September 16, 2009, 12:00 AM puts a battle of the bands online

Local bands vie for a spot on the concert tour as fans view and vote on uploaded performance videos on the e-commerce site.

Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. is launching an online, user-generated battle of the bands contest that lets its consumer audience log on to vote for their favorite bands and help determine the winner. The goal of the competition and online component is to engage customers in the California lifestyle apparel brand and its second sponsored PacTour live concert tour.

To compete, bands upload a performance video at There, fans can listen to and vote for their favorite bands. Online fan voting will narrow the field to the top six for each local stop on the live PacTour concert tour, which kicks off in November. The six bands selected by online voting will perform at a local live show one week prior to the date of each tour stop, and the winner, as determined by a panel of judges, will open the show the following week at that stop of the PacTour. Four bands - Saosin, Innerpartysystem, POS and Eye Alaska - will be on the tour this year.

At the end of the tour, fans will again vote online to pick a winner from the 35 winners from each stop of the tour. The winning band will perform on Fuel TV, an action sports cable network that’s a unit of Fox Media. The winner also will receive a prize package valued at more than $15,000.

Simply reaching customers is no longer enough, according to vendor FameCast Media, the digital marketing and entertainment platform company that is developing the PacTour site and the battle of the bands competition. For brands to be successful, especially with a younger demographic, they have to create opportunities that allow consumers to participate in the brand experience rather than simply listen to the brand’s message, the vendor says.

“I have seen from both sides how FameCast delivers a great experience for both artists and fans, as well as a break-through marketing platform for brands,” says PacSun music manager Josh Hubberman, who was formerly in a band that won a spot on a similar concert tour produced by FameCast for a different sponsor.

Pacific Sunwear is No. 275 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide.

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