Courting the Cool Kids: Coachella Marketing Roundup

Celebrities, musicians, and influencer Millennials flock to the desert in April to celebrate Coachella—and brands are eager to charm them. Here are some ways the cool kids are being courted this year…

The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival kicked off this weekend, and it was three days filled with celebrities (Kylie! Kendall! Leo! Taylor!), surprise performances (Kanye! Ke$ha! Rihanna!), and, of course, plenty of brands looking to court the cool kid crowd.

Last year, the Wall Street Journal outlined the rising brand involvement in the festival, calling it an event “filled with a marketer’s dream: throngs of influential, open-minded and ready-to-spend Millennials with plenty of time to kill.” Festival schedules allow for a significant amount of down time, just waiting to be filled with visits to sponsored tents and Instagram shots of branded experiences. On top of that allure, the Millennials who attend the fest tend to be social media sharers. The hashtag #coachella currently has 1,782,384 public photos on Instagram, not including the variations of the tag that include the year and other details—and keep in mind this is an event that takes place over just two weekends each year. Many brands are eager to have a presence at an event filled with young influencers who might just spread the word about their brand. At the same time, being associated with the festival gives brands a link to current cool kid culture, and potentially an image boost.  

For Coachella 2016, H&M and Heineken continued their long-running sponsorship, and Pandora, luxury watch brand Tag Heuer, Uber, Cupcake Vineyards, and more played a role wining, dining, treating, and driving attendees. Here are some of the stand out activations of the event this year:  

Alice + Olivia See Now/Buy Now Show

Designers and…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “I like playing and talking about [Animal Crossing] with other people. It's nostalgic for me since I've been playing games from the series from a young age.”—Female, 22, PA

Which brands had the most YouTube subscribers in 2018? In media, Warner Bros. topped the list with 6.4 million subscribers, followed by BBC and ESPN. Apple beat out last year’s winner for tech PlayStation, while Red Bull and Ford remained the reigning champs of food and beverage and automotive, respectively. Finally, Nike was first place in the clothing category for the second year running, with 30,000 more subscribers than their closest competitor, Adidas. (Tubefilter)

A “Little League for esports” is fostering future esports stars—and fans for life. Super League Gaming is bringing some much-needed organization to youth competitive gaming, building teams of young Minecraft, League of Legends, and Clash Royal players, helping them train and compete. But the program isn’t just for the next Ninja; just like traditional sports, kids get a sense of community among like-minded friends. (AP News)

Nielsen reports that Millennials actually consume less media than older demos, but more of it is digital. While the average adult consumes over ten hours of content a day, 18-34-year-olds spend less than eight hours with media. And the heaviest smartphone users are 35-49-year-olds, who spend 20 minutes more each day on average with their phones than Millennials. However, the younger demo does spend 44% of their media time with digital devices, more than older demos that spend more time with TV as they age up. (THR)

Vitaminwater is wagering $100,000 that you can’t give up your smartphone for a year. Contestants have to disconnect from internet-enabled devices where “texting is a pleasant experience” for 365 days and post a pic to Twitter or Instagram explaining why they need the digital detox. And when the year’s up, they have to prove it. Considering that 65% of 13-36-year-olds told Ypulse they would be unable to unplug from their smartphones for a week, earning that $100,000 may be harder than they know. (Fortune)

Hard seltzer revenue skyrocketed over 400% over the past 18 months. White Claw leads the way for the category with top-of-the-results organic search (they’re the number one Google result for “hard seltzer”) and a social media presence that focuses on health and wellness-related imagery. Sparkling water is already one of Millennials’ favorite things to drink, and its hard version could rise through the ranks of their top alcoholic beverages. (Gartner)

Quote of the Day: “People call [video game culture] nerdy but I see nerdy as a positive connotation.”—Female, 28, MA

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