There is a ton of talent in the world. Many want their share of fame and fortune in the entertainment industry. The problem is most aspiring artists are blending in with what is current and trending instead of trying to set a new standard that many will never get discovered. Even if the artist gets discovered, it may take longer than it would have if the artist would have had their own image. Once they finally have some shine based on the current trend, the next “trend” has already begun to work it’s way through the industry and the artist will again have to adjust to stay relevant.
This can be avoided by differentiation. The artist with their branding team will need to understand what sets them a part from all of the other talent in their category. What works for Justin Bieber may not work for August Alsina, even though both artists are truly talented in the R&B music industry. Lets take a quick look into how August Alsina’s image differs from Justin Bieber’s:
Starting posting on YouTube and following grew
Got into drug dealing before being discovered
Released other mix tapes previous before his official first release
One released studio featured album
Newer to the entertainment industry compared to Justin Bieber
Preparing for this first official tour
Started posting on YouTube and following grew
No released mix tapes prior to first official album release
Four released studio albums to date
Has had a longevity in the music industry compared to August having finished a worldwide tour that lasted over a year
Got into legal trouble after speculation of drug and alcohol abuse
As you can see these two artists are very different in their careers. August Alsina has opportunities coming his way so he can focus on to further his career. Justin Bieber has to deal with the legal troubles from his DUI arrest in Florida and his infamous egg throwing incident to one of his California neighbors.
The media loves to report chaos and negativity for sales and website hits. Until Bieber resolves all of his legal issues, he will continue to be followed by the paparazzi in hopes that they can catch the next chaotic thing Justin will do. It’s unfortunate that rising talent will have to fight to get media attention for the good things that they’re trying to do but that is the way the media world works.
Outer appearance is a part of the image, along with the artist’s story. For Justin Bieber he was a cute 15 year old with adorable hair and everyone wanted to interview him. All talk shows wanted to have Bieber perform on their shows. An artist’s image should invite journalists and reporters to want to get to know you better. For August Alsina you will usually see him in sunglasses. This could prompt journalists and reporters to ask more questions as this can be seen to some people as “hiding” from the public. Either way, it welcomes people to ask questions to get a better understanding. Now August Alsina is more open either wearing fake glasses or not wearing any at all.
How can an artist get more media coverage about the GOOD things they are doing? Consider hiring a publicist to help figure out how to not only set the artist a part but how to STAND OUT from the competition. It is important to understand what image the artist will want to portray with the media so the media can tell the artist’s story for them.
Side note: I’m doing freelance work for Elvie G PR out of Los Angeles, CA. Are you a musician that needs public relations work? Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to see what we can do for your brand/image!
The following is a note I had written when I was 18 (so don’t judge of improper grammar lol) to myself when I decided whenever I decide to look through my high school yearbook.
“You have done it. You are finally done with high school. Now it really gets real. You are about to experience the real world. The opportunity has arrived to further your education. Another door is about to open. You must always no matter what happens, put your love and trust into God & your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. If you put your faith in Them, you’ll be worry-free. Never give up and put your best work in EVERYTHING you do. Don’t settle for less. Give the best and you will receive the best. Don’t forget where you come from. If you remember your roots you will not lose yourself. Never forget who and what has shaped you into becoming the woman you are today. If it wasn’t for them, you would be lost. Most importantly, HAVE FUN !! :)”
My 18-year-old self reminded me of where I started from and where I will be going. Fascinating out your former self can put things back into perspective and reassure you.
I recent read an article by Ryan McShane via PRDaily.com about the 4 myths about PR agencies. McShane had some very good points. Even though I’ve only interned virtually with different public relations agencies, I would like to talk about how starting out in-house has helped benefit my career.
Just as McShane stated, you must evaluate each job opportunity, whether in-house or agency, independently to see if which would be the best fit. I’m from NC and there were not any agencies hiring at the time I was looking for full-time employment in public relations. I was able to find an assistant position in-house, doing marketing and PR for a snack company. There were so many things the company began to do to build brand awareness that I got to travel 3 weeks after graduation to Chicago for a trade show. I love to travel and I was really excited not only to travel, but to meet and work with our sales representatives that do not live where our offices were headquartered.
After realizing my passion for PR, I’ve noticed that to work full-time in PR, companies wanted you to have so many years experience working in agencies. That’s when I decided to look for part-time work at different PR agencies. Because of my full-time job working in-house PR, I had to find something virtual that could fit around my schedule. Since then, I’ve worked three different part-time virtual unpaid internships with different agencies all over the nation. You must take initiative and show the hiring managers that you are serious about working in the industry.
McShane stated that agency experience was short-term. This is not always the case. I signed an internship agreement with my previous internship based out of Portland to work for three months. I ended up loving the job so much, that I stayed another three months and would have stayed longer, had not my full-time job didn’t impede outside of my 9-5 business hours. You must know when to say no and when to scale back while working an internship. If it is starting to affect your school work or your full-time work, then adjustments must be made.
For me, starting out in-house doing PR has definitely helped my work that I do through my virtual internships. Starting my career doing in-house PR has really helped me focus on what’s best for the brand, the company, and the product/service. Exploring all avenues and choosing the best method for my company is what I do on a daily basis. Now I can use that perspective when completing my work for my virtual internship, while working with the agency’s multiple clients. It will definitely give you a leg-up when finally landed that agency position.
Where did your PR career start? How has it benefited you since then?