If you start to see your brand as a giant cake and not just a slice; you will begin to understand how to feed people your content. Every slice, feeds a different part of the audience.
You can follow my catalogue way back, but the statistics will show that ‘Between the Lines’ has been my biggest ‘hit’ to date (over 7 million streams). When I released the album last year, I thought yes, I have created a body of work. But, people gravitated to one part in particular — the 3:45 minute classic love story of, boy meets girl, girl already has boy and then they’re entwined in a seductive, yet potentially catastrophic “oh fuck, what are we doing?” dance. Relatable? Yes. Did I see it coming? No. But I watched the numbers and they didn’t lie (side note — I don’t buy my numbers). Next move? Make a video. Win awards for said video and the knock-on effect; People are now listening to other Jase Harley work. The grand total so far is 15 million streams.
What worked? I already had my BMI, ASCAP, Tune Core and Sound Exchange set up. So, the new love I’ve been receiving, has now translated to new love, for old material. I’m also not banking on one song. I am embarking upon the release of my next album. When did I start working on that? Before I released the last one.
We’ve all heard the term ‘creating content’. That’s the slices. Creating micro content? That’s when someone says, I can’t eat a whole slice, just give me a slither. Understand that people’s intake varies. Get ‘behind the scenes’ for YouTube, take one line from a whole verse and create a meme for Instagram — use micro content to drive traffic to the bakery that creates the cake, that then cuts up the slices. I’m not making a living off my art because one song hit home for people, I’m making a living because that one brick is one of many, in an entire empire of work.
You know what really, really works though? I own the bakery… I produce the beats, I rap my rhymes and I master my mixes. This means my revenue ends up belonging 90% to me. There is the percentage awarded to features but if I didn’t learn how to weigh my own ingredients, use my own oven and ice my own cake — I’d owe other people more than I would make myself.
Do your own baking (and banking), make sacrifices — eventually you’ll have your cake and be able to eat it too.