BY LOUIS MARINO | Fast Company
What do Lady Gaga and direct-to-consumer marketing have in common? The answer is a lot.
Building communities all starts with finding a common thread that brings people together. Experiences help define or typify what a community is all about. A community can be extremely close knit, yet very different when looked at on an individual level. But the commonality is that every community has a soul, and to tap into its soul in a meaningful way unlocks all its secrets.
Before joining experiential marketing agency MKTG INC as their Executive Creative Director two years ago, I worked extensively in the music industry. There, I learned an awful lot about musicians. No, not their hard-living lifestyles and jaw-dropping spending habits. I’m talking about their incredible sense of community and loyalty.
I worked for five years at Island DefJam, a label that has a wide-ranging artist roster covering everything from hip-hop to R&B to country. You might think that a rapper from Brooklyn wouldn’t have much reason (or desire) to connect with a country crooner out of Arkansas. But as it turned out, the opposite was true–I soon saw that they were actually a very tightknit community. No matter their genre or origins, these musicians unfailingly came out to support each other, watch each other’s performances, hang out backstage, share ideas, and make music together. It was clear that they truly loved and respected each other. That steady support and genuine respect formed the basis of their community. As do all communities, they shared common interests and a like-mindedness that was real and authentic.
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