Virgin Media harness the power of music and live events to engage consumers

As music fans return to festivals with a heightened sense of community and togetherness, brands are able to assist in creating unforgettable experiences

Georgie Moreton

Assistant Editor, BITE


The summer music festival season is now well and truly back underway and fans can finally have the summer they’ve long been awaiting. 2020 saw fans watch on as week by week their favourite events were cancelled or postponed but now with lockdown easing and vaccine roll-outs well underway, confidence in live events is rebuilding and appetite for live music has never been stronger. With festivals like Reading and Leeds even facilitating the vaccine roll out last week, brands are now also looking to get involved and engage music fans. One such brand is Virgin Media, which is giving customers the chance to win a festival-themed package of prizes and experiences in its latest summer campaign. 

Virgin Media’s ‘Summer Jams’ online campaign was created and devised by RAPP, and sees a carefully curated list of incredible prizes and music experiences given away each week of summer. With prizes such as VIP tickets to see Lorde in Berlin and a sequin-studded trip aboard a Virgin Voyage to see Elton John perform in Miami; music fans are being treated to money-can’t-buy experiences and all the music tech they need to “get their jam on this summer”.

The return of live events

For all the great live streams and virtual events that lockdown treated audiences to, younger generations are now largely ready to get back outside with their friends to create exciting new memories. Lockdown saw streaming music consumption grow, showing the appetite for audio and allowing consumers to discover new favourite tracks. Now, audiences are craving the experiences they’ve missed out on and armed with new playlists are hoping to catch their favourite artists in the flesh.  

Matt Mitchell, Associate Creative Director at RAPP UK, explains, “After a year of missed shows and cancelled festivals, it’s been great working with Virgin Media to treat their customers (and their friends) to some seriously cool musical experiences.

For many young people, this year will mark their first-ever live music experience. For Gen Z, reports suggest that live events will be more important than ever post-pandemic as they claim to be more inclined to attend “as many live events as possible.” Brands that help to enable these live events and experiences are pivotal and will gain favour with audiences. For experience-deprived young people, creating memories is going to be a priority for the future and brands that help with this will be well remembered.

The power of music

The soundtrack to many of these new memories will be music. Music is a powerful tool that can unite audiences and will be associated with the emotions felt, long after the event is over. Brands that enable experiences may become associated with certain music and will be in the recall memories of audiences post-event. 

Virgin Media’s campaign follows the focus on the connective power of music with its latest ‘Faster brings us closer’ ad which takes on different musical themes each week be it pop, indie, house or rock. Fans of each genre are brought together via a love of music with friendships and connections often being made through a mutual appreciation of genre.

Alongside the campaign, Virgin Media is also donating £50,000 to Nordoff Robbins, a music therapy charity who believe in the value of music for all people in society. The charity uses music therapy to bring out people’s potential, regardless of disability, illness or social exclusion, and this funding will help enable their music therapists to connect with even more people across the country.

“We’re proudly supporting Nordoff Robbins, helping their music therapists to connect with more people across the country so they can experience the power of music,” explains Simon Groves, Director of Brand and Marketing at Virgin Media O2.

Music festivals are well and truly back, and so are their audiences. To welcome fans back to festivals with open arms, brands need to think creatively about how to aid the experience to create long-lasting memories. Through one-of-a-kind prizes and staging unmissable gigs, smart brands are able to situate themselves at the centre, connecting fans with music and one another to help shape an unforgettable summer. 

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