Brands, Patrons of the Arts

In Beats + Bytes by Nue Agency


I started my career during the digital revolution. The record business was being decimated and the main drivers of income for artists were live events, tours, and festivals. That was Nue’s original focus.

Despite the immense backlash over the digitization of music at the time, we firmly believed technology would not only find a way to co-exist with the art form we knew and loved, but would eventually become inseparable from it. Thus, we had a secondary focus on building bridges between tech companies and creative clients, even when both parties were leery of one another.

In 2020, we find ourselves once again in a seismic industrial shift. Bands can’t play live concerts, festival fields sit fallow, and tour promoters are clearing their calendars. The question, of course, is “what now?”

My answer? Brands become the patron saints of the arts.

We know the relationship between art and commerce can be fraught, but the convergence of music and tech has shown us what’s possible in the face of those concerns. We have here a golden opportunity to come together like never before.

Brands (the smart ones, anyway) know they need to move culture. In a world without sports or mass gatherings to distract from the horrific 24-hour news cycle, consumers demand it. The brands who connect in this era, take a stand, support the creative community, and engage their consumers in a meaningful way will be rewarded handsomely. I believe this strategy will deliver growth, customer loyalty, and other organic halo benefits we know culture marketing reaps.

One example of this type of partnership will take place tonight. The NFL Draft was supposed to be in Vegas, followed by a huge series of events and parties. Since the draft will be done virtually now, with incoming rookies enjoying these life-changing moments via camera phones, Oikos (yes, the yogurt brand) has stepped in to help consumers and players find a new way to celebrate this seminal event.

With a little help from Nue and the NFL, Oikos is having the hottest party of the week….on IG Live! At 10pm EST watch Shaquille O’Neal aka DJ Diesel turn his Orlando mega-mansion (remember that MTV Cribs episode) into a premiere afterparty fit for the social distancing era. He’s hosting all sorts of celebrity guests, NFL Player Saquon Barkley, NFL draftees and legends like Gronk, and a slew of stars including DJ Khaled, Megan Trainor, D-Nice, Toosie, and A-list gamer, Faze Apex. It’s all in the name of charity, too. Salute to Meals on Wheels!

I’m excited this came together and will be in the war room calling the plays. Hope you can tune in on Instagram at 10pm EST.

Tonight at 5pm EST we will also be hosting our second installment of Beats & Bytes Live on LinkedIn and Facebook. This week we’re talking about our recovery plan for the music industry post 2020 depression, expanding on the article Clay Durant and I recently published. We’ll walk you through the plan, add some context, and answer questions.

Join the discussion as we start to map out the future:


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