protecting your brand in the music industry

The new Fast Company Magazine has a great article that highlights Musictoday through their relationship with R&B singer/songriter John Legend. The article is worth reading to hear how Music today is revolutionizing the way that artists interact with their fans (using the power of the internet), but what I found most interesting were some of the John Legend quotes.

Apparently, before getting into the music industry John Legend worked as a consultant in Boston. The advice that he gave himself when he got into music was to protect his own brand.

Legend, who’s 28, knew people would be lining up to take a piece of every dollar he could pull down, and that if he went the traditional route, there wasn’t much he could do to stop them. After all, it was the label, retailers, and ticket companies in the sweet spot at the center of every transaction with his fans. “I can’t let someone else have more control over the relationship people have with my music than I do,” he says.

That advice should be taken by people in any business; pay close attention to the experience that patrons have with your product. A lot of good companies focus on making good products, but great companies have good products and create great customer experiences (eg. starbucks, apple, willow creek church).

Of course, the flip side of the previous statement is that positive customer experiences won’t do you a lot of good without a good product. In that light, the article ends with this quote from Legend:

But if I don’t make good music, none of this stuff is going to work. I never forget that.


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