There are lots of valuable lessons we can learn from this Canadian pop star. In June 2012, the 18 year-old singer featured on the front cover of Forbes Magazine under the headline: Justin Bieber, Venture Capitalist. Bieber is an international superstar, with a work ethic to match. Journalist and music industry insiders attest to the fact that behind the teenage swagger is a shrewd business mind, which is innovative and determined to lead by example.
Bieber has performed over 170 shows around the world and has sold more than 15 million albums, grossing in excess of $150m. His biopic, Never Say Never, earned $100m at the box office last year. His perfume, Someday, made $60m in retail sales during its first six months.
Since the age of 15, Bieber has been building a business empire beyond his personal brand, investing his significant wealth into, among other things, start-up technology companies. The decisions he and his advisors have taken have maximized his medium-term earning potential while ensuring his future credibility and legacy. And therein lay five key lessons which every business owner or entrepreneur can learn from:
#1 KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
When marketing a brand it is essential that you know your target audience. No business can afford to target everyone, overall startups and SMES. Therefore, it is better to focus your efforts on your niche market. Establish who are your biggest fans and keep them front of mind when taking marketing decisions
Bieber, for example, concentrates his full commercial attention on the lucrative teen female market. His first fragrance, Someday, was the best-selling perfume of 2011, and his One Less Lonely Girl brand of nail polishes sold over a million bottles in two months.
#2 ENGAGE WITH YOUR AUDIENCE
More impressive than Bieber’s financial clout is his vast social media reach. He has over 21 million Twitter followers and 43 million Facebook fans, while his debut single ‘Baby’ is the most watched video in YouTube history with over 740 million views.
In 2010, Twitter estimated that 3% of the company’s entire infrastructure was dedicated to Bieber-related tweets.
Bieber understands that conversation and content is critical and has mastered the synergy between casual dialogue and promotion. Unlike many businesses on social media, he seeks to create super-fans: brand advocates who create a two-way conversation. Every time Bieber replies to a follower, he increases his influence, reaching not just his direct audience but expanding to incorporate his fans’ social circles too.
#3 BUILD THE RIGHT TEAM
I expect that each and every person reading this article is saying “that’s all good and well but Justin Bieber is only successful because he’s paid good people to manage his interests”… and you’d be partially right. But the same applies for most of us. Very few business owners or successful entrepreneurs make it on their own.
It is key to understand our strengths and weaknesses and build teams around us that compensate for or complement our own skill set.