I’m not gonna lie, I’m a big fan of hip/hop. For about 10 years, I’ve been been very focused on everything JayZ has done in and out of the music studio. This year, both Jay and his wife released new albums. The fascinating thing is how both of them leveraged the media to promote the albums and get them to platinum status.
First, let’s start with Jay. It all started with this commercial that he debuted during the NBA finals:
But that was just the beginning. The day before the album was released, Jay spent a few hours on twitter answering questions (even random questions). The result? As of December 15 of this year, the album has sold over 1,083,000 units and was certified 2x platinum.
Now, let’s take a look at Beyonce. As opposed to Jay, she didn’t do any upfront announcement about her new album, she literally just announced it - it was released through the iTunes store and she posted the album art on her instagram feed. Interestingly, in the days leading up to the album dropping, she and Jay generated some PR (and some backlash) by announcing that they were going vegan for 22 days. Further, she also spent $37k on Holiday gifts at a random Walmart in Boston. The result? Her album sales are already nearing 1 million units - and the album has only been out two weeks!
So what can we learn from all of this? Advertisers continue to say that, tv, print, radio and web continue to be the main forces in driving distribution. And to a certain extent, that’s true. But marketers should continue to look outside the ‘powerhouse’ channels of distribution and look for other ways to get their message out. Be creative with your marketing (I thought #ubertree from Uber and the home depot was fantastic) and focus in on where your customers are.