4 PR lessons from the world’s top-paid artists

Forbes recently released a list of the highest-earning musicians around the globe, and four rappers landed its top spots. Here’s what you can learn from each. 


Forbes recently released the list of America’s highest-paid artists, and the top four are rappers.

Drake, Dr. Dre, Diddy (or Puff Daddy) and Jay-Z dominate the list for being “cash kings” and leaders in their field.

Whether or not you listen to rap, each artist’s career provides a lesson all public relations professionals can learn.

Here are four ways we can emulate these hip-hop moguls (music videos not included):

1. Build A Brand.

As a public relations professional, it’s not only important to build your client’s brand; you have to build yours, too.

Dr. Dre, who also holds the No. 4 spot, has done a great job of capitalizing on his brand and secured a major opportunity last year. Dre made $620 million last year, according to Forbe,s after his $3 billion deal with Apple.

What Dre has created and kept building a brand in the music industry, from his beginning with N.W.A. until now. From producing rap’s greatest hits, to signing artists, creating a music label and branching his expertise into the finest of headphones, Dre gets it.

Think about your niche market, whether it’s natural food, entertainment or tech, and how you can build your own personal brand within your industry.

2. Be Consistent.

Being consistent is one of the most important lessons any PR professional will learn.

From pitching, to communicating with clients and following up with reporters, consistency is the key to success. Drake, who comes in at No. 3 on Forbes’ list, has been consistent from the minute he stepped on the rap scene.

Drake played 50 dates on his last tour, grossing an average of nearly $1 million a night, landing deals with Sprite and Nike. Consistently delivering his sing-song lyrics lead him to success.

After establishing your brand, remember that people (and clients) are watching the moves you make. Remaining true to best standards and practices in the industry will get you noticed.

3. Develop Partnerships.

Developing key partnerships, whether for yourself or your clients, means you get more bang for your buck.

Jay-Z showed the results of a successful partnership during his “On The Run” Tour with Beyoncé.

Though we all can’t team up with our favorite artist and pitch like we’ve never pitched before, we can identify peers in our industry with whom we may want to work in the future.

Don’t forget to think about partnerships when it comes to your clients. There are some key events, like Breast Cancer Awareness Month, when you can introduce clients for potential partnerships that can result in overall good.

Jay-Z’s partnership landed him the No. 2 spot on Forbes’ list, and got him beautiful baby Blue.

4. Get Creative.

One of the biggest factors that sets a PR professional apart from his or her peers is a sense of creativity.

Diddy, who reigns supreme as No. 1 on Forbes’ list, has been keeping his creative juices flowing for the past two decades. From record labels to reality shows, and from clothing lines to colognes, Diddy “can’t stop, won’t stop” with his knack for creativity.

Don’t stop, either. Brainstorm new ideas for clients, think outside the box and color outside the lines, because they will remember you for it. Some of the best PR campaigns were born from the most creative minds.

Mercy Chikowore is a PR manager at Belle Communications. A version of this story originally appeared on the firm’s blog.

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