Consumer - Carling's music-fest moves to Manchester

Campaign: Carling Live 24 Client: Carling PR team: Cake Timescale: March-May 2005 Budget: About £35,000

Last year, Carling Live 24 enabled music lovers to watch back-to-back live bands across London from 7am on Saturday until 7am on Sunday. This year, Cake extended the concept to Manchester and held events in both cities (in April and May), challenging journalists to endure the full 24 hours of non-stop music.


To emphasise Carling's association with live music and drive awareness of the fact that the Live 24 concept had developed beyond London. To create demand for tickets in the capital and Manchester, and generate national media coverage.

Strategy and Plan

Cake booked newsworthy performers such as Kaiser Chiefs, Ian Brown and Pete Doherty, to guarantee coverage in the tabloid newspapers and drive awareness of the event among the brand's target audience - young male Carling drinkers.

It even structured the shows with media coverage in mind, such as putting the Kaiser Chiefs on at lunchtime (an unusual slot for such a high-profile band) and creating a unique recording-studio gig for Elbow.

The team pushed the 24-hour angle as the events' unique selling point and challenged journalists to consume 24 hours of live music in a press pack that included cans of Carling, imagery from the complementary ad campaign and quotes from the artists.

Cake also posted a music survey on the website, offering the chance to win tickets to the Live 24 shows and a year's supply of Carling. The survey results were included in the press pack, while gossip stories were released about the bands in the run-up to the shows.

Preview articles and listings entries were secured in a wide variety of media. Cake contacted newspapers to set up preview artist interviews, while broadcasters were given interviews with singers on the day of the shows. Journalists were taken to the venues throughout Live 24 on specially chartered media buses, and were supplied with food and drink.

Measurement and Evaluation

Preview interviews with artists were run by Metro, BBC 6 Music, Manchester Evening News, the Daily Star, Soccer AM, The Sun and the Daily Record. The events were covered by The Sun, the Daily Mirror, Daily Star, The Guardian, Evening Standard, Camden New Journal and Manchester Evening News. Broadcast coverage included pieces on MTV, Radio One and Manchester's Key 103.

Live 24 also achieved widespread online pick-up, with many national newspaper and music websites running announcements and reviews.


More than 17,000 people attended 13 venues throughout the 24 hours of live music in London and Manchester, and at least 27,000 pints of Carling were sold, according to Cake.

Most gigs in London and Manchester sold out in a couple of weeks - ahead of schedule.

Daily Star music editor Carl Stroud says: 'Carling Live 24 was an immensely enjoyable day out and the Cake team was consummately professional throughout the 15 or so hours it was on duty.

'With 20 or so boozed-up hacks it could quite easily have descended into farce, but the day was nothing less than a triumph of planning, execution and delicious lager.'

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