As the dates for Coachella grow closer and closer, the festival begin posting more and more on social media, so much more in fact, that it has overtaken the Firefly Music Festival. While Coachella has been vigorously trying to excite its audience and make announcements, Firefly’s social media excitement has died down, perhaps a sign of the calm before the storm since Firefly has about two more months before its festival dates. One the other hand, Warped Tour has still been struggling along, failing to correct its social media marketing mistakes and continuing to uphold a subpar social media campaign.
On April 1st, Warped Tour played a poor joke on its followers. The tour was supposed to release another set of band announcements, but instead, it released 4 random names of people who had nothing to do with music. Yet it did not even announce later that it was an April Fools prank; it left its followers to do their research online and uncover the disappointment itself. This prank was distasteful: it hurt Warped Tour’s social media campaign and credibility rather than helped it make its followers laugh. The ethos in this tweet stemmed from Warped Tour’s social media account’s credibility, but this credibility is what hurt the company because followers actually believed the announcement. The lack of pathos, too, confused followers because it only showed names; it did not seek to appeal to any of the followers’ emotions. This was clearly a social media gaff because it upset followers while it sought to make them excited for a real band announcement.
Warped Tour should have known not to play such a cruel prank on its followers, who were awaiting a band announcement. While Warped Tour pranked its followers, Firefly strayed away from such actions. Instead, this past week Firefly took time off between its exciting band announcement and ticket giveaways to promote the artists who will be performing at the festival. Although the Delaware festival did not tweet much this past week, it tweeted about its poster contest and a few bands on its lineup. With the poster contest, Firefly announced that there would be an extension to the contest as well as free tickets as a prize. From this, I deduced that Firefly was not getting many submissions for the contest, thus it decided to boost participation by extending the deadline and creating an incentive for people to submit poster designs. Firefly tweeted, “Submit your #Firefly poster by Monday night to win free tickets…” and included a link at the end of the tweet. The call to action was explicit: submit a poster. By adding the words “Win free tickets”, Firefly easily created an incentive for its followers to submit a poster.
Like its ticket giveaways, Firefly’s poster contest seeks to bring attention to the festival by increasing audience participation in pre-festival events like the contests that Firefly conducts through social media. By conducting these events through social media, Firefly can direct online traffic to its accounts. This poster contest uses logos because it increases the deadline extension by 5 days, which it implicitly implies that followers should create and submit a poster in 5 days. The logos tries to convince followers that a 5 day extension will be sufficient enough and that due to the extension, followers should take the opportunity to participate in the contest. Unfortunately, this poster contest does not seem very popular amongst followers because it only received 6 retweets and 51 favorites. Instead of relying on its followers to create its festival posters, Firefly should just design its own posters so that more people will buy the official merchandise designed by the credible, official company.
It seemed like Firefly’s social media campaign took a dive this past week, thus allowing Coachella to maintain its spot from last week as the best music festival. The California festival began promoting more of its performers; for example, it let Kaskade, an EDM group playing Coachella, take over Coachella’s Instagram account to promote itself and the festival. In addition to that, Coachella began promoting its online, live-feed of the festival. The promotion of the online, live broadcast of the festival via YouTube is an incredibly beneficial element of Coachella’s marketing because it includes those followers and members of the target audience who did not buy tickets because they either could not attend Coachella or afford the tickets. By giving those who are not attending Coachella an insight into what the Coachella festival may be like, Coachella is implicitly marketing itself to that crowd. It is still marketing its product and brand to those who did not buy the product by giving them a sample of what the festival is like without those people attending.
In addition to its information about its live broadcast of the festival, Coachella also spent the past week making last minute announcements about festival technicalities. This is beneficial because many followers may forget about announcements that Coachella had made weeks ago; therefore by reposting about these announcements, Coachella is providing followers with old news without making them scroll through countless tweets and posts to find certain information. For example, Coachella tweeted about activating festival wristbands, which serve as the tickets to the festival. Coachella tweeted, “Have you activated wristband yet? If not, head over to…” with a link attached to it. The call to action was for the followers to go to the link and activate the wristband. The ethos in the tweet stemmed from Coachella’s twitter account’s legitimacy as a verified official account, thus followers knew that since the festival itself was telling them to activate their wristbands, they needed to go to the specific link attached to the tweet. By making announcements of information through Twitter, Coachella can succinctly provide its followers with updates about important things they need to complete prior to the festival.
Like Coachella, Firefly and Warped Tour both use their Twitter and Facebooks to post information about their respective festivals. Usually, Twitter is used by the companies to make shorter announcements, while Facebook is used to make longer announcements since there is no character limit. Firefly uses Twitter effectively because like Coachella, it uses Twitter to make succinct announcements to its followers about the festival. Warped Tour, while it does make announcements through its Twitter, overkills its social media activity by tweeting too much. Warped Tour not only posts updates about its tour, but it also relies on its twitter to promote its artists, its charities and organizations, and just artists under the punk or alternative music genre in general. If Warped Tour wants to improve its social media campaign, it needs to look at Firefly and Coachella’s social media accounts as examples because those festivals effectively use their Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.