Getting Social at #FairSTL

For the fourth year, Forest Park was home to America’s Biggest Birthday Party – Fair Saint Louis. Once again, CGPR was part of the three-day festival, handling the Fair’s public relations, media relations and social media strategy.

Our team spent more than 36 hours on site over the course of the three days – coordinating both traditional and digital media coverage, while dancing and singing along to performances in between, and even trying out the human slingshot (for social media purposes, of course). The Fair featured shows by the Purina Pro Plan Performance Team and other family-friendly activities; the new Schnucks Wine Garden experience; headlining performances by hip-hop artist Akon, rockers 3 DOORS DOWN and country music star Jake Owen; and so much more.

Not a drop of rain plagued Fair Saint Louis this year. Blue sunny skies welcomed more than 300,000 people from across the country to Forest Park for an exceptional Fourth of July celebration, a 36-year-old tradition put on by the Fair Saint Louis Foundation.

While Mother Nature certainly blessed us with beautiful weather, every PR pro will tell you that the key to throwing a successful event is to prepare, prepare, prepare.

Prepare a plan early. Adapt the plan. Have a backup plan.

This mantra applies to everything in PR — from crisis communications to media relations. But in this case, it couldn’t be truer for the Fair’s social media strategy. In addition to planning out a daily content calendar leading up to the Fair, CGPR also developed a detailed (as in, by the hour), three-day content calendar for each day of the Fair that strategically provided information to the public. From details on parking, transportation and performances, to showcasing vendors and other Fair activities – it was crucial to have a plan, and we let it guide us through all the moving parts of the Fair to ensure nothing was missed. With a three-person social media team on site to execute our planned content, it was much easier to adapt and rework when a new idea came to light or something needed to be communicated to the public.

A good social media plan can extend the reach of an event by tens of thousands, and ours contributed to garnering more than 242 million media impressions and 22 million social media impressions for Fair Saint Louis 2017.

Overall, we couldn’t have been more pleased with the outcome of Fair Saint Louis 2017. Now we are looking ahead to our next two summer music festivals – LouFest (Sept. 9 and 10) and Faye Fest (Sept. 30).

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