Slingshot Sponsorship Appointed as Exclusive Sponsorship Agency for Snowboxx Festival 9th October, 2014

The highlight of the winter festival calendar – Snowboxx Festival, has appointed Slingshot Sponsorship as their exclusive sponsorship agency. The festival is to be held in March 2015 at the beautiful resort of Alp D’Huez, France.

Since its inception in 2013, Snowboxx festival has hosted attendees from across the globe.  A week long snow escape, Snowboxx, is the perfect ski holiday – granting audiences the chance to cruise alpine pistes by day and dance to world renowned DJ’s by night.  The festival will take over the town of Alp D’Huez this year, creating festival hubs, open air stages, après terrace parties and late night club parties.

With world renowned DJ’s headlining last year, this year’s festival promises to be the best yet. Festival Director, Aiden Levin stated: “we are delighted to be working with Slingshot Sponsorship. Snowboxx was built on the premise to offer something fresh to the festival market and we feel that Slingshot is the agency to help us maximise on this opportunity.”

Snowboxx not only focusses on the snow and music – the festival offers outdoor pool parties, world record attempts, tropical tea parties, live art on the snow and karaoke on the chairlifts. With a new location as well as bigger events and artists lined up for 2015, Snowboxx is shaping up to be the festival of the season.

Jackie Fast, Managing Director, Slingshot Sponsorship stated: “we were really impressed by the rate Snowboxx has expanded in two years. The festival market is becoming ever more saturated, so it was really refreshing to come across a festival like Snowboxx, which offers a truly unique platform for its audience and brands.”

Snowboxx festival will be hosted in March 2015 at Alp D’Huez ski resort, France.

Does Sponsorship Enhance the Festival experience?? 18th September, 2012

So it’s the middle of yet another mild British summer and I’m standing in the middle of a muddy field, surrounded by an eclectic array of people listening to very loud music and to cap it all off it’s raining – who would have imagined this would be the perfect environment for brand engagement.

Music festivals have become an important and developing platform for sponsorship by larger and smaller brands alike. For the festival organisers sponsorship is an important revenue stream, and from the brand’s perspective, the sponsorship of music festivals and events provides opportunities for bespoke communication and interaction with the predominantly young and receptive festival audience. However, are the brands actually concerned about improving the festival experience or are they just in it for their own benefit?

Whether or not corporate sponsorship activation should be allowed within the festival arena is the subject of much debate, with many events such as the Green Man Festival in the Brecon Beacons adopting the traditional ‘Early Glastonbury’ or ‘Woodstock’ approach of zero-branding. However, the real question that should be asked is whether or not the sponsorship actually benefits the experience of the attendees. After all, this is the sole reason for attending the festival in the first place.

Festival goers are passionate about music but most go to festivals first and foremost for the overall experience, something that can be looked back on for years after the event has passed. With this in mind, surely the primary objective of the festival organiser is to ensure that festival goers have the best time possible and if brand activations can help achieve this then why should they be sidelined?

In a study by Havas Sports and Entertainment of six festivals across six European countries and involving 2,244 respondents, they found that 65% of music festival goers believe brands improve the festival experience; with 60% interacting with two or more brands at festivals and 85% liking the brand activations they visited.

In the case of the Green Man and others, it appears that festival organisers do not want to draw too much attention to the sponsors in fear that this would have a negative effect on the integrity of the event. However, Havas’s study does much to dispel the view that music festivals are a dangerous arena for brand sponsors and suggests brands are a welcome part of the festival experience if they develop activations that add value.

Sponsorship therefore delivers a three-way benefit, as the more attendees that partake in and enjoy the activations, the stronger the relationship with the brands and the event. In the over-saturated and intensely competitive festival market of today, festival organisers are constantly looking for new ways in which to attract and retain their audience. As a result, engagement is becoming increasingly expensive, with sponsorship therefore proving to be a highly cost-effective method in which to enhance the overall festival experience.

Are UK Music Festivals Created with Cookie Cutters? Outlook Festival Proves Not 4th September, 2012

The Slingshot Sponsorship team just got back from an amazing week in Croatia at Outlook Festival – Winner of the UK’s Best Overseas Festival 2011.  It was an amazing event and we arrived home – albeit a bit dusty, sun burnt and tired – with so much enthusiasm for next year’s festival and sponsorship opportunities around it I wrote this blog en route.

But before I begin, I will first explain that the term ‘cookie cutter’ means the same thing as carbon copy or effectively just the ‘same’.  Apparently (which I’ve just found out from my British colleagues) you do not use this term in the UK.  It makes a better picture than carbon copy, so we’ll use ‘cookie cutter’ for the time being.

Now that is cleared up…

During our trip we spoke to a number of brands who came out to join us and the same conversation kept coming up – that UK music festivals so often mirror each other and rarely offer a truly unique experience – they are cookie cutters of themselves.  Same stage, similar line ups, same parks, and even the same brand sponsors!  Now, of course, this doesn’t include every festival, but on the whole the feedback we’ve had is that brands have started to fall out of love (which equates to a loss of ROI) from something that has been a stronghold in our sponsorship industry.

Because of this, brands who are interested and align themselves to music have started to consider new platforms in music and other music events that feature a UK audience, but position themselves in a different environment whether that is music genres or geological location.  Outlook Festival combines both.

Engagement with a more unique event can be tailor-made for sponsors and the experience stands these brands out from their competitors in an often uncluttered market as they are more forward thinking and attract less bandwagon followers.  This allows sponsors to showcase and create a more genuine, forward-thinking, and most of all memorable brand experience.

My music festival sponsorship tip – If you are a brand sponsor, consider looking outside of the usual.  If you are a music festival in need of sponsorship, start considering how important differentiation of your festival is to ensure you are able to effectively drive brand relationships with your audience.

And just to share, here are some of our Outlook Festival Instagram moments from the team: