quality + consistency = momentum.
QUALITY (your job)
Quality is not subjective. “Quality product” = professional product. No more, no less. You might hate Drake’s music, but that doesn’t mean Drake’s music is low quality. That’s a matter of taste, and taste is much trickier. Quality is the (relatively) easy part. Quality in hip-hop music means that on every song:
- You are rapping on beat, and/or singing on key. And if you’re not, it’s a deliberate artistic decision, not a mistake.
- Your studio recordings, music videos, album/single art, press shots and branding are being engineered by professionals.
Quality means you’re aiming for a mark, and hitting it.
CONSISTENCY (our job)
Consistency is more important than quality. Consistency breeds quality, and everyone you need to win over in order to succeed needs to see consistency – record industry people, the algorithms (they’re effectively people at this point, and believe me, they’re listening), and most importantly, fans. Most people need to see your name in at least three places before they press play. Consistency achieves that, and it tells us you’re serious. Almost everyone has one good song in them. Do you have one great song in you? How about 20?
Each campaign has a bunch of moving parts which all need to move at just the right time, every month. Each social and streaming platform is its own universe of rules and hacks, each containing millions of users with very different tastes, and it all equals countless chances to waste time and money. We simplify the process using:
- A release schedule and procedure built upon a philosophy of quality and consistency. Two weeks before your next release, your campaign is fully locked and loaded, ready to drop. On the day we drop your new release, we’re already planning your next release.
- A team of professionals who each specialize on one social or streaming platform (Youtube, Spotify, Facebook, Instagram, Soundcloud and Twitter) or network (bloggers, and DJs). They work with you to optimize your presentation on each platform, and they make sure each platform’s myriad of tools and tricks are working overtime for you. Uploading your song is the first step in a campaign, not the last.
- A data team which constantly combs every platform and network for everyone in the world who actually cares about the kind of music you make, and makes sure they’re the focus of your campaign. 10,000 real fans beats 1,000,000 unengaged followers any day of the week and Christmas too.
MOMENTUM (the goal)
Momentum means your music is taking on a life of its own. It’s going out into the world without you, popping up in weird places, and returning with more and more of the people you used to spend half your time chasing down. You’re still busting your ass like always, but the same amount of ass busted yields many times more returns. Momentum doesn’t necessarily mean success. An artist can have momentum without having a hit. But momentum means the game is yours to lose. You rappers emailing us in the middle of the night asking what kind of results we can “guarantee” in all caps are a bit too optimistic. The Gracenote global music database had 200 million tracks in 2018. Every day, roughly 25,000 tracks – fifty days of listening time – are added, and almost all those songs ends up in the same blog, magazine and radio station email inboxes, next to yours. But blogs and magazines and even radio don’t make stars anymore – the people do. All the money you can find to throw at the problem only gets your music in front of more people, and the combined influence of a few average listeners ain’t much. But if you can consistently move more and more people, momentum forms, and your music takes life. Being a rap star is the coolest job in the world. It’s not supposed to be easy. Momentum is the only guarantee in this game.
So get your ducks in a row.
Form your team. Find a mixing/mastering engineer who gives you tracks that both stand out, and blend in. Find a director, photographer and graphic designer who are as excited about bringing your music to the eyes as you are about bringing it to the ears.
Vet your music. Collaborate only with artists who want to win, not just talk about it. Test potential singles with your core fanbase – and us – to find the winners. Make music with serious artists, and spend your energy, time and money on the songs you have proof people like.
Play to your strengths. Are you a natural performer? A studio rat? An Instagram celebrity? Whatever you are, go all the way in. A rising tide lifts all boats eventually.
Prepare for the long haul. A budget, a list of releases, a calendar and a chat with us. Give us quality songs and videos consistently and we will get them to the right people, on every platform, in style. You can’t not grow. It’s math.