GoForMike Event & Festival Marketing Tips. Words by Mike Mauer.

Think like a promoter, not just a marketer.


How do you think not just like a marketer, but like a promoter? Look to legendary manager Shep Gordon. When he was promoting Alice Cooper’s 1972 album “School’s Out” he set out to make a big impact. So he had each vinyl record wrapped in a pair of cheap paper panties.

Separately, he ordered a small amount of highly flammable paper panties, knowing these would be considered a hazard and cause a scene at the US Border. He tipped off the Washington Post, who showed up to capture it all and published a front-page article titled “The Largest Panty Raid in History”. The publicity stunt helped the album shoot to #2 and made Alice Cooper a household name.

What’s a fun, big idea you’ve had? Did you actually do it? How did it go?

Here was a fun one we did at 2017’s Tortuga Music Festival. We ordered a plane banner to circle around Luke Bryan’s & Brett Eldredge’s sold out show for two hours. The message: “For a good time call Brett Eldredge 904-592-9672”. When you called a hilarious message Brett recorded for us played, mentioning how he couldn’t wait to “See you at Tortuga Music Festival this April!”

Another one I just remembered – we created trippy artwork of our artist’s faces playing the 2015 Pemberton Music Festival. Over the course of a week, we projected these faces across random trees in downtown Vancouver, only referencing “whatdoesthetreesay.com”…no mention of the festival at all. On that website, we played a playlist of our lineup, animating the faces of the artists as the songs played. A small button “Hear these songs live” led back to our main festival website.

What’s your “Paper Panties” idea? Let me know in the comments!

About the author

Mike Mauer

Hey there 👋 I'm Mike. This is my blog for event marketers, sharing what I've learned working with festivals, concerts and artists over the last decade.

One thing I learned along the way: Events are NOT about who's playing on stage. It's about the fans, the community, and the culture. So, how do you build that out of thin air? How do you activate your fans to buy tickets? How do you deliver a great experience, evangelize them and keep them coming back?

It all starts with a solid, comprehensive marketing strategy. That's what I aim to cover in my blog, and I'm hoping other people can find it useful!

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GoForMike Event & Festival Marketing Tips. Words by Mike Mauer.

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