The Swift Approach to Selling and Marketing Music


Taylor Swift, love her or hate her, has made her mark in the music industry. Taylor and her team did not waste any time for media coverage, they simply made their own. Taylor understands the importance of social media; in fact she increased her social media presence buy joining Tumblr a month before the release of her album 1989. Swift didn’t rely on her team alone to make a cookie cutter approach on social media that most artists take. She made her social media campaign interesting and had fun with it. Swift released images and posts that were far from perfect, all while sharing album promo photos or lyrics from songs that had not been released. All these promotions helped Swift build upon her already loyal fan base, reminding fans that she is only human. Taylor seems to add a personal touch to all her projects.

If Swift’s marketing efforts weren’t working, her celebrity friends took to twitter to endorse the release of 1989. Friends like Lena Dunham, Ed Sheeran and Lorde just to drop a few names. Celebrity friends equal persuasive power amongst fans, the kind of power that sways the young consumers to buy. Taylor knows the importance of building relationships, whether it is with agencies or marketing professionals. Taylor even knows how to build relationships with her fans, she had several surprise listening parties where she baked cookies for her fans. Again another personal touch to her marketing campaign, this seems low budget, but an effective idea that speaks to her fans. The launching listening party was a great way to take loyal fans.  Swift’s endorsements didn’t stop with her celebrity friends, but continued with brand endorsements with Diet Coke and Target. Both companies released commercials and ads that featured Swift, along with bits and pieces of her new album. Target even went as far as having an exclusive floor space for Taylor’s album and merchandise.

Speaking of exclusives; Taylor’s team went to great lengths to make sure her album was exclusive to the consumers that paid for the album. When Taylor’s deluxe version of 1989 was leaked to the Internet, her team made sure it was taken down within an hour.

Taylor and her team even removed her entire music catalog from Spotify to remain exclusive. Taylor went on to say, “All I can say is that music is changing so quickly, and the landscape of the music industry itself is changing so quickly, that everything new, like Spotify, all feels to me a bit like a grand experiment and I’m not willing to contribute my life’s work to an experiment that I don’t feel fairly compensates the writers, producers, artists, and creators of this music.” Taylor said she tried Spotify for a while and it didn’t feel right, so she made the decision to get away from Spotify. I agree with Taylor, music does have value and should not be free. Taylor said it best when she said we are taking the word “music” out of music industry. In return, Spotify said, “We hope she’ll change her mind and join us in building a new music economy that works for everyone.” I hope Taylor never changes her mind; she understands the value of her music and will stand by her views.