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Beyoncé’s Social Media Album Release

By December 16, 2013 July 20th, 2014 Social Media For Touring Acts

“I wanted the people to hear the songs with the story”
“I miss that immersive experience.”
“It’s important that we made this an experience”
“I wanted everyone to see how personal everything is to me”

1beyonceBeyonce released her fifth studio album last week. While noteworthy in its own right, what is really making heads turn is the manner in which she and her camp decided to release it.

The usual methodology for album releases is the initial single insertion into heavy rotation at radio stations around the world, coupled with the blather of television interviews and supported with a heavy promotional spend on commercials and tie-ins with retailers and various consumer brands.

But Beyonce, with her 54 million Facebook fans and 8 million Instagram followers, realized what we all should be taking note of.

She realized that more than a recording artist, she is a publishing company, a distribution source, a promotional marketing enterprise…she IS the media. We all are the media. She realized the most important part of social media that many brands and advertising agencies are missing. It’s 100% about the fans.

“There’s so much that gets between the music, the artist and the fans, I felt like I didn’t want anybody to give the message when my record is coming out. I just want this to come out when it’s ready and from me to my fans.”

In releasing her new album she executed the ultimate surprise and delight. She posted this:

With that 16 seconds or so of marketing brilliance, Beyonce dropped 14 songs and 17 videos in her album release and sold over 365,000 copies in the United States alone…on the FIRST DAY! In contrast, Lady Gaga and her label have lost nearly $25 Million dollars in promoting her album.

Social media exploded when the news broke. Twitter reported that over 1 million tweets were generated in the first 12 hours. She created more buzz than Sharknado!

Even those in the music business were shell-shocked. And their comments on Twitter indicate that not only were they taken by surprise, but also that they’ve seen the era of traditional marketing and advertising end.

“It’s an instant classic, a game changer,” said Dion Summers, who programs urban music at Sirius XM Radio.

Welcome to the realization of the value exchange. We’ve ushered in the new era of social media. A new way to advertise. We are all going to learn the “marketing value of no marketing“.

Thank you to Beyonce for absolutely underscoring what my research has been showing me to be the case. I penned an article that put me out on an island in the social media world.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the state of social media and I believe we’re about to see the marketing world turned upside down and inside out. Conventional Wisdom be damned. I believe that social media, as it’s being executed today, will lead us to the crossroads in 2014.

I believe that we’re on the precipice of a major disruption. And I for one, welcome it and believe it’s coming not a minute too soon.


Barry Cunningham

Author Barry Cunningham

Barry Cunningham is an antagonist of conventional wisdom. Check out our case studies. They will give you an idea how we help brands & businesses amplify their conversion and lead gen campaigns by deploying digital advertising campaigns at scale. And I invite you to subscribe to my newsletter.

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