Innocent brings back ‘brand building’ festival where people are banned from using tech

Innocent’s ‘weekend off the grid’ festival has returned for a second year as the drinks maker looks to build its brand among attendees as a contrast to the product-led marketing of late.

The free-to-attend event for 1,500 people, who are blocked from accessing WiFi and discouraged from sharing the experience on social media, launched for the first time last year.

At the time, brand activation manager Jamie Sterry told The Drum that despite not seeming like commercially viable propostion, it actually made a lot of marketing sense and was ultimately an experiment in what to do with a small portion of its budget that had been liberated from the burden of proving ROI.

Lauding its success, this year the festival will once again ask people to switch-off and enjoy the music line-up, yoga and mindfulness classes, banquet and various other activities. To measure it’s impact, Innocent will simply be looking at how much conversation it generates among press and consumers both in the lead up to and during the event.

“Innocent Unplugged may be disconnected from social media and technology, but we feel that the core of the idea is interesting enough to drive word of mouth – that’s why PR is incredibly important for promoting and amplifying this event,” said Sterry.

“Over the last few years our ATL messaging has been product lead, so we want to use the Unplugged weekend to deliver brand messaging at ground level.”

It has hired PR agency Taylor Herring to help dive this. A phased news generation programme has already been established, while a number of stunts and pieces of branded content will also emerge in the run-up to the festival.

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