Walking out of the studio the other night, I ran into a professional recording artist (who shall remain nameless) who told me that they had just gotten back from an all day conference centered around Branding in the Music Industry. Companies like Tiffany & Co. Black Berry, Sprint, different clothing lines as well as their record label were all said to be in attendance. They told me that they were asked questions by different companies about the importance of branding within the music industry and the affects of it. Of course I found this to be CBBlog gold and could not wait to share this info with you guys. There seem as if there was some branding analysis going on at the event as well, being that I was told that there was a picture of Beyonce projected on the screen during the conference accompanied by a few Blurbs which specific details are unknown to me but I can only assume they were under the context of branding.
Needless to say how apparent and necessary Branding is becoming within the entertainment industry excites me. Reason being is that I’ve been observing the importance of this from the early 2000’s and the difference in success and recognition from the entertainers who implemented this and the ones who did not, and it truly makes a vast difference. It really separates a star from the rest to the fans and the industry, it creates tons more opportunities for artistic outlets, partnerships, sponsorships and more. So taking the time out to learn how to brand yourself and to find the most fitting brand for you as an entertainer and implanting it properly can make all the difference in the world.
Hey guys it’s been a while but CB Blog is back, and the 1st thing I would like to discuss is VOTE FOR ME!!!! :). You can be at ease I am not in a position requesting that you vote for me in some type of contest, but I did find it necessary to discuss a couple of ways to go about getting your followers to vote for you in the case that you might be in a competition that requires public votes to win. I can strongly relate to this concept, earlier this year my group Tha Boogie was chosen to be a part of the Rolling Stone Magazine Cover Contest, where they had chosen 16 bands from across the country & canada to compete to be the 1st unsigned band in history on the cover of the magazine. There is no question that we were totally stoked to have been chosen but then came the “VOTE FOR ME!!!!” kick we had to be on for months on end.
The biggest hurdle to get over was the guilt or possibility of looking desperate asking your followers to cast their vote and pass on the word. We were a little nervous about filling our timelines on our social networking sites up with a ton of solicitations. Being that we our selves found it a bit distracting to see the same updates from a user, let alone ones constantly asking for support. Fortunately I have a cousin who specializes in online marketing who gave us some simple yet tremendous advice. She told us that promoting something with a soliciting purpose is never a bad thing, and you have to realize that even updates that do not mention any thing about a competition you are in continue to build the momentum you need from your followers to keep there attention during the times that you do mention said contest. So the moral of the time line story is to space out mentions of solicitation to your followers with genuine entertaining updates, that you should normally be doing on your social networking sites anyway. I would say that 60/40 is a good ratio the 60 being normal updates and the 40 being the solicitation updates. Remember your followers in your network do want to support you in your endeavors, so be sure you give the opportunity to do so.
Conserving Your Brand
To follow the time line etiquette or some form of it is crucial in regards to conserving your brand in the midst of having to take on a promotions heavy endeavor. You want to avoid coming across as robotic or with a tone of constantly asking your followers for the same thing it quickly loses peoples interest, and that is sometimes hard to get back. You want to try to make sure that everything you stood for prior to something like you being a part of a competition remains through out. Whether it be really entertaining play by play daily ins and outs, our posting interesting art, music or articles (which I’m a big advocate of) to your social networking sites, be sure that these habits don’t get lost in the sauce per-say and that they still remain present to your followers. No matter what the circumstance people don’t want to feel like what initially caught their interest in you is no longer a factor to you, so just be mindful in maintaining all those things that make you cool and interesting.
Avoiding The Competition
Some people may feel like this article does not apply to them, because they would try to avoid being in such a constructed competition. Which I can’t say is a bad thing, the only thing I would say take in to consideration is that in entertainment we’ve have become subject to very competition based opportunities. When (and yes I’m gonna say it) American Idol first came on the air, artist and viewers alike did not see the contestants as talent who would have viable careers but boy were we proven wrong, with success stories like your Carrie Underwood’s & Kelly Clarkson’s who both achieved great heights as musicians after winning the competition based show that depends on the viewers picking the winner. In today’s market place it seems to matter very little how people were introduced to you or your talent but more so whether or not they recognize you, so for some avoiding this competitions maybe be a goal but American Idol has had a major affect on the entertainment industry and it’s major players, Rolling Stone Magazine for example who created a competition with a similar foundation based on their readers and website visitors votes. So at one time or another we may encounter great opportunities besieged by a constructed competition in our rise to the top on several occasions.
Vote For Me!!! Please Buy My…
Even if being able to avoid the traditional competition based opportunity, with in entertainment there will always come a time where you need to solicit something from your followers, whether it be merchandise, album purchases, concert, movie, or theatre/play tickets, there will undoubtedly be something, because the purpose of the entertainment industry is to literally attempt to entertain someone whether you consider that someone part of a small or large demographic. As an entertainer we need people’s interest, so even if you’re not asking someone to vote for you, maybe you need them to see that you’ve just release an EP, published an article, posted a new video on youtube, etc. Anything you are trying to direct traffic to you can use the timeline etiquette mentioned earlier to do so. This concept whether it be for a competition or not is to give you the tools to utilize your networks in the most beneficial way, for you and your followers. The people who follow and support you want to see you succeed, so it would not hurt to go about giving them the opportunity to do so in a cognizant way.
Branding yourself is something you have to take in to consideration with just about every move you make in your professional career and a very important asset to our Brand is a well thought out presentation of your Brand. We head to the Actors Corner and H for some words of advice with presenting yourself/Brand properly in a cover letter. Take a look below for some well needed information about the do’s and don’ts of cover letters.
Cover Letter Madness!
The contents of a cover letter can either make or break a first impression. You have to approach your cover letter thinking that the person you are sending your cover letter to has not even had a chance to meet you in person! I see tons of mistakes that people make while submitting to different agencies and firms. Here are a few tips on making your cover letter stand out!
Many people who receive your cover letter are very busy. Your cover letter should not be more than about 2 paragraphs. There is a saying in journalism that is simply referred to as KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid)…we’ll take out the stupid part for the sake of not offending people. Keep your cover letter simple. Tell us just a bit about yourself. How did you hear about my company? Have you heard good things about my company? Were you referred by a client of mine? What can you bring to my roster of talent? Why are you interested in my company? These are great questions that should be answered in your submission!
2. Please do not come off arrogant!
Yes, if you work in entertainment you more than likely have a big personality. It’s great to show personality in your submission but you never want to come off arrogant. Who would want to work with somebody like that? If you’re coming off as an arrogant person in your cover letter then chances are the person reading it will think that you will be a problem when you get to set. Believe me, this is an industry where you do not want to upset anybody! If your agent or manager hears about you being problematic on set….needless to say….you’re kinda screwed.
3. Make it personable!
Find out who you are submitting to. If you start off by saying “Dear sir or madam” or “To whom it may concern” your submission will look generic. It looks a lot better when you put the first name of the recipient. “Hi Howard” or “Hi Susan” looks way better than “Dear random person that I’m submitting to”.
You as a brand are also looked at as a product. While watching commercials we are sold on numerous things that we don’t even need! I’m even thinking about buying 30 different Boost Mobile phones just because those commercials are so funny! I don’t necessarily need them, but I want them! Why? It’s because of the way they sell their products. It’s their creative pitch that they use! As an entertainer you have to know how to sell yourself. It could be everything from headshots and websites, to the way you dress and interact with people.
“Before doing research to find your Brand, do some remembering to find yourself. Remember you are your Brand, and you always have been.”
The One They Call NuSchool
When ever I find an article on Branding that I’m completely in agreeance with, it excites me because it reiterates my own perspective on Branding. Here is another something I found via Outspoke Media that undoubtedly will shake your doubts about when and what to say and not to say while representing your Brand on your Social Media web pages. Although we sometimes see people with nice sized followings saying things on there Twitter pages or Facebook post that may seem antithetical to what this article is saying, I can a sure you it is because of one of two reasons; either this Brand is in the process of tarnishing what they built or this Brand’s foundation is made up of avoiding things like common sense. Never the less people do grow weary of things of this nature and do tend to move on from Brands that don’t exercise enough personal constraint. Check out the article below:
Musician, Fashionista, Visual Artist, Political Activist
As a musician what has made Lady Gaga’s Brand unique, is the fact that she is a pop star who is a classically trained pianist. When she began to incorporate her skill on the piano she bonded it with her knack for visual art, i.e. playing a piano engulfed in flames during her 2010 performance of her song “Speechless” in Montreal.
Another element that is very near and dear to the Lady Gaga Brand is her eccentric sense of fashion. She has made a slew of fashion statements during some of her most memorable public appearances. This can be exemplified by taking a close look at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, where she made up to 5 wardrobe changes including her performance outfit. This act alone began to get people noticing Gaga’s knack for extreme fashion and caused that to be closely associated with her over all Brand.
Lady Gaga also chose the 2009 VMA’s to seize that monumental moment where she would no longer just be known as Lady Gaga the Up & Coming Pop Star, she would be on her way to becoming Lady Gaga the icon giving her the right to this Brand Analysis. This moment occurred on stage during her performance of her song “Paparazzi” where she was dressed in her signature almost swim wear-like outfits, this one in particular seemed to be sculpted from a wedding dress with an accompanying mask. While having the attendees and viewers at home fully engaged from her energetic and interesting dance routine, she took the performance a step further by sitting down at grand piano and showing her piano chops for a brief second only to carry on to the moment everyone remembered that year where she ended her performance covered in blood, playing out the death of a pop star caused by fame.
When crafting a personal Brand as an entertainer it is good to stand for something, take a position on a cause you feel strongly about. This is not suppose to be done solely to make your Brand appealing to the public, but this shows that you, the representative of your Brand has a pulse for what is going on in the world. Lady Gaga has shown us this by her taking an active stand on Gay Rights. She has not been shy about her views on the fact that she believes in equality for all people, but has even gone so far as to share her own Bi-sexuality with the public, while maintaining an untarnished Brand.
This stance has garnered her a large fan base in the gay community, which she is completely aware of based off of the context of a few of her hit songs such as “Born This Way” ,which she encourages people that they are on the right track because no matter what they are they were born that way. Your Brand has to be cohesive with your product and they both have to be appealing to your consumer. If Lady Gaga branded her self as she has but made music that did not cater to the people who find her brand appealing or vise versa, she would not be fulfilling her Brand’s over all potential.
These are some of the key elements that crafted the Lady Gaga brand into what it is today, which is by the way a very lucrative business for her and all of those who are associated with the Brand, which has an alleged net worth of $110 Million dollars. You can win, by crafting the proper Brand for you, but it takes a bit of self discovery to know who you are, to build a Brand that is truly yours.When it comes to Branding something to keep in mind is that everyones brand is different, because we are all different to a certain degree. Those things that truly make you who you are once realized and adequately capitalized on will play a key role in crafting the perfect Brand that will be the best representation of you, and the best representation of you is you.
~The One They Call NuSchool
I truly have to say that I am most excited about this article than all the other articles published on CBBlog so far, reason being this comes straight from our Actors Corner and was written by H, one of CBBlog’s main contributors. Take a gander and help build your perspective on the the actors “Brand Vs Type”
Brand vs. Type
While working in entertainment two of the most valuable tools that you will need is the knowledge of who you are as an actor and how to market yourself. We throw around words like type and brand a lot, but do we really know how to differentiate between the two words? As an actor myself I hear these words on a daily basis. Here is a brief breakdown of how to differ between the two.
" We’re watching to see if your brand is the same on your blog as it is on Twitter, as it is in real life. ”
"People can tell when you’re being you or when you’re being your best impression of someone else. To create a successful personal brand, you want to find yourself.” i
I’ve come to find some interesting articles discussing brands on my search to bring you quality perspectives on how to shape your own brand properly. Running into this article on the Outspoken Media website, which I’m falling more and more in love with, really lent some awesome things to keep in mind when “Building Your Brand On The Eyes Of The Masses” Below you will find the article “7 Habits Killing Your Personal Brand” By Lisa Barone in full. Some of you might ask why starting out I’ve chosen to post the articles I’ve come across during my research, reason being is that there is a certain clarity that comes about from reading over the context of the source, and that is a clarity I want you to have when building your brand.
"Your brand is your emotional DNA. It’s that feeling a potential customer gets when they have a need and top of mind brings up your name. Your brand and the feeling you give them in the pit of their stomach is what determines whether you get that lead or if they’ll instead go to a competitor.”
- Outspoken Media