Case Study: Maximizing Social Media For A Special Live Event

Above-beyond-group-therapy-50Freelance digital music marketer Lucy Blair recently shared a case study called "How to Win with your Music Event" at the Midemblog focused on digital marketing related to a very special event. EDM group Above & Beyond celebrated the 50th episode of their weekly radio show Group Therapy with a live radio show in London drawing an audience of 10,000. The event, ABGT050, was a big success and the use of social media before, during and after resulted in a case study worth considering more closely.

Above & Beyond celebrated the 50th airing of their Group Therapy Radio show at London's Alexandra Palace in October. The event sold out with 10,000 in attendance shown in the above thumbnail (click to see crowd) from Above & Beyond's blog.

At the time Lucy Blair was digital marketing manager for Anjunabeats, a label created and run by the members of Above & Beyond. Her case study, "How to Win with your Music Event," offers plenty of detail and some interesting insights.

A few things that stuck out to me:

Above & Beyond did their first Google+ Hangout in preparation for the event. That included a photo and video contest via Instagram.

A special section on Above & Beyond's website was created by LessThan3 to display entries from the contest.

Given that the Group Therapy show claims 30 million worldwide listeners, one would expect a lot of entries. They got 800 which is actually a lot though it doesn't sound like much compared to 30 million.

Lucy Blair says that, in the process, the Above & Beyond Instagram account's followers "grew by +657% during the competition."

Given that they now have over 42 thousand followers on Instagram, I'm assuming we're talking about tens of thousands of new followers from a contest that had only 800 entries.

Part of the power of the contest was that it was tied into a Google+ Hangout and so was part of a pre-event for the big show.

The Google+ Hangout drew "over 500 concurrent viewers" but has had 20 thousand views on YouTube since posting.

Again, 500 doesn't sound like a lot compared to millions of listeners but 20 thousand views for an online event that drew hundreds is quite a response.

In addition, the contest page would have drawn visitors back to the band's site rather than simply handing them over to social networks.

This combination of multiple social networks combined with an on-site home continued with the live show for which they built an on-site hub to tie together social media activity during the event. The social media response was powerful but here's what Blair noted about the on-site hub:

"We had tens of thousands more chat messages via the online hub than FB or Twitter shares – invest in the power of your own platforms and engage fans via your website and mailing list instead of just focusing on social networks."

"For a headline event like this in particular, you can generate far greater engagement by creating a community on your own platforms."

Blair has a lot more details in her case study but I was most struck by two observations:

A contest that draws hundreds of devoted fans, a subset, can lead to social media interest and involvement by many more.

Having a solid homebase can not only tie your social network outposts together but lead to even stronger engagement on one's home site.


Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (Twitter/Facebook) is building a writing hub at Flux Research. To suggest topics about music tech, DIY music biz or music marketing for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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1 Comment

  1. Hey Clyde,
    Thanks for the insightful post! It’s nice to see people noticing how effective certain electronic musicians are in regards to marketing! Above & Beyond, Pretty Lights, and the entire OWSLA crew are all pioneering inventive ways of making the most of digital platforms and involving their fan-bases.
    The multiplier effect on the initial hangout is astounding (40x) and worth noting that creating a unique experience for your fans that can be shared freely can have tremendous dividends. Hopefully more artists follow suit!

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