According to Sharron and Perry (2004) there are various attribute to special events, these characteristics are that they are unique, intangible, have a fixed time scale, and labour intensive among others. This characteristic is what makes an event into a special event. A special event recognises a unique moment in time with ceremony and ritual to satisfy specific needs, Goldblatt (2001). And in the case of MTV it was there 10th European Music award and they wanted to create an event which would mark a milestone and show its critics and competition that they are still the big boys and market leader when it comes to the music industry.
MTV Networks operates a leading portfolio of cable TV channels; they also have music video networks MTV, VH1, and CMT. MTV Networks International oversees more than 120 channels worldwide and distributes content online, and produces video games through MTV Games. MTV decided to have their 10th European music award ceremony in Edinburgh. Allen, (2000) suggests that there are various type of event, for MTV this is/was a special event, as its for the music industry only and it recognises the music industries contribution, with access to public and media.
MTVs biggest stakeholders are its shareholders and its customers, of course there are others, and MTV need keeps an up to date with what its customers wants. MTV wanted a start stuck event where they will celebrate the 10th ceremony, create a lot of buzz and excitement and hope to gain new customers in the process. While Edinburgh and the Scottish government wanted to use MTV to reimage Scotland. And show the world what it has to offer, creating a feeling amongst viewers that it is a dynamic, vibrant, historical city.
With the councils wish to make Edinburgh the most prosperous northern city by 2015. According to an article published in Event Magazine (2007), public events are increasingly being used around the world as promotional tools by cities, to increase the citys image. Hughes (1999) suggests that public officials must market the city as a dynamic environment, as this will attract not only tourist but also new jobs and settlers to the region. According to a report by Ofcom (2006), the telecom regulator, 16 to 24-year-olds, a key demographic group for advertisers and MTVs core audience.
And this is one of the segment that Scottish official where hopping to target though their reimage campaign to show them, why they should come to Scotland/ Edinburgh. As well as lure other older age group at the same time, educate them about Scotland and its history. For a private sector company, such as MTV, the client defines the events budget, leaving the events planner/ organiser able to spend it how they choose and therefore do not have to justify what they do with the money. In the case of public sector, local government and tourist boards, it is not just the immediate benefits that are measured post event.
It is also the long-term or flow on effects (Bowdin et al. 2006) that benefit the community as a whole. From an every early stage there were problems between, the two parties objectives, desire and goals which were very different. The goals of a public and private event differ in that private companies are more often than not in pursuit of profit (Andersson and Getz, 2008). In this case one wanted to put a spectacular show to celebrate and the other wanted to use the show to reimage its self.
This is because; MTV is more likely to adopt a consumer orientation whereas ELTB might have a product orientation approach (Andersson and Getz, 2008: 849). The event was criticized from early on by critics and local newspaper, when it was found that MTV was given a ? 750 thousand public subsidiary to part fund for shows temporary structure and also for the simultaneous live concert. This caused some tension, and the local newspaper was very critical about this, specially when the money could have been spend on other things e. g.
Scotsman journalist felt that the event did very little for the Leiths poverty, prostitution etc. These doses not help when MTVs parent company is Viacom and according to website www. answere. com Viacom made a profit of $369 million in 2003. So giving a ? 750 thousand pound to MTV is seen as a waste of money by some; however it might have been necessary to attract MTV to Scotland and also to persuade MTV to have a simultaneous concert at a different venue. What MTV could have done is either not taken any of the money or taken a proportionally small amount just for the concert at the Princes Street Garden.
This would have prevented them from receiving the backlash from the press. Or found/ made the venue bigger and incorporate a larger audience to make it a huge spectacular. Further anger was expressed by resident and newspaper when it emerged that, the event was not a live concert with thousand of ticket available and rather was a television show, rising the expecting of the local wishing to be at the show. Moreover only 50 of 6000 ticket were being sold in Edinburgh and locals had to compete with other European to pick up one of the 2000 ticket which sold out within 20 minutes.
Rest were allocated to event sponsors like Vodafone Live and American Express. This obviously was a weak point for both MTV and the local government who did not communicate well with each other and in turn was late to tell the residents. Creating a buzz and anticipation during the weeks ahead of the event which lead to disappointment, Sharron and Perry (2004) suggest that there are various possible motives for attending an event, in this case it would social motives its why resident of Edinburgh would want to go to the concert and was angry when they didnt get the ticket.
This social motive involves social interaction with others, creation of community spirit, status or recognition of achievement. They were surrounded by all the hype and excitement of this event and as a community wanted to embrace this event as it was first of its kind in Edinburgh, and specially for youth generation it would have been something exciting as they would have been able to see there stars who they normally see on television.
In order to avoid this kind of isappointment, both ELTB and MTV need to communicate more effectively in future, and think about this issues when they are conducting there feasibility study before making the decision to carry out such event. This will not only save time and negative press but will let the anticipated residents/ consumes know what to except. The organizer solved the problem by having the concert which have good line-ups and also a 30 sec live feed at the actually award show. They also gave 750 tickets to local charity and used 1000 local youngsters for various tasks, (Mooney & Halstead, 2003).
As mentioned above that MTV was given a £750 thousand pound subsidiary, but the local council spent a further ? 75 thousand in hidden cost which the newspaper and opposition council were angered about as it came from the council budget. Money which was spent to window shop the town before the event so that it looks presentable to the world and dose not effect the reimaging process.
This cost include extra cleansing, policing, traffic management, staffing. Further £30 thousand used to part finance banners in the city. Moreover, £5 thousand was spend to clean up the city centre hotel fronts in preparation of the event which according of a conservative group should have been the responsible of the Hotel. According to Watt (1999) debate that place marketing requires a pristine environment. So as it was the objective of the local government at that time, they would have seen it as a useful and essential cost which needs to be carried out in order to give audience the message they wanted to project to its consumes, tourists. However, MTV could have also share the cost when it came to the policing, traffic management and staffing.
As this would have shown locals and press that they care about customers safety and also its dose not want to burden the local government with the extra costs, and it already planned for such cost in their $4. 5 million budget which gave MTV the editorial control. Local government needed to communicate with the cities Hotels, restaurant and clubs to negotiate deals, where they all put some money in to a pot which would be use for the cleaning of the city and business fronts. Public sector bodies, (ELTB) tend to look at long-term objectives when it comes to planning their events, or as Mules (1998) states the spillover effects of events.
Mules goes on to say that even if the actual event makes a loss, it still may produce benefits for local industrys such as transportation, restaurants, hotels and local caterers or suppliers. As by doing so not only the city was benefiting from the extra trade but also the business as people are more likely to go somewhere clean then dirty. Roche (2000) remarks that mega events often physically transform an area; here we had an attempt to symbolically reconnect Edinburgh with its waterfront to aid future business prospects.
The problems which occurred during this event, was mainly due to the reluctances of councils project officers not standing their ground, and communicate and consult with MTV successfully. They were happy for MTV to decide what sort of content the show should be and comply with every request, as one put it, MTV knows what they are doing. This attitude cost them both money and marketing opportunities. ELTB had to pay for slots during the show for their advertisement and spent further £5000 writing the publication editorial bearing their logos.
Local councils wish to promote a new charity promoting Arts in the city was also scrapped during the event. Even when at one point MTV said they would help to promote the charity but later changed their mind. Nonetheless if ELTB was not, bit scared, at times they would probably use MTV more and without paying them. ELTB should have bargain more with MTV when it came to this issues, specially allowing them to use the screen at the award and the concert venues to promote their reimaging project and cheaper slots during the actual award show.
Though MTV did not support the charity openly and needed discussion, they did however auction pop star memorabilia at the charity launch and provided donation from MTV UK, Reid (2003). Edinburgh Leith Tourist Board, received a ward from MTV for hosting the best show in the events 10 years. The city was also praised by A-list celebrity who attended the award and several international news agencies for hosting excellent award ceremony.
This obviously shows that government project of reimaging the city worked and they are getting noticed, while MTV produced spectacular shows which help them achieve their objective. Therefore, creating an excellent and effective event which helped all those who took part in making it reach their objective, at the same time both parties learnt for future how to deal with different clients specially that they need to communicate more effectively and learn to negotiate and convey the message if possible to their customers from an early stage. This will ensure that future event will run smoothly and successfully.