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What Hip Hop taught me about "Longevity"

By: Sabrina Clarke

· Lateral Theory,Media,Entrepreneurship

Hip Hop's attrition and turnover culture are like most multinational companies. The burnout and runway are short for most. The return on investment has to be justified; add that to questionable dealings and shady contracts, and only a few are still around and/or have lasted over 25 years in the industry. However, there are three main lessons about longevity for those who are still around I have learnt:

- Create evergreen content
- Focus on your base
- Innovate. They will catch-up

There are so many people to mention about longevity, honourable mention to Busta Rymes, who finally won his lifetime achievement award at the BET awards this year.

Let's look at a case study.

Missy Misdemeanor Elliot was part of an RnB group Sista and joined the Swing Mob Collective, but when she stepped on the scene as a solo artist in 1997 with Supa Dupa Fly, it was a wrap. She redesigned what Hip Hop looked and sounded like.

Missy brought Hip Hop into a future that had yet to arrive (and still has yet to). She fused all the elements of Hip Hop and made content that we still refer to and can rock to. Missy was the first female Hip Hop artist to be inducted into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame, and she continues to break barriers 26 years after her debut album. She is the personification of longevity.

Longevity is how I approach my businesses. Its the long game.

Ps. I am celebrating Hip Hop's 50th with my series in July, "What Hip Hop taught me about..."