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What Hip Hop taught me about "Marketing"

By: Sabrina Clarke

· Entrepreneurship,Lateral Theory,Media

Hip Hop is arguably built on marketing. Whether that is the big budgets allocated by the labels, the organic reach of independent artists or the underground backpack community and the codes they have perfected through the years, artists that are marketed well reap the benefits. The main lessons Hip Hop has taught me about marketing are:

- Organic can be as effective as paid
- Build anticipation
- Petty and Beefing are effective if consistent with your brand

Let's look at a case study.

Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson probably would have been a Chief Marketing Officer if he didn't choose to be an artist. His playbook for marketing is not for everyone but is highly effective. From his album to the Poweruniverse drops throughout the years, we all know when a 50 project will come. How?

- He starts beefing or is petty towards someone or something
- A contract or deal will be up for renewal or in discussion
- Cryptic messages will be on social media
- There is an Announcement of " Coming Soon"
- The announcement is released and is followed by paid promotions

It works every time because he is so effective at his playbook, and pettiness has become part of his brand. One of my favourite moments is when he used the " Winter is coming" tagline to an actor he lent money to in the weeks leading up to the winter release of Power. Genius.

Disclaimer: Petty works for 50, not everyone. If you're like me, stick to the rivers and lakes that you are used to.

Episode 14 of BRKIN Bread, my audio visual podcast for the hungry mind drops tonight and it's all about Hip Hop.


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