In the world of music and performance, Coldplay appearing at Glastonbury is a big deal. But with clever use of digital marketing, it can become a global phenomenon.
Last night’s performance by the band was a case in point, and can be defined as a content marketing concert. The whole show was clearly carefully choreographed to create the biggest possible impact at the event, in front of 80,000 fans, on TV screens – BBC for one was broadcasting the show live – and online.
View twitter comments, and music fans of all persuasions – and not just traditional Coldplay ones – were universally positive about what they were witnessing. Anyone who has been following the Twitter storm about BBC’s Top Gear will know what it looks like when things go wrong.
But Coldplay, who have in the past been a Marmite experience, loved and hated, had got it right. Boy, did they get it right!
In doing so, they will reap global rewards for putting on a good show that is loved, appreciated and respected by most. The media plaudits soon afterwards, with claims that social media had them as the best band in the world, proved that point.
It may well have looks effortless, but clearly a lot of thought had gone into planning all the elements of the show. And a lot of deft skill, mostly shown by Chris Martin, was used to pull all the strings on stage to make it work.
In effect, apart from putting on a stunning musical and stage performance, there were many other key elements designed to create magical moments, stories, blogging comment, reviewing and social media opportunities – content marketing – that will give the event strong and positive life long after it had ended.
These concert content moments spanned generations, they demonstrated positive and attractive values, made use of the latest technology, and left an indelible emotional impact on literally millions of global viewers. Here are just a few of them:
1. A tribute to Viola Beach – the UK band whose careers were cut short in a terrible road accident while touring – was greeted rapturously and helped to connect Coldplay to a whole new generation of younger audiences.
2. Guest apperance by Barry Gibb – seamlessly moving on to having pop legend Gibb from the Bee Gees on stage for a sing-along, to tackle, this time, the grey market, and position Coldplay closely with a musical legend.
3. Karaoke performance of My Way by Glastonbury organiser Michael Eavis – Coldplay have probably sealed their reputation as one of the Glasto legends themselves.
4. Gwyneth Paltrow, Chris Martin’s ex-wife, and kids – acting as backing singers on stage for one song, giving the celebrity gossip and lifestyle writers plenty to write about for weeks.
5. Flashing wristbands – not new technology, but well received, and gives each fan something to talk about among friends and on social media for years to come.
6. Audience chat – Chris Martin followed Adele from Saturday night in spending a lot of time chatting with the audience, as much as you can chat with 80,000 people at once, talking with band members, stopping songs and starting again. An approach that reminds all that they are human, normal and fallable. It also gives music bloggers lots go chew over.
It was a bravura performance. It will help define Coldplay for the next 5 years. The band will draw marketing benefit, not least financially, from this one night for years and years to come.
Well done them. They have embraced fully the digital generation. Their own – probably vast – backroom team are pulling all their own digital marketing levers through Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, and many more channels. It’s not all spontaneous and effortless. But then success and longevity in the music industry never has been.