landmark music festival

The National Mall is one of our country’s most iconic and picturesque destinations for travelers from across the country and around the world – 29 million people per year, in fact. As our nation’s most visited national park, it is often perceived as a pristine attraction, with lush green grounds and perfectly polished monuments. Unfortunately, that is far from reality. With crumbling monuments and poorly maintained grounds as a result of severe underfunding, the Mall has struggled to keep up with necessary upkeep and has been unable to make desperately needed upgrades.

The Trust for the National Mall is the nonprofit organization responsible for reducing the park’s extreme funding gap. With a goal of drawing attention to the cause through engagement of our country’s younger generation, the Trust set to bring some necessary noise to the Mall’s dire state with the first-ever Landmark Music Festival. The two-day event featured 40 artists, including headliners Drake and The Strokes.

Swanson Communications was brought on board to help the Trust elevate their cause throughout the promotion of the event – ensuring it didn’t get lost in the excitement of the festival’s impressive lineup, and bring the National Mall’s issues to the attention of media on a more national level.

Our team began by developing a comprehensive pitch that spoke to the uniqueness of the event and the state of the park. A targeted media list was created to ensure that the press across print, digital and television outlets were covered. This included extensive research, discovery and outreach to media members that were likely to cover the National Mall, as well as the Landmark Music Festival. In addition to aggressively pitching media outlets, our team worked with press members credentialed for the event to ensure that the cause was mentioned prominently in pre-event stories.

The National Mall’s physical condition spoke to the significance of its needs, and the severity of its underfunding, so in lieu of a formal press conference, our team worked with the Trust to organize two media tours of the park’s grounds. This included a partnership with the Hop-On Hop-Off Bus that provided transportation for press members. A guided tour of the Mall allowed the Trust’s team to speak with media while en route, and the bus stopped at critical points throughout the course to offer a deeper understanding of additional funding needs and what it could mean for the iconic park.

Throughout the Landmark Music Festival weekend, our team gathered attendee and artist quotes that captured the essence of the event and the importance of the Mall, which were later serviced out to media for post-event coverage. Aggressive pitching ensued following the event, and details of money raised throughout the Festival were shared. Coverage secured for the event and the cause was diverse and included outlets such as NPR, CSPAN, The Source, local television and more.

Photo Credit: C3 Presents