10 Tips on How to Organise a Successful Festival
During the summer months, the UK is rich in a huge range of different festivals, both in type and number.
16:44 12 August 2021
Glastonbury, which attracts over 200,000 people, is the largest and most high-profile, but there are hundreds of other smaller festivals that take place each year, that is until 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic struck. We'd like to think that these festivals will come back bigger and better, but of course only time will tell.
So, if you are looking to organise a new festival, here's our 10 tips which will hopefully help you along the way...
Determine the type of festival
Know your audience should be the very first item on your agenda! What type of festival do you want it to be? A music festival? A literary festival? Maybe a family festival in woodlands? Not all festivals are the same, so try to carve out a niche for your particular festival by making it different, welcoming and interesting.
Set date & location
Getting this right goes a long way in determining success. From the point of view of a brand-new festival, it needs to be both close and engaging to your target audience. Maybe in the countryside on the outskirts of a major city or conurbation might be a good start, as transport links will be good, and people won't have to travel too far to get to your festival. As for the date, check out what other festivals and events are taking place the same weekend that you have in mind - this may influence your decision!
Secure the best artists
Put simply, the bigger and more high-profile the artists, the larger your ticket sales will be. Of course, high profile artists also mean that you can increase your ticket prices, as people will expect to pay more to see world-famous stars! So, aim big from the outset! Of course, it's very difficult to attract the very best talent as these artists will gravitate towards the larger, established festivals, but you've got to start somewhere, right?
Getting a title sponsor along with smaller sponsors enables you to recoup some revenue! Again, the higher profile the festival and the artists, the easier it is to do this. Major brands will want to be associated with your event, so sell the 'Festival sponsored by..' or 'in association with...' opportunity to larger companies. At the same time, certain stages at your event offer sponsorship opportunities to smaller companies who want to be involved but who perhaps don't have the budget for the title sponsorship.
Sell, sell, sell!
Now that you've got all the basics in place, it's now time to sell the tickets in as large a volume as you can, and as quickly as you can. Engage with local, regional and national press, do some social media advertising, and get your website up to date. The last thing you need at this point is to be having sleepless nights about ticket sales. Run competitions, have a countdown to when tickets go on sale - all this type of activity builds anticipation!
Liaise with authorities
One of the most important things you'll need to do at this point is to liaise with the local authorities. Whether this is to do with food hygiene, health and safety, policing of the event, traffic regulations and other elements, this all needs to be sorted!
Define & promote your eco-credentials
The environment should be at the heart of everything you do, so work with suppliers who also buy into this vision. In your PR activities, make sure you are mentioning your eco credentials, as 25% of festival goers say that they wouldn't attend a festival if it didn't take notice of their environmental responsibilities. There's plenty of opportunities out there, including compost toilets, reusable cup system and much more, so work with trusted suppliers who will be able to assist you with this.
Work with trusted suppliers
And talking of suppliers, make sure you welcome your preferred suppliers to the site for a visit in advance so that they can gauge what they have to play with in terms of access, timings, loading and unloading, and so on. Whether you need toilets, festival furniture hire for your cafe or bar areas or other festival equipment hire, your suppliers will welcome this opportunity to visit your festival site.
Enjoy the event!
When the time comes, enjoy it! Your event is the culmination of months of work, and so take a moment to stand back and survey the scene. Hopefully there will be lots of happy, smiling visitors, all enjoying the festival. And hopefully they will be posting photos on your social media channels, liking, commenting and sharing, to spread the word for next year's event!
Say your thank-you's
Last, but by no means least, always say thank you to everyone involved in the event, whether this is the volunteers manning the car parks, right through the event director, the council, the police and your valued suppliers. Who knows, you'll probably be counting on them for next year...
So, we wish you the very best of luck when organising your festival. Rest assured that if you need festival equipment hire in London or nationwide, here in the UK we are fortunate enough to have plenty of suppliers who will be able to assist you. Good luck!