Romanelli Communications recently launched the viral marketing campaign, “I Love U” to promote the upcoming Utica Music Fest (UMF). The event will take place in Utica, September 18th – 20th, 2008.

The I Love U campaign was posted to YouTube just 2 weeks ago and has already received a 5-star rating and over 3,000 views. The main video has also been posted on MySpace and sent via email to hundreds of recipients, who are continuing to pass it on. Support media for the event include a mobile billboard that residents will see around the greater Utica area, a traditional billboard, posters and t-shirts, all rockin’ the UMF logo.

“This is a brand new event for Utica and we hope it will become an annual festival,” said Joe Sweet, founder of UMF. “We have a lot to offer in music, culture and history, and we want to bring people here and show it off.”

Sweet continued, “When it came to promoting this event, there was no question in my mind of what to do—call Romanelli. They really understand the music scene and were able to work with us on cool and different ways to get our message out there.”

Joe Romanelli, President of Romanelli Communications said, “Strategically speaking, viral marketing was definitely the way to go for this campaign. Music already has an underground vibe and the music scene is all over MySpace and YouTube. This festival will draw people from well outside the Utica area, so it made sense to generate internet and word-of-mouth buzz. TV and radio would just not have had as big a reach in such a short amount of time. ‘I Love U’ has started to take on a life of its own, which is exactly what we’re looking for.”

“Creating the identity and campaign for UMF was a unique challenge for us,” said Bernie Freytag, Creative Director at Romanelli Communications. “We needed to marry the promotion of this festival with the promotion of our city in general. This music fest is something Utica has never done before and we needed to showcase and celebrate all that Utica has to offer. By repeating I Love U, using different musical styles and highlighting Utica landmarks, we were able to create a strong sense of unity for Utica through music. That’s what this festival represents.”

Over 200 bands are scheduled to perform at 18 venues throughout Utica during the 3-day festival. Advance tickets for the Utica Music Fest are available at www.uticamusicfest.com. A full weekend pass gives you access to all music venues for just $20.