Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Always Stay Gracious, Best Revenge Is Your Paper | Beyonce | Formation Review

As a business owner we can learn a lot from the new Beyonce Formation Single/Video Release that launched over the weekend.  I am a business owner and also coupled with my 22 years of corporate management experience with 9 of those years being Multi-Unit Management I look at how celebrities market their brands to gain insight for my business.

On Saturday I received a message that "Beyonce is Back" from a friend and immediately got excited!  I was not prepared for what I watched in the Formation video.  I am a very visual person so the video really sold me on the song, the video told a story that is very taboo to talk about especially if you are in the industry.  However it was almost like Beyonce had been silently taking notes and when it was time, she would make her statement on how she felt about several issues that she's been the topic of conversation in the media & also very key events that has happened in the United States.  Honey, she has definitely made a statement!

So here are my thoughts on how business owners can learn from the business of Beyonce....
After coming down off of my Bey High on Saturday night, I began to think about if every business owner was as strategic as Bey' our businesses & our "Tribe/Fans" would be off the charts.  I posted this on my Facebook on Sunday morning...this was just a snippet of my thoughts so I decided to share them on my blog.  

So let's get into it shall we...

  • Tip #1:  She Moves In Silence.   Its no secret after the last surprise album launch on December 13, 2013 that Beyonce was ready to take her business into her own hands.  I remember this launch for special reasons because I had just attended the Beyonce World Tour Concert with my sisters at the Yum Center in Louisville, Kentucky on December 12, 2013 and before we could get back to my sisters apartment the album launched!  Did she give the audience at the Yum Center a hint of the launch?  Nope!  It was a complete surprise.   She took the same approach with this Formation Launch.  We have not really seen alot of Beyonce on the blogs or social media & then out of the blue (no pun intended) she drops Formation.  A single that speaks volumes to so many social issues happening in America right now.  In case you were wondering she launched her surprise album in 2013 selling 828,773 copies in 3 days without any major marketing...only a 15 second Instagram video!  Do you move in silence with your business or do you have to keep everyone updated or grand announcements of your next move?  
  • Tip #2:  She is not afraid to course correct or start over with her leadership team.  At times as leaders we settle and deal with team management issues far too long & that will sometimes effect our overall business.  Its important to snip the low hanging fruit from our business & if that means starting over, well that's what you have to do.  Build a team that you can trust! 
  • Tip #3:  Beyonce launches her "Products" without notice or need of approval of others.  So often as Creatives we have an entire "Launch Strategy" when we update our brands or websites.  We have to create a buzz around the new launch but my question is why?  It's your brand, its your business and you ultimately make a living off of the creativity that you have been blessed with & not your peers.  When YOU lead your business or brand why would you need the approval of your peers?  Its your company & brand, take it and run with it.  Thinking about Beyonce she has a mystique around her that we can't quite put our finger on but we love her.  She is authentic and she commands attention but has a strong presence on her own terms.  What I personally love about Beyonce's brand is the element of surprise & she is a risk taker.  If you have a great idea, don't be afraid to take it and run with it.  You don't have to call everyone in your circle to get their approval, just trust your inner still small voice and run with it!  

  • Tip #4:  Beyonce is strategic & knows how to execute perfect timing.  Now this could be said for her video formations and dance routines but NO...lets talk about the strategy of Formation and its message.  (1.)  This video was launched in February which is Black History Month.  The issues that plague the Black Community (Police Brutality, Hurricane Katrina, Black Lives Matter Movement)  are shown very vividly in this video.   She ultimately co-signs and tells you her thoughts through the song. 
  • Its my belief that due to the social nature of the video (1.)  Beyonce & Jay Z (via Tidal donate $1.5 M to Black Lives Matter Campaign) were very conscious of that and donated prior to the video release  (2.)  The video has a New Orleans flavor...it was launched during Mardi Gras.  (3.) Oh & that little performance at the Super Bowl....it was all business but also a social conscious strategy.  I say social conscious because Beyonce paid homage to 2 major icons in the African American Community.  {1.}  Michael Jackson with her Superbowl outfit/jacket & {2.}  Her dancers at the Superbowl performance wardrobe style was to pay homage to The 50th Anniversary of The Black Panther Party Movement.  Again its also very strategic.  *Side note*  I recently visited the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee and it was an experience.  I think the older that I get the more I appreciate the history displayed inside this National Site.  This visit the Black Panther Party Exhibit really moved me and I paid more attention to the videos, colors and message that was in that exhibit room.  I am glad I was able to visit just at the cusp of Black History Month & their 50th Anniversary.  It was an awesome experience.  
image credit:  Us Magazine
Image Credit:  @DreamDefenders

To seal the deal....after the Super Bowl Buzz, Beyonce Launches a Formation Tour.  Now in my mind, you can't have a Formation Tour without a Formation Album even though her music catalog is very thick with the hits.  I personally think an album will drop just right before the concert ticket prices launch because the dates have already been leaked.  

As you can see I am a Beyonce "Business Fan" but I also love her music after seeing her live.  She is the ultimate performer and business Mogul in her own right.  

How can you take tips from Beyonce to improve your creative business?  Please comment below!