August 1, 2019

Best of the Fest

Brands and Festival Sponsorships

Brands and Music Festivals
📷 Claudia Ciapocha

The blue skies, big smiles and party vibes of last weekend’s Splendour in the Grass are still lingering for many who attended. Music Festivals are a memorable experience and for this reason precisely, brands are lining up to sponsor such events.

Each year, we see an increasing presence of brands & products integrated into the overall SitG experience; some seamlessly, some looking like undercover cops in cargo pants.  Considering that the spend can be anywhere from $20K to $1M to sponsor, activate, staff and promote at Australian Music Festivals, it’s important for brands to know firstly, if their target consumers are at AT the festival … and secondly, what they can do to offer a unique experience that will be remembered.

Music fans will hunt down sponsored areas that offer deeper, cooler access and fortunately for Southtrade, alcohol brands are a much better fit for such activations than say, Australia Post.  Studies have also shown that millennial fans perceive brands as more authentic and trustworthy when they sponsor a music festival,  and are more likely to purchase and recommend a product.


“Almost any brand that is interested or has a reason to play in music can be successful in that music festival space”

– Brian Gordon, CEO, Engine Shop



Some of the smaller-footprint activations at festivals (like SoCo’s involvement as a sponsor of the ‘Three Ways’ pre-Splendour party ) offer brands the opportunity to drive engagement via social posts and in this case, trial of a drink they may have not tasted (or have forgotten about), in a cool, festive vibe. 

For the more full-on activations, Aussie Music Festivals want something that’s going to be an active attraction for their attendees to experience, instead of just an onsite shouty display that people walk by all day.  At this year’s Splendour, Icebergs Dining Room & Bar opened up a premium dining experience (top photo), the ICONIC revived their ‘Landromat’ where punters crawled through the jumbo washer into a dance party and Tinder took it beyond the festival site, enabling people to set up before, during and after the event, as well as hosting the Tinder Block Party where they could meet.

Brands and Festival Sponsorships

Success for brands’ festival sponsorships and their large-scale activations are becoming easier to measure too, especially when the level of brand exposure that people in the targeted demographics have received is tracked through digital engagement. We look forward to creating some more creative future campaigns for our clients at music festivals, incorporating RFID and AR, such as the SplendAR experience we helped bring to life at this year’s event.


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