Justin Bieber’s Top 5 Marketing Lessons You Can’t Ignore

Image of Justin Bieber

You don’t have to warm up to high-pitched boy personalities on stage.

You won’t have to listen to Justin Bieber’s Billboard Hot 100 chart-topping hits from the past year for sage marketing advice.

But what you should do is take a page (or five) out of the book of this 16-year old’s rise to fame.  Whether you like, envy, or can’t stand him you must appreciate Bieber’s brand awareness and sprawling web presence.

He was just your average boy; living with his single mother, going to school, and honing his craft playing tribute music wherever people would listen.  At 12-years old he was doing what he loved; publicly singing and strumming his guitar in his local Stratford, Ontario town.

How did he become a household name?  Who in the world is even listening to his music?  What Bieber marketing strategies can you apply to your own business, starting today, to help you create your own fame?

Here are the facts.

5 Marketing Lessons From Justin Bieber

1. Confidence

He had the good fortune of starting his career young.  Not simply because he will have gobs of cash for years-and-years yet, but because of lack of negative external forces.

As kids we have dreams and share our dreams with everyone around us.  Everyone encourages us to reach for the stars and let nothing stand in our way.  Before long, what happens?

People start knocking you down a few pegs.  They become jealous if you get the promotion at work or skeptical of your intentions to start an online business or website.

Bieber shamelessly owned it.  He shared his talent openly and confidently while he was young (he still is).

Your Takeaway:  Own it.  Rekindle the exhilaration of dreaming about what you wanted to be when you grew up.  Embrace what you want to do this year and go at it with fervor.  Your audience awaits.

2. Video Promotion

Justin Bieber joins the ranks of Lady Gaga and entertainer Jon Lajoie (NSFW) as a viral internet video sensation.  He’s eclipsed Lady Gaga for the most-viewed YouTube video which is a massive feat in itself.

If you aren’t leveraging multimedia in your marketing program you’re sunk.  Video is a highly-shareable and search-engine friendly media component that needs to be a part of your marketing arsenal.  Your audience may prefer to learn and engage in various ways; so if you’re mainly text-based try adding video to resonate with more fans.

With a simple camera, some sly editing, and pithy videos you can quickly gather channel subscribers and have them share your video with friends, fans, and family.

3. Market Polarization

Polarization is eloquently defined by Guy Kawasaki:

“Don’t be afraid to polarize people.  Most companies want to create the holy grail of products that appeals to every demographic, social-economic background, and geographic location. To attempt to do so guarantees mediocrity.”

Justin Bieber’s music may never make it onto your iPod or into your CD library.  That’s OK for Justin; he will make a very comfortable living with support from the raving fans he has lined up directly behind you.

Your message, widget, website, or marketing shouldn’t be cast as a vast net for every passerby.  Stop playing in the gray area and serve a specific, loyal and well-defined customer.

4. Persistence

Now to be fair, Bieber hit his stride in a few short years.  For many of us it’s going to take longer to get the word out. Nevertheless, he persevered in his quest to becoming a world-recognized musician.

Make progress toward your own business goals every day.  As Seth Godin would say, “just ship,” and adjust on-the-fly.  What if an idea flops?  Get up, wipe off, adjust your course and learn from your mistakes.  Just keep pressing forward because you never know when you’ll reach your tipping point.

5. Networking

You can’t work in a vacuum.  You have to network with others, branch out, ask or accept some help and advice from others in your industry. That’s just the way human business works.

Did 16-year young Justin Bieber do this?  You bet.  Hip-hop heavyweights Ludacris and Kanye West have been collaborating with Bieber to help promote the young star.  Why?  It’s smart business because we all share an audience.

You need to discard the, “my customer/your customer,” mentality and realize we all have a shared audience.  Just because you shop at Target does that mean you won’t buy from Kohl’s, Wal-Mart, or Sears?  Heck no.

The same holds true for businesses in similar service or product verticals; brands can quickly gain traction by joint-venturing with complementary brands.

Create Your Fame Today

You don’t have to embrace the work of Justin Bieber or any other celebrity but it’s helpful to model your success after what works. Use your conviction in your idea or business concept and start leveraging the social web and help of others to spread your message.

Isn’t it time you set yourself squarely in the spotlight of your industry?

Photo: unreality

4 Responses to Justin Bieber’s Top 5 Marketing Lessons You Can’t Ignore
  1. Deborah Shipley
    January 11, 2011 | 9:14 am

    I like your reference to not needing to please everyone with what you put out there. As a formal people pleaser-this one has been a hard lesson to come by, but such a valuable one.

    We can learn a lot from Justin Bieber. My 8-year old son and I can’t wait to see his movie coming out.

    Bieber Fever…

    Thanks for the valuable blog post.

    • Jon
      January 11, 2011 | 6:48 pm


      Thanks for stopping in. It’s a tough lesson; it may be our egos wanting everyone to accept us and love what we’re offering. Fact is, we have to understand we can’t be everyone’s flavor.

      Enjoy the movie :)

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by ePromos, Jonathan Alford. Jonathan Alford said: I'm not a music fan of his but here are marketing tips via Justin Bieber: http://bit.ly/glpZzv [...]

  3. [...] Take a popular news story or person and use it to create a post in your niche. (For example: Justin Bieber’s Top 5 Marketing Lessons that You Can’t Ignore.) [...]

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