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Don’t believe the hype?. Events MISmanagement: learning from failure

Don’t believe the hype?. Events MISmanagement: learning from failure

Vlachos, Peter ORCID: 0000-0002-4870-9006 (2022) Don’t believe the hype?. Events MISmanagement: learning from failure. In: Brown, T, Higson, P and Gaston, L, (eds.) Events MISmanagement: Learning from failure. Goodfellow Publishers Limited, Oxford, pp. 159-181. ISBN 978-1915097101; 978-1915097118; 978-1915097125 (doi:

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The ubiquitous availability and use of digital and social media combined with the transitory nature of live events offers fertile ground for event mis-marketing. When event marketing efforts fail through over-promising but under-delivering, the negative impact potentially affects not only the event's own brand, but also that of the venue, the event sub-sector, and the events industry more widely. Live events are classic service goods (Zeitmal et al., 1985; Brassington and Pettitt, 2006) that are intangible, inseparable, heterogeneous, perishable, and lack ownership. As service goods, live events are particularly vulnerable to gaps between user perceptions and perceived experiences (Fitzsimmons and Fitzsimmons, 2013). As symbolic goods (Bourdieu, 1985) live events play a significant role in post-industrial production and consumption. In this chapter we propose that the ephemeral and often speculative nature of live events combined with the ubiquitous availability of digital marketing tools together provide fertile ground for events marketing mismanagement, as illustrated by failed events such as the Fyre Festival (Burrough, 2017). Typical event marketing errors include dissonance in attendee expected and perceived quality, miscalculation of demand (volume and flow), dilution of original event objectives, and poor complaint handling.
The chapter aims to achieve three objectives:
• to articulate and assess critically the concepts of marketing, 'hype', and ‘buzz’ as applied to live events,
• to explain how the phenomenon of 'marketing hype' relates and applies to the live events industry, and
• to analyse examples of causality and impact of hype and marketing mismanagement in live events.
Illustrative cases are drawn from several sub-sectors of the live events industry, including family events (Powell, 2018; Gill, 2019), food and drink festivals (Powell, 2016; Doyle Higgins, 2018), and music events and festivals (Oppenheim, 2016; Loughrey, 2019). A model of event mismarketing is proposed. The chapter concludes with a summary of lessons drawn and recommendations on how event managers, event producers, and event marketers can avoid similar errors in the future.

Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords: marketing, events; advertising ethics; promotion; buzz; online advertising
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GV Recreation Leisure
H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Business
Faculty of Business > Department of Marketing, Events & Tourism
Faculty of Business > Tourism Research Centre
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 13 Jan 2023 10:48

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