Purpose – The choice of a well-planned integrated marketing communication (IMC) strategy is crucial for the successful launch of an event. This paper is a case-study based description of how a brand management consultancy house, TMC, used IMC to launch a world music festival event in Abu Dhabi, UAE, in 2009, registering a visitorship of five-times their target, 89 per cent satisfaction and a staggering 99 per cent of the visitors planning to visit the festival again in 2010. Design/methodology/approach – A literature review on event marketing, megamarketing and integrated marketing communications is conducted to illustrate the challenges involved in launching communication campaigns in the marketing of events. Primary research was conducted by way of in-depth interviews with TMH and the case study is developed based on the information furnished. Findings – Event marketing requires the support of a well-crafted IMC plan to realise the objectives set for the event. This paper brings out the role of public relations, direct marketing, social media networking, advertising and media planning in the IMC campaign launched by a brand management consultancy house and how it successfully achieved the objectives for the event. Practical implications – Traditional communication media may not be sufficient to succeed in the current media clutter and over-communicated market place. In this context, social networking media are emerging as a new media type and are an important addition to the current media. Understanding the target audience and preparing a customised media mix involving traditional and modern media may have a synergistic effect on end results. Originality/value – The paper provides the marketers with an IMC perspective to analyse traditional and emerging media types and integrate them with a communications plan to optimise end results. In particular, the paper brings out the need for total customisation of media mix for different market conditions.