The Compton, Cali native who has worked for Priority and Interscope Records lead the conversation by giving us a little background on his career. Music helped Moetown stay off the streets of Compton and connect with his mom. Initially wanting to be an attorney, Moetown admits “the love and knowledge of music came naturally”.
Moetown was responsible for putting 8ball and MJG back on the radio, when once banned, and became a national radio rep due to his successes. When their label fell through, Moetown became the group’s manager and next thing you know was negotiating with P.Diddy and initiating million dollar deals.
“I always focused on being me, keeping it 100” he says when describing how he goes about doing business. DO keep it 100!
Moetown defines branding as “the most important thing you can ever have”. “The way you present yourself is going to stick with you for long time” he says.
He gave us an example on how Kid N’ Play branded themselves as fun dancers and basically a comedy team of rap so if they wanted to make a serious track, no one would want to hear it because they would always be recognized as the “fun guys”.
So DON’T limit yourself by branding a certain way or put yourself in a box if you intend to be versatile.
Here are some more of the DOs and DON’Ts of branding and marketing according to Moetown Lee:
DO watch how you present yourself to the public.
How you dress, go into offices and the first time you meet someone, YOU ARE BRANDING YOURSELF.
When it comes to imagery, your logo is just as important as how you portray yourself. It’s a part of your overall image. One of the most recognized images is as simple as a man riding a horse – aka Polo Ralph Lauren.
DON’T overdo your imagery when it comes to branding, keep it simple and recognizable.
DO know your audience and demographic. “You can’t rap about the streets and try to sell it to church” says Moetown.
He gives an example of how Soulja Boy marketed himself perfectly by using YouTube to his advantage by adding a dance and name recognition to his videos. He recognized early on that adding those elements would attract a younger audience.
DO sign up for a business page instead of a personal page on social network to better understand the demographics you attract.
DO always be open to learn.
DO reach out to sponsors who are aligned with you brand.
Lastly R E L A T I O N S H I P S are key, according to Moetown.
The relationships you make, especially in this industry can take you a long way. Like Moetown said earlier, your brand will stick with you for a long time, THAT is how you as an artist will be remembered.
The next weekend workshop will be held on Mar. 4 on monetizing digital content with Philip Stein and Jason White.