Ginormous News: A Secret Blog Entry about Beyoncé

December 29, 2013

OMG!  I’ve been thinking about writing this blog post since I heard about Beyoncé’s no-longer-secret album two weeks ago.

Yet I’ve kept it secret, even from my wife, from Beyoncé and from Beyoncé’s producer, because apparently no one tells him anything anyway.

I’ve kept this blog post a secret for the same reason that Beyoncé kept her album a secret.  If I told anyone about it when I first thought about writing it, it wouldn’t be news today.  But since I’m telling you now, it’s big news.  After all, we’re talking about Beyoncé.

Maybe, like Beyoncé, I can get 1.2 million tweets within 12 hours of posting this.  Maybe I can break Bey’s new record of more than 5,300 tweets per minute.  On the other hand, I don’t have a social media and public relations team working non-stop to promote my blog.  But maybe I can get a few comments!

The Media Hype

It turns out that the secret album wasn’t so secret.  As soon as it was released, it received wall-to-wall media coverage, with virtually every media outlet focusing on the album being a secret.  Some secret.

News outlets gushed over Bey’s secret album as though she had just given birth to unicorn quintuplets without anyone knowing she was pregnant.

As Yahoo! Music put it, it was “not massive” news.  It was “Ginormous,” which we assume means it was both gigantic and enormous, and had nothing to do with an alcoholic beverage used to make martinis.

Hearing a national news program announce that the album was “available on iTunes for $15.99,” I wondered if I had just heard a paid ad, although if the spot was an advertorial, the network failed to acknowledge it.

Even The Wall Street Journal joined the Beyoncé love in.  Under the headline, “An Album Release without the Hype,” The Journal noted that Beyoncé had done no advance marketing of her album.  The article adds, though, that she did make a 15-second video available to her 8 million Instagram followers about the time that the album became available on iTunes.

Yeah, no hype there.  It would, of course, have been more accurate for the headline writer to note that there was no hype until the album became available.

Read, “Beyoncé Reveals the Secrets Behind Her Surprise Album,” and you’ll learn that Beyoncé wore ear buds when she shot the video for her song, “XO,” to “keep the public in the dark.”  OMG!!  Now that’s news!

And … how shocking … celebrity blogger Perez Hilton revealed that her producer didn’t know about the album until 90 minutes before it was released.  You may have wondered what producers do.  Now you know.  At least in this case, absolutely nothing.

The “I’ve Got a Secret” approach proved successful, as the self-titled album quickly hit number one on iTunes, which is the only place where it is currently available.  Nearly 900,000 were purchased in just three days.  According to Forbes, about $10 from every sale goes to Beyoncé.

But, as other media have noted, there are still “burning questions” to be answered, for example:

  • Media that wrote about Beyoncé said they were answering burning questions.  What makes a question “burning?”  How does a question become ignited?
  • Who is Beyoncé’s public relations agency?  The press release announcing the album credits Parkwood Entertainment, which was founded by Beyoncé.  Who knows who actually did the work behind the campaign, but kudos to whoever did.
  • What role did Beyoncé play in developing the strategy used to promote this album?
  • How secret was this album, really?  Secret album releases by artists that have achieved Super Bowl status don’t just happen.  A grand production that includes 17 videos, 14 new songs and a slick marketing strategy takes many people and a heck of a lot of work.  And fans have known for months that Bey was recording new material.
  • So why, at a time when fewer stories are being covered did so many media cover this non-story?

Like Lady Gaga and Madonna, Beyoncé has marketing smarts – or hired people that have marketing smarts – but she’s learned from their mistakes.  She apparently realizes that once a female star takes the outrageous route, she must continuously one-up herself, ala Lady Gaga.

No “truth or dare” for Beyoncé.  No wardrobe malfunctions.  No meat suit theatrics for the sake of tweets.  She’ll produce sexy videos, yes, but Beyoncé also shows her maternal side by featuring her new daughter, Blue, in a video.

So Beyoncé knows how to manage her brand.  And she understands the power of social media and public relations.

Comments

Go girl!!

Bey is obviously one smart woman...

Go girl!!

No doubt about that.  

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