Raising the profile of the UK’s only black-tie boutique festival, Henley Festival 2019

Following the huge success of our work on the 2016, 2017 and 2018 editions of Henley Festival, we were reappointed to run the publicity campaign for Henley Festival for the fourth time in 2019 to boost ticket sales by delivering a segmented, high-calibre, profile building campaign focusing on the diverse programme of the festival including music, comedy, food and visual arts.

The Work

The UK’s only black-tie boutique festival, with a capacity of 26,000. Henley Festival’s champagne lawns, street theatre, cabaret, fireworks, outdoor sculpture, live art, pop-up restaurants and Michelin starred field restaurant run by Angela Hartnett, take place over five days from 10th – 14th July, with a spectacular setting along the river Thames.

Artists performing at the 2019 festival included Boy George, Jessie J, Tom Odell, Jo Whiley, Bjorn Again and Royal Philharmonic Orchestra as well as comedy from the likes of Ed Byrne, Andy Hamilton and Julian Clary

Our teams worked to deliver an integrated, coordinated audience-led campaign that focused on building awareness of the festival across all media and broadcast. Using a segmented approach, we created distinctive communication channels for each branch of the festival including music, art, food and comedy.

In addition to running a sizzling PR campaign for the festival from February 2019 to July 2019, we also ran the festival’s on-site media tent, including managing press and photographers’ on-site, organising festival accreditation for press, as well as setting up interviews with festival performers in the run up and during the festival itself. We also worked closely with the management teams of all artists to create press opportunities for all performers in the line-up and to secured blanket coverage for the festival including previews, features and interviews.

We secured several high-profile interviews with artists across the line-up including

 

  • Tom Odell and Jo Wiley for BBC World News
  • Bjorn Again for ITV – This Morning and Sky Sunrise
  • Jessie J for Press Association
  • Julian Clary for The Daily Telegraph

We also secured an impressive list of previews and listings in national newspapers such as

 

  • Daily Mail
  • The Sun
  • The Times
  • The Daily Express
  • Daily Mirror
  • OK
  • HELLO
  • Country & Townhouse
  • Saga
  • The Lady

Reuters also filed a news story on Theresa May attending the festival which was circulated nationally and internationally reaching an impressive number of high-calibre publications globally including New York Times.

 

The Results

Over the course of the seven-month campaign Midas PR secured 1240 pieces of coverage across all media with a total reach of 55 million and total PR value of £2.66 million. During the festival week we secured 447 pieces of coverage with a reach of 30.2 million while 92 press attended the festival.

Reviews of Henley Festival 2019 included

 

  • “…the country’s most glamorous festival” HELLO Magazine
  • “The music line-up is always stellar, but if it’s festival food that gets you excited, you won’t find a better culinary line-up than this one on the banks of the river Thames” Country & Townhouse
  • “With a Great Gatsby extravaganza including free-flowing champagne and fabulous fireworks, it’ll be the glammest fest of the year.” The Sun – Fabulous Magazine
  • “…the UK’s favourite black-tie festival returns in true Great Gatsby style.” OK Magazine
  • “The line-up for this riverside black tie festival is truly eclectic” Mail On Sunday