State of Live Music Fandom

Music to Our Ears

For more than a year, concert and festival-goers have been patiently awaiting the return of live music. Now, as vaccine programs gain momentum and national and local safety guidelines are lifted, music may soon fill our hearts, minds and souls. 

With tickets quickly selling out as festivals and tours announce their line-ups and schedules, MarketCast researchers wanted to explore how music fans are thinking and feeling about attending festivals in-person again.  

We fielded a study with more than 1,000 live music fans in the U.S., between the ages of 18-49, and analyzed millions of social media posts. What did we find out? It appears music fans are ready to Rock and Hip Hop and R&B again. 

According to our study, close to 70 percent of live music fans report they “can’t wait to attend live music again.” In fact, roughly half of fans say they are more interested in attending live music events in 2021 than they were before the pandemic. While COVID safety protocols rank lower on their priority list for deciding whether or not to attend a music festival, fans are open to a wide range of safety protocols, from mask wearing and COVID testing to designated viewing areas for vaccinated fans.  

Key Themes We Studied: 

  • Are music fans comfortable returning to live music festivals? 
  • What are the top music genres among likely festival attendees? 
  • Have fan expectations for the live music experience changed since the pandemic? 
  • What are fan attitudes towards COVID protocols, including mask wearing and designated areas for vaccinated fans? 
  • After a year of virtual music events, are fans still willing to pay for live music streaming? If so, how much? 

Download this free report to learn more about festival attendees’ expectations, including their interest in traveling to live music events, purchasing VIP tickets, and their perceptions of 2021 festival sponsors.  

Complete the form below to download the full report.



5 Reasons Why Brands Need Fandom

At MarketCast, we believe in the power of fandom. We think it’s as important for consumer brands as it is for sports teams and superheroes.   

But, not all fandom is created equal. Some fans devote every waking hour to their favorite brands. They anticipate new product releases and share and evangelize their passion with anyone who will listen. Other fans display their fandom in more subtle ways, weaving a brand’s values and origin stories into their lives and social connections.  

No matter what types of fans you attract, you need to acknowledge and nurture them. In fact, committing to your fans has never been more critical. And, while fandom is largely fueled by emotion, understanding your fans and engaging them is a huge, ongoing challenge for all marketers, researchers and product developers. Here are a few things to consider: 

1. Fandom Drives Loyalty  

Fans are fiercely loyal and come back to a brand and its products timeandtime again. A recent fandom study by MarketCast found that fans of consumer brands, from alcoholic beverages and athleisurewear, are 15x more loyal. In fact, even when brands make public missteps, such as siding with the wrong cause or shipping a less than perfect product, fans are more likely to forgive.  

2. Fans Identify with Your Brand 

Fans wear their passion like a badge of honor. Whether it’s a regional craft beer or a sneaker brand, fandom offers a channel for people of all ages and demographic backgrounds to share their common passions and build communities. In fact, MarketCast found that when people self-identified as being fans of a specific brand it’s because they believe these brands closely reflect their personal values and identity.  

3. Fans will Pay a Premium 

Fans are willing to spend a premium for brands they love. In fact, according to MarketCast’s fandom research, self-identified fans are 6x more likely to pay more for brands and products they are fanatical about. We see evidence of this everyday with beverages, clothing brands and consumer electronics products that succeed in charging a premium for their products, while more cost-effective options are available.  

4. Fans are Your Evangelists 

Fans are more likely to help you promote your messages and grow your fandom. MarketCast found brand fans are 8x more likely to go out of their way to evangelize and recommend a brand they love to friends and family. In many respects, fandom can become an unfair advantage for brands in the marketplace when facing off against competitors.

5. Fandom is About Love

Fandom represents a love for something. Consider the amazing story of Nav Bhatia, the former car sales man and Toronto Raptors super fan who was recently inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame (a must read). Brands have the opportunity to nurture this same level of love and passion, whether it’s for an automaker, beverage brand, technology service or even a financial institution.

How do we know fandom so well? Because we do fandom research and data science better than anyone on the planet. In fact, every year, we connect with millions of fans across media, entertainment, sports and lifestyle brand landscape. And, we use our knowledge of fandom to optimize the go-to-market strategies for thousands of consumer products and content every year. Contact us to learn more.  

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