Fall is officially upon us here in Chicago and with it comes an end to summer, or as some would say, an end to festival season. Chicago is home to many outdoor music festivals over the summer; the biggest and most recognizable being, Lollapalooza. This year Lollapalooza celebrated its 25th anniversary: showcasing 170+ artists and drawing crowds larger than 300,000 music enthusiasts and festival goers. Sprawled across Chicago’s Grant Park and Columbus Avenue, the three to four day music festival has continuously impressed patrons by listening to customer feedback and improving upon the previous year’s delivery. As the nature of customer experience continues to evolve, festivals like Lollapalooza are adapting their strategy to provide a more seamless experience from point of purchase through post-interaction, allowing festival goers to focus on the most important thing: the music.
Focused on providing customers with a festival experience, music events such as Lollapalooza utilize technology to support both festival management and execution as well as provide customers with a means to plan, navigate, and enjoy everything the festival offers. Lollapooloza’s mobile application and electronic wristband are two examples of the festival utilizing technology for the customer experience.
Lollapalooza’s mobile application, Lolla App, affords users the ability to do things such as creating a personal line-up and activate Lolla Cashless. Festivals developing their own mobile app is nothing new as year after year the virtual experience improves. Instead of only being able to view a personally created lineup, users of the Lolla App can now save the line up in a phone note, share their lineup via message, and post it to social media. Music lovers aren’t the only ones to utilize the app – vendors also leverage the technology to send out push notifications to check out specific booths throughout the day, which attendees can easily locate by using the mobile application’s map.
Acting as more than just a ticket for entry, Wristbands are now leveraged as virtual wallets. With Lolla Cashless, ticket holders have the option to sync their credit card information to their wristband, enabling a cashless festival experience. With a simple swipe of the wrist, customers who activated Lolla Cashless, used their wristband to purchase items at the various vendors and bars throughout Grant Park. Lolla Cashless reduced the need for patrons to carry cash and credit cards by providing the convenience and security of their wallet secured to their wrist.
While Customer Experience relies on data and touch points, ranging from analytics to instant feedback, the backbone of any organization’s Customer Experience is always grounded in one thing – the people. By listening to the needs and concerns of previous attendees, Lollapalooza developed several unique experiences that go above and beyond what is expected from the festival industry.
Lolla Bodega had all of the typical convenience needs of an attendee covered during the 4-day weekend. Selling everything from sunscreen and ponchos to fruits and healthy snacks, this one stop shop provided patrons with a way to quickly buy goods and refuel between shows. Customers could also re-purchase certain convenience items thrown out by security.
Strategically placed throughout Grant Park, water stations, medical tents, and information kiosks were easily accessible and widely used. Water stations sponsored by Camelback allowed patrons to stop and re-hydrate near each stage. In addition to staying hydrated, Lollapalooza’s new cooling bus provided attendees a place to sit and cool off from the hot summer heat. Located throughout the park, information kiosks placed in high traffic areas rendered directions and quick info to customers. Last but not least the Festival’s multiple medical tents provided relief to any attendees needing medical attention.
Enabled by technology and driven by the fans, Lollapalooza and music festivals around the world aim to deliver exceptional customer experience to define themselves and create an unparalleled music experience. What was your Lollapalooza experience? Please share in the comments below!