When I’m not crafting content for clients, chugging down cups of coffee, or crawling through websites, I’m usually found in a festival field writing about the bands who turn up in said fields for magazines.
Every festival feels like my Clark Kent moment. One second, I’m sitting at my desk taking on my task list in the comfiest chair known to man, the next I’m setting up tents and sleeping on deflating airbeds. And everyone you meet is doing the same – we’re all living double lives.
I can happily hop from mosh pits on the weekend to team meetings on Monday mornings. You take one hat off and put the other on. Subjects change and tones differ, but the mission remains the same: create great content.
Whether you’re writing about bands or building a brand, content is both a commodity to consume and cultural currency to generate. Guessing what content works for your business and brand isn’t easy because what the world wants is always changing. But if my time at this year’s Bloodstock, Download, and Slam Dunk festivals has taught me anything, it’s that great content can come from anywhere as long as it ticks a few boxes.
What are those boxes? Let’s find out.
You could churn out content all day if you were just thinking about your business. But if you want to build a brand and turn visitors into customers, you need to make the content they want to consume all day long.
Bloodstock Festival might be the UK’s premier extreme metal gathering, but it’s not just bands bringing the riffs all day. There’s axe-throwing, gaming arenas for all your Guitar Hero needs, and more bars than we’ve got hands in the entire office.
You might think it’s standard fare for a festival, but Bloodstock has thought about what their visitors like to do, what they want to do, and when they can do it.
Heavy metal has long been associated with Vikings and Norse mythology, so what’s better than giving your fans the chance to channel their inner Thor and throw axes for a place in Valhalla? Better yet, air guitar is synonymous with heavy metal history, so offering a front-row seat for a band of your choice to the highest scoring Guitar Hero gamer is genius.
When you press ‘publish’ on a piece of content, you’re publishing your brand’s personality. But if you want it to convert with your customers, you’ll need to give them the content they want to consume.
Bloodstock doesn’t hide behind a major host. It’s a family-run festival, and its faces are the family that runs it. Before the festival even starts, you’ll find directors Adam and Vicky going live on Facebook and Instagram to give updates, run competitions,and find out what their fans want. They don’t posture, and they don’t pretend –they’re unapologetically them. We know this because they walk around their festival like they’re just another festival-goer.
Every piece of content that comes from Bloodstock before, during, and after is authentic. Bloodstock has built itself from a one-day indoor event to a four-day outdoor 20,000-capacity festival by being the festival made by fans for fans. We can see they love what they’ve created, so as consumers, we feel that dedication and passion and love it back.
If you put yourself into your brand’s content, your customers will buy into it. They don’t want you topromise them your product will give them the world; they just want what it does and why they will benefit from it.
We live in a world moving faster than the speed of light. Everything changes all of the time. So your content must exist in the moment. Don’t be afraid to react to what’s happening around your business because if it’s important to you, it’s usually important to your customers, too.
Take bands at Download and Bloodstock. Rise Against led rallying cries and chants in support of Ukraine. Behemoth marched out on stage, setting off blue and yellow flares into the night sky. And Ukrainian quartet Jinjer were granted special exemption by the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture to exit Ukraine to come to play the festival to help their country by spreading the message.
These bands aren’t told what to say or do. They choose to do it because it’s what they believe in. And it’s topical too, so your customers are switched on to it. Those bands didn’t fall on deaf ears, they were met with Ukrainian flags and fists raised.
If your business delivers content that’s living in the moment, that’s true to what you believe in, your customers will believe in it too.
Running a business is, well…serious business.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun, either. If the pandemic taught us anything, it’s that life’s too short to be serious all the time. And festivals prove that.
Sure, there’s all the bands they’ve booked and the logistics of it all, but they aren’t afraid to have fun with it, too. Bloodstock takes its sustainability seriously, but to encourage an environmentally-friendly festival, they threw a little competition into it for festival-goers.
Rather than leave empty cups on the ground, they asked visitors to pick them up and collect them. The more cups you collect, the better rewards you get. 50 cups fetch you a free pint, 600 cups unlock a VIP upgrade, and 1000 cups let you watch a band from the side of the stage. It’s a fun way of dealing with serious things.
Whilst that’s a physical thing, content in the digital world works just the same. Sure, you can talk about your business's serious policies, but how can you make it enjoyable and engaging for those reading it?
Like time, consumers stop for no one. So, let’s get creating content to convert visitors into customers now. And if you’d like to discuss your website’s content strategy, get in touch with us today.