The Edinburgh Festival Fringe

We have supported over seven million ticket sales for the world's largest arts festival, by creating completely new campaign concepts every year for the last five years.

  • Digital & Mobile
  • Integrated Campaigns
  • Print

Enjoy every second

Our 2013 campaign focused on generating an early buzz and excitement around the Fringe with a call to 'Get involved'.

Focusing on the fact that time is precious at the Fringe and you want to ‘Enjoy every second’, we collaborated with Liverpool based animation company Milky Tea, to create a series of 20 super short animations showing the rollercoaster of emotions people experience at the Fringe.

Starting with ‘Burst with excitement’, the animations were released across online and social media channels from early April to the end of August, supporting the early ticket release at the beginning of the year, the programme launch in May, and participant preparation on the run up to August.

This was supported by a media campaign during which we used a 3D typographic treatment to convey three lead emotions across national press, outdoor (in London and Glasgow) and online display, including pre-roll of a short selection of the animations on 4OD.

The enduring success of the Fringe is down to its ability to reinvent itself every year, so we aim to deliver a fresh creative approach and stay ahead of latest trends and technological advances such as use of social media and social ticketing.

Carolyn Gordon

Senior Account Manager

The Fringe Parade

The priority in 2012 was to prevent loss of ticket sales to clashing London 2012.

Our ‘Come with us’ campaign, put social media at the centre, driving awareness and then directly contributing to ticket sales. The campaign hinged on a parade of fascinating creatures, illustrated by Ben Newman, picking up performers and audiences on their way to Scotland’s capital for August.

A promotional video plus Facebook, web, print and outdoor advertising (including the London Underground and bus sides) encouraged people to join the parade on Facebook and share with their friends.

We set up one of the first examples of social ticketing in the UK by integrating with Red61’s ticketing software to create a pilot Facebook app to buy Fringe tickets.

In the end, ticket sales were only down 1% on previous year, in spite of potential for the Olympics to distract attendees. 

Winner - Best Poster & Use of Visual Design

Scottish Creative Awards 2012

The Fringe Squad

In 2011, we aimed to build a real buzz to overcome the economic doom and gloom.

We created The Fringe Squad, a colourful team of characters reflecting the voyage of discovery and fun that is the festival. And judging from the press coverage from the launch party, they did just that.

Winner Best Use of Craft

Scottish Creative Awards 2011

#Fringecover

In 2010, building on the last year’s success, the aim was to promote that the Fringe is open to all – anyone with an idea and a vision can bring their show to Edinburgh.

We invited the Twitter community to tell Scottish illustrator Johanna Basford the most unusual thing they’d like to see at the 2010 Fringe, using the hashtag #fringecover. For two days, Johanna recreated tweeters’ suggestions in real-time.

We applied the resulting illustrations to all materials including three cover versions of the programme.

#Fringecover was the top trending Twitter topic in Scotland on Thursday 25th and Friday 26th March and it was the second most tweeted topic across the UK. The creative supported record ticket sales and a resulting 4% increase in the number of performances booked for 2011.

Winner - Use of Social Media

Dadi Awards 2010

Dr Edd Hegg

Our task for our first campaign in 2009 was to overcome previous negative publicity from the 2008 box office meltdown. Our approach was to create an original campaign, and for the first time ever, a multiple set of covers for the Fringe programme.

An egg symbolised the fact that the Fringe is always different, and that one can never be sure what lies within. We created a viral campaign around the discovery of a seemingly indestructible egg among Edinburgh’s tramworks, followed by experiments in Professor Ed Hegg’s secret Fringe laboratory as he tried to reveal the egg’s contents.

We developed everything from T-shirts to banners, displays to ticket wallets and press passes, as well as a campaign microsite and social media.

The results

Dr Ed Hegg received a page of coverage in the Scotsman (positive pre-launch publicity not usually received by the Fringe), an increase of nearly 9% in ticket sales, and a programme reprint.