‘Trep On: Business Lessons That Fiesta Can Teach Us

Fiesta is here. It has officially arrived, effective yesterday.

Ten days of crazy, a week and a half of parties, celebrations, booze, more parties, parades, galas, shows, more parties and the hurrah that the parties support more than one hundred charities across the city. Fiesta San Antonio began in 1891 as a one-parade event. It has evolved into one of the premier festivals in the U.S., with an economic impact of more than $284 million for the Alamo City.

On Monday, we’ll have our annual Fiesta celebration during the Cavaliers River Parade at The Worm (Thanks, Chris Erck!) – so, don’t miss that. But first – let us indulge you in a few lessons that Fiesta can teach us as business folk.

1. Celebrate. Fiesta, in its essence, is made for us to celebrate – celebrate our city, the culture, victories. It’s something we need to do within our businesses, as well. In one aspect of celebrating – we can’t always take ourselves so seriously in business, and sometimes, we need to throw back, have some jokes and relax. [Enter: The cascarone] In another aspect, the element of celebration teaches us to celebrate wins. Yesterday, in the office, we started cheering (literally, out loud) when a member of the team made an achievement. It put such a great vibe in the air and pushed us forward with a sense of happiness and renewed accomplishment throughout the day. So, why not celebrate and cheer?

2. Grow steadily with strategic planning. Fiesta started in 1891 as a one-parade event. This year, there are three major parades, the Cavaliers Parade, Battle of the Flowers Parade and the Fiesta Flambeau Parade, in addition to 97 other events. Yes, it’s a 100-event celebration. But it didn’t go from one to one hundred. It progressively grew over time to have 100 official events across the city, benefiting more than 100 non-profit organizations (another lesson – give back to the community that supports you in business) – coming together to, “Party for a Purpose.”

3. Tailor to your audience. Like I mentioned above, there are 100 events – not all of the one million-plus people who live in this city go to every single one of them. There is something for everyone. However, there are SO many types of individuals who want to be involved. So, what did Fiesta do? They approved official events that would target to different audiences that still kept the brand alive and opened the door to new pockets of the city to host tailored events – like St. Mary’s Oyster Bake, Taste of the Northside, the King William Fair and Alamo Heights Night. Some of these targeted the college audience, others the family audience and others the reach to specific areas of town – they events are branded with Fiesta, but specifically tailor the interests of the various audiences around the city. So, realize that you have a key demographic and stay true to them, but also realize the opportunity in the broader audience that still has interest in your product or service and find ways to meet them where they are to maximize your profits and reach.

There you have it – now it’s nearly noon, so that means there must be some Fiesta party brewing up somewhere. Viva!

DRJ_fiesta fiesta_0415



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