<< Back to articles

Avoid Confusing Line-up Announcements for music Festivals.

Andy Robertson

Announcements for artist line-ups at summer music festivals usually start at the end of December and typically run through to May. Anyone not familiar with music festivals may find many of these announcements obscure and seriously lacking in essential information. What can festival organisers do to improve how they present their line-up announcements.

Historically music festivals have relied on a physical poster plus leaflets to announce their line-ups and was a one-time production that did not take account of later changes although the poster designs were usually very impactful. The ‘poster’ is still used by most organisers but is now in an electronic format and can easily be edited in real time. The poster remains a key element of the festival branding, however, it doesn't always clearly convey key information, how can organisers improve the presentation of their line-up announcements. 

The timing of any announcements is key for may organisers and relies on artist booking confirmations among many other factors. Early announcements of headliners can help to boost early bird ticket sales but at the risk of having an incomplete line-up that looks light. Leave announcements too close to the festival dates and organisers risk losing ticket sales to competing events. Most organisers now release their line-ups in waves, possible up to three times as this helps spread ticket sales and keeps the festival in the news. Related poster artwork will be updated in line with any artist additions or changes. 

Logical Presentation.
Different organisers prefer to present their line-ups in different ways, some opting for a simple alphabetical order whilst others separate by genre or by headliner importance. Poster artwork can help with visual impact by intelligent use of fonts with headliners at the top in large fonts and support artists in small fonts underneath. This tiering and visual hierarchy can help readers quickly ascertain headliners and support acts. Further use of date and stage splits can assist in how festival-goers want to organise their attendance. 

Include Essential Information. 
The poster artwork can be very creative and impactful but if the font design is not carefully considered it can be difficult to read. Impactful artwork with good festival branding is great but readers often find it difficult to find essential information and it is not unusual for dates, locations, genre types and contact information to be buried somewhere in tiny fonts that are not easy to read or find quickly. Details of social media links, telephone numbers and website links should be easily visible. 

Communication Strategies. 
Although the ‘poster’ can be key to any line-up announcement it is only part of the communication mix. A well-crafted press announcement should contain all the relevant information about the event including artists, dates, location and where and when to buy tickets. A good network of friendly journalists can help to get press releases published, usually allowing social media and website links to be included. The poster artwork is just an accompanying visual that media journalists may or may not include. The press announcement and poster artwork should be posted on all social media channels and the festival website at the same time. It is not uncommon for announcements to be made to the media with other channels not being updated or synched. If organisers have any doubts, it is an easy process to get an announcement and poster checked by someone unfamiliar with the festival to test understanding so that changes can be made before going public. 

For festival organisers planning their events using a software management platform like Festival Pro gives them all the functionality they need manage every aspect of their event logistics. The guys who are responsible for this software have been in the front line of event management for many years and the features are built from that experience and are performance artists themselves. The Festival Pro platform is easy to use and has comprehensive features with specific modules for managing artists, contractors, venues/stages, vendors, volunteers, sponsors, guestlists, ticketing, cashless payments and contactless ordering.

Image by Tumisu via Pixabay

Andy Robertson
Share To:

<< Back to articles

Contact us

Get in touch to discuss your requirements.

US: +1 424 485 0220 (USA)

UK: +44 207 060 2666 (United Kingdom)

AU: +61 (2) 8357 0793 (Australia)

NZ: +64 (0)9887 8005 (New Zealand)

Or use our contact form here.