The Big Chill House Launch Party – #marketingfail

The opening party of The Big Chill House’s new terrace was last night, and my friend Laura and I thought we’d pop along. The Facebook event promised a free burger and maybe a few free drinks, and we thought ‘Hey, why not?’

(You have to understand, it’s very rare we get a night off together. These moments must be savoured!)

There were nearly 800 people attending the event. I don’t know about you, but I don’t remember the last bar I went to that could hold 800 people without at least 30 of them clogging up the line to the girls bathrooms. And the rest trying to get a drink. While we all know that a Facebook event will have approximately half of the attendees show up, that’s still a sizeable queue. So we decided to get there early.

In all honestly, we needn’t have bothered.

5 min in. Photo courtesy of Facebook.

From the outside, we could see that it was busy. From the inside, what we thought were simply loads of people was actually the longest queue for a drink I’ve seen outside of a festival. And at least at festivals, they have a nice little barriers to keep the queue in line. (Heh heh. See what I did there?) The terrace had been shut since the event started – turns out, it’s capacity is pretty small. And quite frankly, I couldn’t even bear to check out the bathrooms.

So we did the only sane thing: we turned right around, walked out, and caught the tube to Gordon’s Wine Bar, and had an all round better evening.

If I thought we’d been too hasty in our decision, I felt loads better this morning. Every couple minutes, I get a notification from Facebook that another person has commented on the Big Chill Houses’s event page. Wanna see the highlights?

And this are just the icing on the cake.

There’s definitely such a thing as too much publicity. These two are just the icing on the cake. Hundreds of disgruntled people didn’t get in, didn’t get free drinks, and basically had an all out bad time – and these are the ones making their voices heard.

For those that got on to the terrace and had a good night, where are they? Telling their mates about how hectic it was and how lucky they were – just not on the Facebook page. The number of people who had a bad experience, and  who are posting about it, far outweighs anyone who just had an all-right night.

Imagine if they’d had a guestlist – 200 people max. More organisation, more drinks, and you could pretty much ensure everyone had a good time. And then who isn’t going to rave about this awesome place they went to and got free shit all night?

Exclusivity is key, darling.


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