend hosting a GIF Photobooth, which let festival attendees create shareable graphics. VH1 also owned the hashtag #BestLollaEver, where attendees would tweet their own pictures at the festival.

Brands like VH1 have taken advantage of this opportunity to connect with YAYA consumers in the past, but other brands have put in considerable effort as well. Red Bull offered festival scholarships while Lacoste gave out flower garland crowns in exchange for postings on social media. Additionally, Pitchfork Music Festival partnered with Rdio to create a free mobile app that offered features such as a map and a schedule.

YAYA consumers thrive on experiences, and the ones music festivals offer definitely leave a lasting impact. By connecting with YAYA consumers in a way that enhances the festival, brands can become part of that experience.

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