Today I have the pleasure of having LexiB guest post on one of the most influential business men turned Marketing Gurus of our time… Sean ‘Diddy” Combs. You can find LexiB regularly on her lifestyle blog and be sure to subscribe to her newsletter, so you can start living a smarter and sexy lifestyle. LexiB originally posted this article on her site and I loved it so much I asked her to re post it here!
It has been an extensively long journey for Diddy and his newest super duo, Dirty Money as they make their seemingly countless publicity spots for the Last Train To Paris, the latest musical venture from the Bad Boy CEO.
Obviously the head engineer, Diddy has switched the gears for mainstream media to follow his every move as he works diligently to secure another multiplatinum album to his ever-expanding resume.
Born Sean Combs, it has been no secret that his business tactics have been questioned by his former record label roster as well as those who are embedded in the entertainment industry and critics who observe from the outside the circle. Yet, with all the negative criticism, it has not slowed down the momentum of one of the highest banking moguls of today. According to the Forbes Hip Hop Kings list from this year, Diddy placed second, banking $30m in the past year.
But, what is it about Diddy that has kept him afloat for nearly two decades while his industry oppositions who vowed to take him down are nowhere near the publicly viewed radar?
What marketing strategies and tactics are the hip hop titan using that would work effectively for small businesses if executed properly?
Diddy IS his brand
From what he wears, to the cars he drive and the much talked about parties he host, Diddy has created a lifestyle brand. In fact, he, himself is the lifestyle brand. With an empire consisting of apparel (Sean John), an alcoholic beverage, cologne, a production company and of course, music, his brand is vastly growing into one of the most popular lifestyle brands today. Because he lives, breathes, drinks and bathes in what he is marketing, his message is consistent and the golden touch to his ventures.
Personal branding is often perceived as some grandiose project that takes Diddy type of money to pull off when in fact, it is extension of you. Be authentic. Don’t be afraid to take a plunge out of the box. Become engulfed in your target market: know who they are, where they are and how to reach them.
Diddy has no qualms about promoting himself
Diddy proudly utilizes grassroot means of marketing to securing his spot as of the leading entertainment moguls. This week with the release of his latest album,Last Train to Paris, he has brought to our attention that he is a strong advocate for the most effective means of promotion, word of mouth. With just one simple “tweet”, he asked for his 3+ million followers to change their avatars to the Diddy-Dirty Money album cover and to include #LTTP (the official hashtag for Last Train to Paris) in their status updates. And the result?! Many of them obliged, providing him with an overwhelming amount of support and his own virtual street team.
But, even Diddy knows that in order to be successful, you have to be able to promote yourself and to not be shy in doing so. Visibility is imperative. If you’re not confident in what you have to offer, then who will?
Diddy remains on the cutting edge of technology
One of the few celebrities who have embraced the rapid changes of technology and what social media has to offer, it has only strengthen his brand even more. On the day of his album release, he utilized the unmatched powers of social media to have a worldwide listening party, an event normally only reserved for a select few of the who’s who. Broadcasted through the popular live video-based website, Ustream, countless onlookers tuned in to experience everything but the Ciroc that was being poured. With the assistance of a knowledgeable tech and camera team, the Bad Boy CEO took the Ustream capabilities to a level that many that I have personally witnessed have not done before.
Social media, while seemingly daunting to novices, is extremely useful when it comes to communicating with your target market. It becomes somewhat of a proposal to your audience because it greatly involves engagement and being able to share your knowledge and expertise with the rest of the world that an ad in publication can’t reach and much more cost effective.
Diddy believes in reinvention
In the duration of his career, Sean Combs has gone from Puff Daddy, P Diddy to now simply Diddy. With each name change, we were introduced to a new facet of his entrepreneurial abilities. Even with a long list of titles such music label CEO, producer, artist, actor and designer, he still manages to fit it all into one box and importantly, his carefully calculated transitions to each role remain consistent with his brand and therefore, works in his favor.
To remain stagnant in your chosen field on a long-term basis will stall your progress in business. While remaining faithful to your initial efforts, try out new ventures that will further incept your brand into your target market. Incorporate other means to bring attention to what you are doing whether it’s becoming known as a speaker, an author or launching another product or service to complement the other you have. Whatever you choose to add to your portfolio, make a commitment to remain active. The moment you stop, the brand suffers.
Diddy aligns himself with other notable brands
Diddy possesses the business acumen to know that in order to build his lifestyle empire, it requires alliances with other well-known and established brands. His alignment with complementary corporations such as Diageo (the maker of Ciroc) catapulted his name and image into new markets. Because of an effective ongoing marketing campaign, the names Diddy and Ciroc are inseparable and are incredibly lucrative for both.
Diving into an entrepreneurial path is lonely one and can become crowded with competition who wants to get to the proposed destination first. Anytime you can discover an opportunity to partner with reputable business outside of your field where you both can benefit from the desired results, jump on it. It would sever costs and introduce your brand to a new group of potential consumers.
Whether you agree with the way he does business or you scold everything he touches, Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs is a “can’t stop, won’t stop” force.
His marketing tactics which have adjusted within the last few years to include the implementation of social media have proven time and time again that as word of mouth is the most effective method of promotion.
If Diddy has no problem taking to his BlackBerry to spread the word about his latest projects, then why should you hesitate in doing so with your own business?