Is it the venue? Eh, maybe. Is it the lighting? probably not. Although, I did recently attend an event at Cipriani’s for the company “Moment Factory” and let me tell you it was definitely ABOUT THE LIGHTING. Incredible video mapping installation they have put in Cipriani’s Downtown. Back on track here. Is it the Music? Yes, possibly if you are hosting an EDM Festival, Bluegrass Concert, karaoke night music might be the most important thing but for the great majority of events out there the most important element is of course the FOOD & DRINKS.
Think about the last event you attended. What was memorable about it? The conversation, the people, you met, the laughs you shared (hoho) or how incredible the mixology was and the delightfully cute bartender. In most cases the food and the drinks are what people talk about for months after your event. This is what people come for. This is what they expect when attending an event ESPECIALLY if they guests have paid to be there. How many times have you heard people say “I’m not going if I have to buy drinks…” The importance of having solid food and drinks is probably the best investment of your money you can make. With many of our clients who are planning events here in NYC on a budget they say to me that they are spending $8,000.00 on the venue and therefore don’t have the money to spend on the catering… Here is a quick hack. In NYC the wealth of condo buildings that now come with STUNNING common rooms is overwhelming. These common rooms largely are empty 95% of the time and are FREE to the people who live there. All you have to do is inquire amongst your friends to see who has one of these common rooms in their building. Boom I just saved you $7k you can now spend on the food and drinks.
Events are a special time for friends to get together and celebrate so the food and drinks should be special too. If you want a jack & coke just go to the Irish pub on the corner. A jack & coke is not a cocktail. A cocktail consists of at least 3 ingredients. 2 ingredients is an emergency.
Yes, I will have another sustainable seared red snapper with creme fraiche in a crispy wonton taco… they are delightful.
Have you noticed the growing presence of advertisements online? The computer or cell phone has become a device whose sole purpose is to show you ads. Wherever your attention seems to be an ad will follow. Marketing has corrupted email, Facebook, Google, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat, and more. But I wonder sometimes about whether this pervasive advertising is damaging brand identity. How annoying is a pop-up ad when all you want to do is read the article from Variety or ESPN. How annoying is the now required YouTube pre-roll advertisement when what you really want to do is watch the video. Personally speaking I have never once purchased an online course about “growth-hacking” because it showed me an advertisement before a Casey Neistat video. In fact the overwhelming influx of digital advertising has just made me less and less confidant in what I am seeing online is actually true. (isn’t that appropriate though? Shouldn’t we take what we see/read online with a grain of salt? At what point did we start believing things that we read online?) In fact more and more articles, blogs etc are actually just written by computers with the sole purpose of getting key words onto the internet so that it will come up once someone searches them in the hopes of converting a sale, gaining a follower, or influencing a political ideology. Don’t get me wrong I feel some types of advertisements are wonderful and let your fans know what you are doing and to remind them of cool stuff that is up and coming. But most of the intrusive digital advertising is just that intrusive and makes me like that brand/person/company/organization a little less. Did you know there is a reason why those little “x’s” on pop-up ads are so small and hard to find. Because every time you click on the ad instead of the “x” the computers read that you clicked on the ad because you liked it. This kind of thing makes me believe the true value of online advertising to be declining. On the other hand if you read or see online that your friend, family, or someone you follow posted about something recommending it/praising it you are way more likely to consider it. Hence the rise of influencer marketing and mirco-influencers. This new ‘word-of-mouth’ is the next frontier (that is until we read that our favorite influencer was paid XXX amount of dollars to trick millennials into going to a ridiculous EDM concert on an island in the exumas.)
To my point. The combination of a real experience with a carefully selected amount of micro-influencers of a specific genre/category creates the prefect storm of everything you hope to achieve with your marketing dollars and more. Creating authentic experiences around a brand that allow the consumer to taste/feel/see/understand and then share it with their following is the ultimate in marketing. Frankly it’s just good business. Being Authentic. Being truthful, Being real.
It’s my belief that as the internet matures we will see less of an ROI from google adwords, banner pop-ups, paid FB & IG and more of an ROI in experiential marketing and the importance of creating an ‘experience’ around a brand that can be shared and not just some staid photo of a brand on scroll endorsed by bots and fake followers.
Authenticity and integrity is always the best policy.
New York Fashion Week is by far one of the most exciting and stylish times to be in New York. HighLife has worked with fabulous designers from Opening Ceremony, Donna Karan, Diane Von Furstenberg, Belstaff, La Coste, and more… Whether its simple food & beverage for pre/post show treats or more comprehensive event design and production for branded activations, influencer call to actions, or large end of week bashes. HigLlife is there. Viva la fashion week!
Services provided: New York Fashion Week Model Event Staffing, New York Fashion Week Event Catering, New York Fashion Week Event Production, New York Fashion Week Mixology and Beverage Services.
Early in April as the showers subsided and the flowers began to bloom, HighLife collaborated with MEDIUM (An online community for readers and writers) and POSTLIGHT AGENCY (NYC’s premiere app design company) in this spring tech launch. HighLife florist Brenton Woods created unique spring floral installations from antique typewriters from PATINA VINTAGE with the menus of the afternoon freshly typed on the spool. Please note the gorgeous Pink Royal with accompanying cocktail. HighLife’s kitchen, Rapt Affairs created deluxe farm-to-bar treats like the “So My Type” with charred jalepeño and market carrot juice and the “Bless Your Heart” with Bourbon, market fennel, and fresh peach. More farm-to-table eats were passed on custom magazine sculpted trays (a Pinterest dream). Finally the evening was capped off with stellar service in this intimate affair for 100 in the heart of NYC’s Flatiron District.
What do you get when you combine Cinco de Mayo, OC friends and family, and the launch of our latest collection of Opening Ceremony x Teva sandals? A good time, obviously, and that’s just what happened last night at our 35 Howard Street store. Fresh off her OC-exclusive mixtape, Jubilee—along with friends Egg Foo Young and Dre Skull—provided the perfect soundtrack to the evening. The DJ was of course decked out in her own pair of Opening Ceremony x Teva Flatform Universal Sandals, stating, “I love them because they make me tall, I’m only 4’11”!”
The summery tunes were the perfect compliment to the margaritas, Tiger Beer, and La Newyorkina’s boozy popsicles being passed around the room. To soak up the tequila, Mission Cantina was also standing by with some spicy Mexican bites.
Navigating through the crowded room, we caught a glimpse of OC co-founder Humberto Leon and asked him his thoughts about the evening and his second round collaborating with Teva. “I’ve been the biggest supporter of Teva’s forever, so I’m super excited to have this second collection with them. After selling out online during the pre-order, we’re pumped for the full launch. As for the party, partnering with Mission Cantina on Cinco de Mayo is the perfect way to kick Summer off right.” We can’t help but agree.