Festival Abierto 2013


part 2 - onsite and results

initial steps


  • Keeping Festival Abierto's brand relevant outside of the yearly event.
  • Build upon Festival Abierto 2012's success and get bigger.

Demonstrable growth between Festival Abierto 2012 and Festival Abierto 2013 had always been one of the most frequent internal discussions.  With 2012 having established a baseline and template, the focus could now shift towards increasing the scope (and necessary resources) to achieve a bigger and better Festival.

Unlike 2012, the 2013 edition of Festival Abierto now had a billing to live up to, and the communications team worked diligently to share the growth in Festival Abierto's brand and activity.

Keeping the Festival Abierto name in the public consciousness in between events was the biggest priority.

One idea quickly developed into its own separate project (see Charlas Abiertas), while others were discussed and evaluated.  

One concept was discussed with Tetra Pak, one of Festival Abierto's primary sponsors, which was to make branded products out of Tetra Pak material, the same material used to build Festival Abierto pavilions.

The first was CD packaging for a special edition EP of Festival Abierto 2012 musical performer Carlos Méndez's 2nd album "Mar".  Carlos graciously gave the team access for a wide ranging interview, cut with footage of his live performance at the Parque Omar Amphitheater at Festival Abierto 2012.

The second was to license artwork done by Pedro Fonseca Mora at Festival Abierto 2012 on Tetra Pak Panels to use for promotional products, such as a notebook or laptop pad. Tetra Pak used the artwork to commemorate their 60th year of operations and used these products to highlight their commitment to sustainability and culture.

Archival content and Instagram

With a full year of content ready to use, there was less need to generate the same kind of behind-the-scenes content as the previous year.  Once planning and pre-production for the event began, the communications team began to explore the use of Instagram as the primary social media channel from which to share visual content to Facebook and Twitter.  Following research on best practices, visual content generates much more activity on Facebook than written content.  Using Instagram to share as much as possible would then be both productive and efficient.

Examples of using 2012 content for 2013 cycle (click to enlarge)

Certain calendar dates and other events were noted for new content to be based on existing content and tailored for the relevant posts.  The same principle was also applied towards more specific communications:

  • call to action
  • milestone celebrations
  • participatory feedback
  • sector specific communications (NGOs, sponsors, volunteers)

A smaller campaign was generated around using the Festival Abierto logo in a similar manner to Milton Glazer's famous I (HEART) NY campaign.

Having had success with Festival Abierto 2012's open tree campaign where participants submitted their take on the Festival Abierto logo, this was another way of exploring how the tree logo was open to subjective interpretation.  The different keywords selected were all positive concepts related to Festival Abierto's core values.

This project generated significant activity on Instagram/Facebook and kept the audience eager to learn how Festival Abierto would evolve and grow for a bigger event in 2013.

Mini callback campaign (click to enlarge)

Additionally, with a name firmly established and a growing community, Festival Abierto started to receive content from NGOs who had participated.  This was practically a free source of content that was taken advantage of to generate traffic, as well as highlight Festival Abierto's stature in the non-profit community.

Various sponsors had already attached themselves to the project as a CSR initiative; using Festival Abierto's partnerships with the 2012 network of NGOs to find/create a CSR opportunity was a logical step.

Festival Abierto enjoyed a good working relationship with Fundación Tortuguías, one of the event NGOs, who stepped in with Beach Cleanups events in June and September. Notable sponsors included LG Electronics, Super Deportes, Recimetal, Aquaçai, HSBC, and Copa Airlines among others.

The documentation of these beach cleanups was important to our sponsors CSR initiatives.  To that end, both events had shareable videos made so that Festival Abierto's audience could see the brand at work, and sponsors could promote themselves on their own social networks.

The preproduction demands of the event meant that the team would be spending less time in a centralized planning location and more time in different places taking care of different things, all of which are worthy of sharing with the audience.

Thankfully, Instagram allows access to an account from multiple phones; different team members were given user access to cover more ground this way.  At it's most basic, team members were encouraged to document their tasks and send them to the communications team.

Even the most mundane snapshot could be leveraged into a useful piece of content, with the proper copywriting.  Meetings, site inspections, sponsor contract signings, anything that showed the team being active.

As the event date approached, the Festival Abierto team began a hard press push through the various media partners (TVN, La Prensa, among others) to increase exposure and put visible faces in the media to associate with the project.

This also presented a viable opportunity for key sponsors such as LG Electronics and Tetra Pak to promote their CSR values, as part of the sponsorship agreements.

The 2013 artwork began to hit the streets and make the rounds on social media, as did a series of 30 second TV spots for TVN and online.

OOH posters (click to enlarge)

TV Spot No. 1 (click to enlarge)

TV Spot No. 2 (click to enlarge)

TV Spot for Musical Stage (click to enlarge)

Finally, the press conference at the Parque Omar Club facilities was held, with key attendees representing sponsors, NGO, and of course, the office of the First Lady of Panama once again providing Parque Omar to host the event.  Whereas the 2012 press conferences was built around a promise, the 2013 press conference had the luxury of featuring archival content and testimonials to communicate Festival Abierto's proven success.

Festival Abierto 2013 Presentation Video (click to enlarge)

Said success made it much easier for Festival Abierto to gain access to a series of notable figures in the community to speak their minds about supporting cultural projects.  These interviews were cut together and presented at the press conference.

  • Ruben Blades - Grammy award winning songwriter/performer/actor
  • Maruja Herrera - Director of INAC (2009-2014)
  • Se Woo Park - President LG Electronics Panama
  • Marta Linares de Martinelli - First Lady of Panama (2009-2014)

Another series of interviews was conducted with key figures who had participated in Festival Abierto 2012.  These testimonials were intended to convey the contributions and positive results of the project, and highlight the power of collaborative efforts.  This video was also presented at the press conference, as well as used in a recap video.

  • Alexandre Carvalho - General Manager, Tetra Pak Panama
  • Ursula Kiener - Director, Jardines Urbanos
  • Ricardo Fernández - Creative Director, TBWA\Panama / Vocalist/Guitarist, Orquesta Garash
  • Se Woo Park - President, LG Electronics Panama
  • Querube Alvarado - Director and Co-Founder, Eco Creando
  • Massiel Pinzón - Board Member, Fundación Rockistmo / Drummer, Lolas


Festival Abierto 2013 Press Conference Recap Video (click to enlarge)

Festival Abierto 2013 Testimonial Video (click to enlarge)