Almost 30,000 people enjoyed the classic sounds of the Orchestra over this February’s three events.
Melbourne Symphony Orchestras free events have become known to create a great soundtrack to summer in the city; bringing timeless music and talented artists together with a sunset backdrop at Melbourne’s most famous outdoor venue. For many years MSO has struggled to remain relevant with the younger generation, but we see Sidney Myer music bowl’s free events program assist in bridging the gap and attracting a much younger audience for MSO.
Unfortunately we have seen many of the music festivals (future music) and film events (Tropfest), move onto ‘greener pastures,’ so it was exciting yet a little surreal to see such a culturally diverse, yet younger audience. I was astounded at the younger demographic that were present. This shaped quite an extraordinary picture of young people drinking and enjoying a classical orchestra surrounded by families with children, students, grandparents, overseas travellers and passers by on their way home from work. The majority was however made up of Generation Y.
MSO uses these free events to promote special discounted ticket prices as free advertising to a wider audience mainly in this younger demographic. They were also heavily promoting their upcoming ‘back to the future’ concert with a DeLorean time machine which was turing a lot of heads from the younger crowd. The sponsor choice also makes things rather obvious with the likes of Summersalt festival and Melbourne University being key sponsors. Aligning the events with Melbourne’s Whitenight and Valentines Day also make their drive to speak to the younger community rather obvious.
We can see that the free event communication over the years have been consistantly different to that of the regular MSO coms. The advertising is a lot younger, playful and more vibrant.
It is obvious that a brand must communicate to their target audience, but how does a brand stay relevant in an ever changing market, heavily influenced by the digital age? The issue MSO can have with their communication of the brand is that it doesn’t always effectively communicate the edge or sophistication of their brand which is what can speak to a younger audience. They need to be speaking to the younger crowds to stay relevant, without alienating their loyal, older demographic. These free events not only engages with a whole new market but becomes a social engagement that people enjoy and that leave a mark. Although free events are defiantly not always an opportunity for brands, it is a really nice way to see a brand make its mark on all walks of life.