Tuesday, March 21, 2006

3 Lessons Every Professional Can Learn From Kid Rock

Today I watched an interesting “Behind the Music” on VH-1 about Kid Rock.  I actually think that all independent professionals and marketers should watch this show.  You'd be amazed at some of the marketing techniques musicians (and the recordcompanies behind them) use to promote their music.  

Anyway, I learned more about Kid Rock than I ever cared to know, but I learned A LOT of lessons from it.  I won't go through all of them, but I can tell you one thing--Kid Rock is one heck of a businessman.  

So, here are 3 important marketing lessons I learned from Kid Rock:

#1  You’ve got to say it if you want to make it

If you happen to own a copy of Kid Rock’s “Devil Without a Cause,” pop it in now and go to the title track.  Kid Rocks exclaims," I'm goin' platinum".  When he wrote this, he was nowhere near platinum.  He was lucky to have gotten signed to a record contract, let alone go platinum.  

But if you want to make it, you’ve got to say it and believe it.  I don’t mean “fake it till you make it.”  I mean put yourself on the line and BELIEVE it.  

#2  Be a shameless promoter

If you’re afraid of tooting your own horn, then you better consider another line of work.  I’m all for being humble, but if you can’t rave about how good you are at what you do and give compelling reasons why people need you, then why even be in business?  

When Kid Rock was negotiating with record companies, he noted that he wanted “Elvis money and Matchbox 20 money.”  That means he felt like he was on par with the King and the top alternative group of the time.  

That took B-A-L-L-S given the fact that he was a nobody outside Detroit at the time.  But, hey, he wasn’t afraid to promote himself as the next big thing.

And guess what?

They treated him like the was the next big thing.

#3  Never give up

This is the #1 lesson I learned from Kid Rock.  This guy’s career should have been over a long time ago.  Signed and then dropped from his record label at 18.  Told that he couldn’t make it as a white rapper.  

So, what did he do?  He went out, learned to play the guitar, and evolved as a musician.  

He worked harder to make it happen.  He went out and drove 10 hours to mix tracks.  Worked for peanuts at a studio to record his music.  And the list goes on.
Too many times, I see independent professionals give up at the first sign of hardship.  Or they quit when the going gets tough.  All I can say is that the music industry is probably the hardest industry to break into...and when you look at stories like Kid Rock's one thing stands out…

…it’s not always the best that make it, but the ones that persevere through adversity.  

To Your Continued success,

Carlon Haas


Colleen S. said...

Very cool post Carlon. You brought up some good points with a great analogy. Especially the closing (it's not always the best that make it, but the ones that persevere through adversity) - I got a giggle out of that part, but it was still a powerful statement. Thanks for sharing,

Faydra said...

Carlon, I must admit, you gave credit where credit is due. This guy is tough as nails! He has been through a lot with his career, but also, pay attention to the things he sings and raps about. That is where I found a respect for him. He is just plain REAL and for anyone who has ever been remotely to the darkest pits of hell this life has to offer--sometimes it is nice to be reminded that we are not in it alone.

This man has brought me strength and gives me energy and makes me think about success when I feel like a failure. It may sound insane to someone like you, but, I think he is a genius. Also, he is a great poet-even if it includes profanity! haha

I have felt that he was my friend when nobody else was. I was a physically and mentally abused wife 4 years ago. Now I am a law student with a 3.87 GPA. My inspiration have been my children, my mom, and the ability to make a difference. The sweet KID helps me out too! I think he's great, and maybe you should dig a little deeper into the world of ROCK.

Listen with your heart, and see if you get a charge out of it! He's a good man, just misunderstood, I think. He taught me to be "COCKY" and helps me to be able to back it up.

Steve Harper said...

I guess I have hope!