On November 22nd Kanye West released his album My Beautiful Dark and Twisted Fantasy. Since its release it has been receiving an unbelievable amount of attention and rumors in the hip-hop world have been circulating claiming this album may be considered a “hip hop classic”. I find this interesting because it seems as if there are always two crucial components for a CD to release and be considered a “classic”. The obvious aspect is that the artists’ work must be ground breaking but interestingly enough the second component is what we call “hype”. The question then becomes, how does an artist create buzz in today’s fast paced media driven culture? To answer this question I turned to a video I recently watched on a website called TED.com.
In this video a man named Alex Ohanian, one of the founders of Reddit, discuses how to make a “Splash in Social Media”. He tells a story about how a non-profit organization called Greenpeace; in an effort to end whaling, put together a campaign to track hump back whales. Interestingly enough they decided to name each whale and start an online poll to see which whale should be focused on. Therefore, each whale was given a very serious name, most of which were in a foreign language signifying tranquility and other oceanic qualities. Then for some odd reason, out of nowhere, they named one whale “Mister Splashy Pants”. Whoever thought of this name and why is unknown, but what we do known is that this poll was turned into a social media party, almost entirely due to the name Splashy Pants. Of course, Mister Splashy Pants won the contest, gaining almost 80% of the votes.
Now before your minds start wondering, NO, Kanye West did not make another public outburst, this time demoralizing our beloved Mister Splashy Pants. Although I’m almost positive Kanye’s best friend Taylor Swift will write a love song about Mister Splashy Pants’ rescue and who knows maybe she will win another Grammy for it. Anyways, the correlation between Mister Splash Pants and Kanye West ultimately lies in the splash. The question in the entertainment industry today seems to always be how can we make a splash in social media in order to crate hype and ultimate success? So how did Kanye go from being Mr. A-hole, who publicly deflates little girl’s egos on national television, back to Superstar producer/rapper?
Two words: G.O.O.D. Fridays.
No, Easter is not approaching and no this has absolutely nothing to do with Christianity. G.O.O.D. Fridays is a free music program made by Kanye West, which consists of releasing a song every Friday. (his label is called G.O.O.D. Music and each Friday a song is released, get it?) For 13 weeks straight Kanye released singles to create a social media frenzy. Fans absolutely loved this idea and it did not take long before hip-hop websites started buzzing about how great the music was. By the third G.O.O.D. Friday Kanye had fans literally waiting online for him to post his most recent release. When it finally became time for My Beautiful Dark and Twisted Fantasy to drop, G.O.O.D. Fridays had successfully transformed it into a highly anticipated album and a huge social media splash.
Another splash Kanye created can also be found below. Kanye decided to draw his own album art for My Beautiful Dark and Twisted Fantasy and shockingly enough the cover depicted two individuals having sexual intercourse while smiling (with fangs). When Kanye sent the album artwork in for approval, clearly it was denied but that is just where the story starts. Social media sites went absolutely insane over this picture while fans sat in disbelief as to why Kanye would believe this was appropriate. Whether Kanye meant to create such hype over this issue or not the bottom line is that Kanye splashed around quite a bit before releasing this album, a true marketing genius in my opinion.
Needless to say, the album is truly remarkable and I highly advise anyone who is sleeping on Kanye West to go to iTunes and make a purchase. (Link conveniently located below). The album lived up to and surpassed the hype that was built around it and for the last two weeks has been the only CD in my car. Stay fresh with Kanye West my friends. Dolph.
11:34 AM |