Have you ever loved a song so much, you get disappointed when you eventually have an image of the artist behind the song? I know i have! Quite a number of times by many Nigerian artists who shall not be named, because..well it’s a new year! *sips tea*.
A lot of artists i have come across (i should probably start name dropping here..*Kanye shrug*) have no identity at all..I hear their music, see them and i find myself looking to the sky wondering how on earth such person thinks a music career is the right choice for him/her.
In this age of social media for an artist, your brand probably has a lot more influence on your fans than your music does..i have had conversations with a lot of RiRi fans who actually don’t like her music, but just love her style;brand!. Your brand separates you from every
Tom, Dick and Harry Tochuckwu,Deji and Haruna out there jumping around with a Mic.
Branding speaks volumes and it goes a long way in keeping an artist in the limelight, getting an artist endorsement deals well, that’s how it should be, but the endorsement deals in Naija these days…lips sealed and what not. When you think branding for an artist, think Jay Z! Then this write up will definitely make more sense to you especially if you are an artist.
Before i go on blabbing, let me address the issue here and give my professional (yes! Professional..lol) advice on branding and what it means for an artist.
First things first, the important step after your decision to pursue a music career is to understand who you are as a person, and how this identifies with your music. These two aspects have to be merged, for instance, if you are an ‘agbero’ looking to be an RnB artist? Fine! Look for a way to merge this, you just might be the pioneer of something new (Disclaimer: this is at your own risk.Lmao). A lot of times, i have seen talented artists with brands that are detached from their music and so they spend forever trying to get out of the ‘Next Rated’ zone..sigh!.
Second! Surround yourself with a professional team; this includes your manager, publicist, stylist et al. One important thing to note when choosing a team though, is to make sure you get professionals who have the requisite knowledge for the job. Especially with publicists, don’t just go for social media hype men with no solid PR or crisis management background. Work with a publicist who knows what it means to create a brand that depicts who you are, your music and most importantly, knows how to sell that brand to your fans.
Finally, your brand is nothing if you lack confidence! In other words, if you don’t believe in your brand or are not comfortable with it, it really won’t work. YOU make the brand so you need to have the right attitude for it, as the popular saying goes ‘you cannot give what you don’t have’.
As a side note; I am however, not encouraging artists to focus all their energy on branding and neglect the music like Eja Nla he who shall not be named. *hehe*. So before i drop my pen, dear artist, who are you?