This article was originally published on reverb, Drake Cooper’s reflections on advertising, creativity, and trends. Read more.

Reinventing Mardi Gras on Social Media


Fabulous article on how NOLA resident Tom Martin, also prez of Zehnder Communications, plans to use social media to convey “the real Mardi Gras,” which truly is a culturally-rich, tradition-based, family-friendly experience.

Nerd alert: I’m so excited to see how this effort pays-off in educating the masses that Mardi Gras is actually NOT the scene of debauchery on Bourbon Street that mass media make it out to be.

When I experienced Mardi Gras as a pseudo-local alongside the natives, we only hit up Bourbon St. once. It was so crowded and reminiscent of an out-of-control frat party that we retreated uptown for more muffulettas and King Cake. The music uptown is always better too – whether it’s Mardi Gras season or not.

The mornings were spent jockeying for a ‘tailgate’ spot along parade routes on streets like St. Charles, next to families, college kids, couples, dogs, freaks in costumes; lots of eccentricity. When the parades roll, you can catch some really good beads and hear fabulous music. Sure, you are drinking the entire time. But in between parades you usually retreat to one house or another and gorge on fish fries, crawfish boils (if it’s an early season), aforementioned muffulettas, etc.

That was my Mardi Gras experience. It seemed more steeped in amazing food and sitting around peoples’ homes socializing and having a raucous good time doing so than vomiting or losing your shirt on Bourbon Street.