Entertainment - Written by Naumi Haque on Tuesday, December 30, 2008 9:23 - 5 Comments
Multi-channel self-marketing at its best
Here’s an interesting story I read about over the weekend that 1) illustrates how Web 2.0 is changing the music industry for young people and 2) exemplifies just how powerful a multi-channel marketing approach can be – particularly for marketing one’s self. Country music fans may already have heard about Ryan Laird, the 21-year old aspiring musician from Fergus Ontario (now living in Nashville) that managed to catch the attention of chart-topping young phenomenon Taylor Swift.
Laird has a MySpace page, a Facebook fan page, and has posted several videos on You Tube, including male-version mash-ups of some of Swift’s songs. But, his real stroke of genius came this month when Laird dropped his life savings on a giant billboard in front of Swift’s publishing house which reads: “Hey Taylor – I LOVE your music. Will you produce my album?” The sign also includes a link to his MySpace. Says Laird; “I needed a unique way to reach out to her because she’s really busy.” I think it’s a great example of how an expensive traditional media placement can be used to ignite a spark and drive traffic to free online venues (not unlike the Paris Hilton/Carl’s Junior phenomenon).
The strategy appears to have worked. In an interview with E! Canada, Swift said that she would “definitely want to meet him,” and “definitely want to hear more of his stuff.” Notably, the MySpace link was critical to the billboard’s success. Says Swift; “I went on his MySpace and listened to one of his songs and absolutely fell in love with it. […] It would be really cool to maybe work with him.” Even if Swift doesn’t elect to produce his album, the viral buzz around Ryan Laird is growing. In an interview with CMT, Laird talks about how about 16,000 of Swift’s MySpace fans have become his fans as well.
You can watch the entire story behind the billboard proposition in a video posted to Facebook.
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