An artist is a brand

Whether you like it or not, the moment you are serious about your craft, especially as an artist, you become a brand because your name becomes associated with the great works you produce. The moment you realise this, you need to decide what your brand stands for, you need to work on how you position yourself as a brand in the market, what makes you different? Any marketing exposure builds your brand, all the online interviews, radio interviews, TV appearances, performances on live shows, conferences and even private functions like weddings and corporate events help to build your brand, hence this website, all part of being more professional in my craft and more proficient.

As an artist, it is easy to get lost in your brand, to focus more on the brand than on the craft, so this calls for a balance to be struck and one of the ways one can go about striking this balance is hiring a manager or doing it yourself. It calls for each artist to look at their needs and cater to them accordingly. There are other really brilliant artists that I have come across that I felt would absolutely kill a certain sector if they positioned themselves for it and ‘gouged’ up their brand accordingly so to speak, and I am talking about guys who have been doing this longer than I have yet remain known only in the poetry ‘industry’, it is really sad. I am hoping this blog entry will aid in waking some people up to upping their marketing game.

Can one be a full time poet in SA and make a living off it? This is a question I have been asked by a lot of magazines and the answer is  yes, it may not be a comfortable life though. To survive as a full time poet, you have to either have a lot of paying gigs constantly or have a lot of shows which you create and charge people to watch or better yet, both. So this means, that you work harder than other poets. This also boils down to your standard of living, I do not think you will be driving a sports car with a poet’s salary just yet, but it will eventually get there if you put in the work and the marketing every time.

In conclusion, every artist is a brand and every performance/product is a brand experience, how the artist packages and presents themselves determines how they are positioned in the market, so find your niche and do best!  God bless you guys.


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  2. This is so true.People fail to understand the importance of branding yourself correctly. How you perceive your self and how you portray yourself is everything.

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