Rapper. Hip-hop mogul. Author. Basketball team owner. Fashion designer. Music producer. Actor. Jay-Z can call himself many things. And we say, add one more: brilliant marketer.
So do Rory Findlay and Dick Patton, who lead the global Consumer Products and Marketing Officer practices of Egon Zehnder. They recently wrote: “… the CMO is transforming into a chief engagement officer who will operate more like Jay-Z than J. Walter Thompson – seemingly everywhere at once.”
As the word of communications changes at rapid-fire speed, the CMO as we know him or her is becoming extinct, replaced by a constantly connected, risk-taking chief engagement officer who lives and breathes the brand.
Here are three reasons why:
1. Living your brand is no longer enough.
Brand authenticity is still important, but your audiences must live your brand, too. Jay-Z made it easy in 2011, when he launched Life and Times, a lifestyle site curated with content based on his interests. With the rapper contributing to each piece of content, fans are immersed in Jay-Z’s brand.
2. Conversations don’t stop.
Every day in 2012, 175 million tweets were sent from Twitter. More than 5 million photos are uploaded to Instagram daily. Twenty-three percent of Facebook’s users check their account five or more times daily. You get the idea – the majority of us are communicating virtually non-stop throughout our days.
The days of one-sided dialogue via a simple press release or advertisement are over. Successful marketers cross channels and immerse their audiences to allow for ongoing, two-way conversations. Whether tweeting with fans, partying with them at events or watching as they chase down his book pages across the world (see below), Jay-Z is seemingly everywhere, interacting with his audiences.
3. You have to push the limits to get noticed.
Marketing – and the communications world as a whole – is undergoing a radical transformation. With technology and the ways we connect seemingly evolving daily, if you aren’t trying new things and taking smart, strategic risks, you’ll be left behind in the digital dust.
Jay-Z ventured into new territory with Bing’s Decoded campaign to promote his new book – and it’s still being talked about. To increase its relevance with young audiences, Bing worked with Jay-Z to place every page of his new book in its own location, spanning 13 major cities across the world. The contents of each page correlated with its location, and clues were provided daily via social media. Via an online game, fans found the pages and assembled them before the book hit stores.
The results of this never-before-done campaign? Jay-Z’s Facebook page fan base grew by 1 million, and his book spent 19 weeks on best-selling lists. The campaign was covered by every news outlet and talked and tweeted about by celebs. And Bing? It saw an 11.7 percent increase in visits in just one month and become one of the global top 10 most visited sites for the first time.
Want to get delve deeper in this Jay-Z marketing state of mind? Read Findlay and Patton’s original article on AdAge.com.