The Azalea Fest is Back!

Live music playing in the background, the smell of fried food, and an oncoming parade of the Azalea Queen can only mean one thing; you’re at the Azalea Festival. Wilmington is the host of one of North Carolina’s largest festivals. Besides word of mouth, the Azalea Festival has a large presence on their website and social media sites. They capitalize on this by using their Twitter, Facebook, and also a blog. These social media outlets facilitate two way communication with their publics. They use IMC to interact with their customers and festival attendees. There are tons of events that take place during the week and mostly over the weekend like a cake tasting, 5K race, circus, and much more. The Azalea Festival adds value to the image of Wilmington; as soon as you enter the city you see a sign that says “Welcome to Wilmington, Home of the Azalea Festival”. It takes place in the historic part of downtown Wilmington and has been a long time tradition since 1948.  The residents of Wilmington as well as visitors from around the state have attended the festival for the past sixty three years. According to the Azalea Festivals’ official website, “More than 200,000 people attend the two-day weekend street fair”. They also say, “It has been estimated that the festival weekend activities contribute more than $5 million to the economy of Wilmington and the coastal Carolina area“. Support your local Wilmington economy and check out this years’ 63rd annual Azalea Festival. Visit their website for times and events http://www.ncazaleafestival.org/default.aspx.

Allison Day, Megan Canny, Melissa Gagliardi, Scott Burgess, Jessica Berinson

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7 thoughts on “The Azalea Fest is Back!

  1. I never thought about the manner in which social media influences these events till now, but you are absolutely correct. I noticed tht different restaurants (Front St Brewery etc.) as well as boutiques (Edge of Urge, in particular) were tweeting about the Beer Garden as well as the different bands performing live during the weekend. Downtown Sundown was preemptively marketing their Saturday concerts by supporting the live acts that occurred over this weekend. It is amazing to me how supporting others, in turn, can support your organization/intentions. Wilmington might technically be a small-town; but we have big-city means of communication. I am proud of the downtown scene I’ve called home for the past few years! 🙂

  2. I commend the city of Wilmington and the Azalea Festival for their marketing efforts and following they have created. I had no idea that the week brought in over 5 million dollars in to the local economy. I went downtown on Friday night with some friends and their was a huge presence of police and security on the eve of the event. While I commend the attention-to-detail for the event in anticipation of 200,000 visitors, I cannot help but question Wilmington’s IMC for the rest of the year.

    We have 200,000 people coming to visit Wilmington and enjoy this city but we remain to be a vacation town. We are marketed with welcome signs accentuating single events and ways of living. While Wilmington is marketed well for one week of the year, the marketing for long-term investors into the city remains weak. I would like to see the city invest in their city development of a business district and perhaps market to long-term investors to create an even deeper story instead of “Wilmington: Home of the Azalea Festival.”

  3. I had no idea the reveune the festival brought the community. I have only been going to the downtown festival for a few years but every year it is growing and including different ways of communicating whats going on. This year particularly I heard so many more radio ads and ways of advertising. Even though Wilmington is considered a small town, so many people love downtown and travel to come for just the day. Also the detail put into the event was incredible this year. I could tell so much planning and organizing went into the event.

  4. This was the first year I took part in several events put on throughout the Azalea Festival and I was blown away by how beautiful and entertaining the Festival was as a whole. I attend the Darius Rucker concert as well as the garden party and the after party at Dockside marina and had a wonderful experience at each event. I was thouroughly impressed by the amount of marketing and IMC that took place in not only the promotion of the event but throughout the entire event. This is a wonderful historic tradition that exists within our community and I am eager for the festival’s return next year!

  5. As much as I dislike the mass amounts of people that visit Wilmington this particular weekend in April, causing much turmoil and frustration, I am not opposed to the amount of revenue these visitors bring to our city. Wilmington is a great vacation spot for visitors trying to escape their stressful lives. I knew the Azalea Festival brought in mass amounts of revenue to our local economy; however, I had no idea it would bring in 5 million dollars! The amount of planning, marketing, and advertising that went in to this year’s Azalea Festival was phenomenal. Our city definitely succeeded with their social media efforts considering the amount of people who attended this past weekend.

  6. This is an amazing weekend for Wilmington and such a great amount of money that was brought in for the city! I have liven in the area for about five years now and last year was the first year that I actually made the effort to check out the festival activities. I take my daughter to the circus each year now and she looke forward to it so much! This was the first year that I attend one of the concerts and will be doing that for years to come! The Avett Brothers gave us an amazing show as they always do, and Trask is the best place for a concert because of the small size of the venue. Also, the parade was very cute like always and I will do that again next year as well. Way to go Wilmington!!! Keep up the good work.

  7. I have lived here for my entire life and have been to the azalea festival so many times. Because of this I have never really payed attention to the marketing the they do to let people know about it. They always do a great job with it and it is always a good time. I had no idea that it would bring that much money in to the economy of the local area. Its good to know that it is doing something besides making traffic for the week terrible.

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