The Feedback Mobile Lab has returned (finally!) from Bonnaroo. Here at HQ, we continued to monitor Twitter feeds for ‘Roo, but those in the field have returned with video treats and observations about social media use at the festival.
Notes from the Home Front
When you think of Bonnaroo what pops into your head? Certainly not Brazil! Believe it or not, the Manchester festival seems to be quite popular in this South American country as demonstrated by the surprising number of tweets in Portuguese.
On Friday the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) posted an article entitled, “PR’s Role in Building Bonnaroo,” highlighting PR’s role in the evolution of the festival. In essence, the PRSA attempts to take credit for Bonnaroo’s success, and seems to discredit the festivals original crowd and perceived purpose. We found it comical that the article was tweeted almost a week after its posting, used poor grammar, and came out when Bonnaroo attendance was low in comparison with recent years.
Saturday afternoon’s World Cup match between the United States and England was expected to be a popular topic among festival tweeters. However, surprisingly few tweets circulated around the world’s most popular sporting event over the weekend. Much to our dismay, Bonnaroo was a little late starting the game’s live video stream, causing ‘Roo-goers to miss the opening ceremony.
The most common themes of the weekend centered around the heat and the bands. Extreme temperatures caused tweeters to vocalize their discontent, but who could blame them? On Friday, Nashville was reported to have a heat index of 100! ‘Roo goers, likewise, expressed their satisfaction/dissatisfaction with band performances on Twitter. Reviews posted by Spin! and Rolling Stone magazines were frequently linked; however, it is indescernable if this was by those at ‘Roo or those at home living vicariously through the opinion of others. Our hearts were captured by The New York Times’ “4 Word Review” – short, sweet, and simple.
Another favorite of ‘Roo fans was Aziz Ansari’s photo with Beyonce and JayZ (http://bit.ly/d5005G) is staggering with 100 retweets.
Notes from the Field
In a previous post (Feedback’s Off To Bonnaroo 2010), we mentioned some of the apps the Feedback team was would be testing in the field. Well test they did! Here are some of their findings.
The biggest issue at the festival, by unanimous vote, was cell and wi-fi service. According to Dean (@dbrowell), Bonnaroo’s problem is that it has an end customer that is savvier than they are. They need the technology to accommodate them. In spite of this, though, our field agents were able to get a pretty good idea of how some of these apps worked.
The team agreed that the official Bonnaroo app, while an improvement from last year, still has a few kinks to work out. The schedule feature worked well, but Road Trip was virtually useless. Bonnaroo radio’s purchase feature, while a good idea, was ineffective. This function could greatly benefit bands, provided Bonnaroo and Apple can get it operating next year.
In the eyes of soccer fan Jeff (@ideaman), the FIFA app worked very well. A banner for MobiTV ran across the top, and for $9.00 he was able to sign up for the service and watch live matches streamed to his iPhone.
Hot Potato, while a cool app, did not achieve the level of adoption we had hoped for. It seems we were a bit ahead of the curve on that one though, because today an updated and much more efficient version of the app is available. Another new app, FriendMapper, was interesting, but likewise had glitches. Friends have to be logged in for it to work properly because it doesn’t automatically find and geotag you. The team believes that partnering with events or vendors would likely help remedy this issue and make the app more user friendly.
This is just the tip of the iceberg for observations from the field. Feedbackers at Bonnaroo have seen some things no man should see. Stay tuned for future updates and detailed reports on the utilization and success of social media at Bonnaroo.
Before we part, we at Feedback would like to send our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Matt Sloan. His untimely death was a shock and tragedy. May his memory rock on.