Glastonbury: the corporate brand

The corporate brand could be seen as the antithesis of the free-spirited hippy vision of a festival.

Capturing the mood: Playstation's SingStar tent
Capturing the mood: Playstation's SingStar tent

But even Glastonbury, one of the strictest on brands, has worked with corporate sponsors for more than 20 years. The key to making a successful appearance is understanding the personality of the specific festival, and adding to the experience. Be overly pushy at your peril.

'We don't do the hard sell,' explains Sony Computer Entertainment UK's Fargher, who is managing media for PlayStation at Glastonbury this year. 'Consumers don't want to be overly sold to. If you brand everything it looks too corporate. You need to fit into the festival environment.'

Instead PlayStation, which has been active at festivals for the past 15 years and the past two at Glastonbury, hosts two areas at the festival to promote the game SingStar. It provides a tent where attendees can sing their favourite tracks on stage as well as watch well-known artists. This year, the brand has snared Belinda Carlisle and Vanilla Ice to perform - their songs are SingStar's most popular.

Pictures and video clips of people performing will be posted online and on Facebook, giving festival-goers a reason to engage with the brand post-festival. The company sees a spike in the number of downloads of its songs after each festival attended.

It also runs the only late-night artist/VIP bar at the festival, managed by retained PR agency John Doe Communications. Pictures of celebrities inside the area are sent out via newswires to secure coverage in entertainment and celebrity media.

'The product needs to be part of the narrative about the all-encompassing festival experience and provide interesting content with your brand at the core,' says Fargher. 'It's not good if you make consumers feel they've just stepped into Westfield.'

The charity

The festival

The artist

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