One of the World's Largest Arts and Cultural Festivals Aligns its Message, Empowers its Regionals
First held on Baker Beach in San Francisco in 1986, Burning Man know boasts around 70,000 participants in the annual event at Black Rock City, Nevada. The organization works full-time, year-round with an operating budget of $30m.
Following the demand for tickets outstripping supply for the first time and on the heels of its transition to a non-profit, the organization started telling its story more publicly. As part of the process, they utilized our Strategic Blueprint to lean into the growth opportunity by aligning its message globally.
Explaining the experience of Burning Man to someone is like trying to describe in great detail the color yellow to a blind person. To that end, after nearly 30 years, the global team and broader community had various messages, meanings and descriptions for the event (which is a global culture guided by principles, far more than just an event).
With the intention of scaling the culture to transform the world, Burning Man needed precise and comprehensive messaging that was more accessible for the broader community outside those that have experienced the event, and to arm its regional organizers with communication toolkits.
METHOD: STRATEGIC BLUEPRINT
We conducted research across four paths simultaneously: internal leadership interviews; a broader team and community survey; a thorough review of Burning Man’s messaging and media coverage; and an audit of similar organizations.
Our objective was to take an in-depth look at how the community currently communicates, evaluate the techniques of similar communities and generate an ongoing strategy to take the Burning Man culture to the next level.
Burning Man is a global cultural movement founded on principles. What started with an event has now become a global community. Intentionally, it has built a regional framework which works to transform communities through culture.
The Burning Man culture is expressed and embodied in the souls of its community; though it must empower them to paint their canvases to achieve its objective.