Why do we feel driven to share phenomenal experiences with others?
As we felt the lift of takeoff to a new city, tasted the cheesy indulgence of deep dish pizza and heard the deafening roar of hundreds of thousands of fellow fans welcoming our favourite bands, the social media team at Tradable Bits held this question in our minds.
The 10th annual Lollapalooza music festival in Grant Park, Chicago was the most fascinating and fun event our team has had the pleasure of attending. Darshan, Morgan and Emily put on our thinking caps and dove headfirst into the music festival experience - some of us for the first time - in an attempt to understand what moves people to share.
Once we understood what moments drive fans to social media to express their excitement, it was our goal to find ways to create more of these moments and make sharing as effortless as possible.
How Lollapalooza built a cohesive fan community
The compulsive need to be seen and validated by others is fundamental to human nature. As social creatures, we turn to social media to showcase our favourite experiences in hopes that our friends and family will share that moment with us. Few people understand this driving desire better than Patrick Dentler, Marketing Director and Eric Klein, Director, Analytics and Technology of C3 Presents: the world-renowned event management company that organizes Lollapalooza every year.
“Our fans want to see themselves on our website,” said Patrick Dentler, “Catching a glimpse of their own photo on the Jumbotron feels like they're onstage with their favourite artists for those 15 seconds of fame. It’s very rewarding.”
“We love to extend the reach of the event by showcasing the authentic experiences happening at Lollapalooza,” said Eric Klein, “Even being at home and looking at the Stream, you feel like you’re part of the community."
Combining social content on their website, within their mobile app and on massive screens at each of the main stages, the Lollapalooza social media team fostered a sense of shared experience across devices and locations. No matter which stage you were at, or even if you were sitting at home wishing you were watching live - you were part of the Lollapalooza community.
See and be seen
Lollapalooza is a massive event. With eight mind-blowing stages, hundreds of artists and thousands of attendees, it would seem impossible to experience everything at once. But with one tap of the Lollapalooza native mobile app, fans could see in real-time exactly what was going on at the other end of the grounds. When waiting for their favourite band to come onstage, fans could watch the grand finales of other artists wrapping up from the perspective of fellow fans on the Jumbotron displays. Even envious fans at home watched the live stream of the concert and scrolled through the social posts on the Lollapalooza website, feeling as if they were right there at the festival.
Social media also empowered the Lollapalooza social media and security teams with thousands of on-the-ground eyes tweeting and posting to Instagram in real-time throughout the festival grounds. Geotargeting helped their team pinpoint exactly where magical moments (or mishaps) were occurring, so they could either feed (or extinguish) fires immediately. Even from inside a trailer backstage, the social media team had an omnipresent perspective of the entire festival thanks to social media.
Our team at Tradable Bits experienced the excitement of seeing ourselves on the Lollapalooza Stream on the first day we arrived. We were so proud to be part of the amazing festival community that we dropped everything to take a screenshot to share with the rest of the team back home (and maybe make them a little jealous…)
How your event can rock social media
You don’t have to be a massive event like Lollapalooza to build a community with social media. Empowered with tools like Stream, Moderation with Trust Algorithm and Tradable Bits API, any event can harness fan enthusiasm and encourage attendees to share their own phenomenal experiences online.
Contact us to chat about your vision for the social media strategy at your next event.