This Was Me Until May 2010 Before people on the web called me iPullRank I was known as iCON the Mic King
I Released Some Records I’ve put out critically acclaimed CDs, vinyl and digital records since 2002. Sold ~15k 2002 2010
I Won Some Emcee Battles I competed and won a lot. Even placed 2 nd at Seattle’s Brainstorm2 in 2003.
I Played Some Concerts I’ve played hundreds of shows in North America, Australia and Europe since 2003
Modeling & Sponsorship I’ve modeled and been in commercials for music equipment and small clothing brands I’m great at rapping but ironing…not so much
Fantastic! But what does that have to do with Inbound Marketing? Everything.
I Was A 1-Man Startup There are very strong parallels between building a rap career and building a brand online News/Media/PR Forums Social Networks Video Show Bookings Product Email Podcasts Blogs Word Of Mouth
I Failed A Lot Unlike the picture there was no crystal ball so I made a lot of mistakes Failed Tours Failed Album Releases Failed Marketing Campaigns Failed Relationships Bad Credit
… but I Got Better Everytime I learned from those mistakes and became more proactive with every iteration
5 Principles to Better Inbound Marketing that Being a Rapper Taught Me
Agility and Hustle is Everything Take risks other people won’t in order achieve your goals; always be ready to improvise. Early in my career no one would pay for my travel so I toured on a counterfeit Greyhound bus pass for 10 months to get the ball rolling My job wouldn’t send me to MozCon so I paid for it myself.
Lead by Example Don’t try to fit in; be a standout. Find the style or tactic that sets you apart. My blindfold freestyle trick make my live shows unique and unforgettable My co-relevant extended metaphors makes my content unique and digestible
Know Your Audience Understanding your audience is the most powerful thing you can do for any campaign Whenever I got to a new city I hung out with the people and read up on it in Wikipedia to inform my freestyles and better connect with my audience Creating Mental Models or Personas of Your Audience is No Different.
Involve People Make people feel included instead of in the crowd; minimize barriers
3 Principles to Better SEO that Being a Rapper Taught Me
Fulfill Peoples Needs Create Experiences That Show You Value People’s Time When I put out CD-Rs it was the equivalent of a bad UX When I put out high quality retail ready albums it was the equivalent of good UX
Execute, Execute, Execute Following through on a decent idea is better than not following through on a weak idea
People Hate Form Letters Read: http://www.seomoz.org/blog/throw-away-your-form-letters-or-5-principles-to-better-outreach-link-building Form letters did not work well for me when I booked shows and that’s why they are unacceptable to me for outreach link building. Persona-based Social Outreach > Form Letter Outreach
The #1 Thing I Learned From Being An Indie Rapper
Success is Relative I was never satisfied by any achievements in my rap career. Define success in terms of you Don’t Try to be the next anybody. Be the first You .