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Music as a driving force for tourism

The Spain Live Music association and the tourism data consultancy firm Mabrian Technologies have published a study on how the Primavera Sound festival affected tourism in Barcelona last year.

Primavera Sound 2019 will start on 30 May. It is the most important music festival in Barcelona and one of the most important ones in the country. Last year, it brought together more than 210,000 participants.

In this context, the Spain Live Music association, which focuses on the growth of music tourism in Spain, and Mabrian Technologies, a firm which specialises in the analysis of data (Big Data) for the tourism sector, have published a study to measure the impact of this festival in Barcelona in 2018.

In order to carry out the study, Mabrian has analysed more than 190,000 tourist mentions about Barcelona on Instagram and Twitter during two comparative periods: the week prior to the event – from 14th to 21st May and the week of Primavera Sound 2018 – from 28th May to 4th June. Furthermore, the prices of 3-, 4- and 5-star hotels, a total of 403 hotels, have also been analysed during this period. In addition, the comments about these hotels during the same period (11.503 reviews), have been studied.

The study demonstrates how the festival had a great impact on the destination, showing its influence beyond the event itself. The tourist mentions about Barcelona increased significantly (+6.6%) in the week of the event, and Primavera Sound was the most mentioned tourist attraction (21.22% of the tourist mentions). This is more than the important, traditional tourist attractions like Gaudí, Sagrada Família and Parc Güell.

Regarding the profile of the attendees, there was greater interest from foreigners. This increased the tourist mentions up to 20% especially from the UK, Germany and Italy. The average age of the latter was lower than the age of the local attendees with 66% of the total between the ages of 18 and 35 years and 44% between 25 and 35 years.

The semantic analysis of the text from the monitored mentions by use of Natural Language Processing and Artificial Intelligence techniques has outlined a more precise profile of the visitor that attends this type of music event as well as their interests and satisfaction with the destination.

Thus, it has been observed that apart from the music, they are mainly interested in relaxation, gastronomy and active tourism. Furthermore, having measured the feelings of these interactions, it has been noted that the level of satisfaction with Barcelona and its different tourist products was higher than the average for the rest of the year in all the countries of origin analysed.

The hotel sector also showed positive indicators during the festival dates. There was a general increase in the average price which reached +16% in the 4-star hotels and +13.4% in the 3-star hotels. Satisfaction with the hotel sector was also up in this period, especially in the 3- and 4-star establishments. There was a 4% increase according to the analysis of more than 11,000 opinions of hotels on TripAdvisor and Booking, about 345 hotels.

In light of the conclusions presented by this study by Mabrian Technologies, Iñaki Gaztelumendi, president of the Spain Live Music association has stated that “the positive impact of music events on the tourism industry is undeniable. However, the use of Artificial Intelligence tools in tourism is vital as it enables us to accurately evaluate the impact it has so that the sector for the promotion of music events is considered a key asset.”

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