A year ago Beyoncé became the first woman of color to headline the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in April 2018. Even Beyonce herself seemed to be excited about this historical moment when she said “Thank you for letting me be the first black woman to headline Coachella. “Ain’t that ’bout a bitch?” The performance marked her return to the stage since giving birth to her twins Rumi and Sir Carter.
The 2018 Coachella performance was described by many as historic and has been dubbed "Beychella". Videos and pictures flooded the internet for weeks as many of us got a glimpse of Beychella. However, this was just the beginning of an intricate marketing and business plan that would manifest one-year later with Netflix presenting Beyonce's Homecoming.
Beychella gave us a bold and fearless performance that repped the culture to the fullest, while Homecoming gave us the making of a vision realized. During Homecoming we learned that six months after giving birth, the work began. According to Vulture, First, Beyonce and her music director, Derek Dixie, started with four months of rehearsals with the band. Then on top of that came four more months of dance rehearsals. Beyonce has proven to be a visionary, creator and businesswomen who continues to inspire and demonstrate her business savvy again and again across industries.
So how did she do it?
Here are five business lessons from Beyonce's homecoming.
- VISION. Have a clear vision for everything you do and leave room for more. We have Homecoming for now but Beyonce has reportedly signed a $60 million three-project deal with Netflix so there is more to come.
- BRAND. Properly brand everything connected to your work. When Netflix tweeted on April 7, 2018, it didn't take long for the public to recognize that the colors and greek font matched Beyoncé’s Coachella merch. The details may seem minor in the beginning. But the teaser tweet fueled anticipation and excitement simply by using branded colors and fonts directly tied to Beyonce's 2018 Coachella performance.
3. PLANNING. Planning is a must and timing is everything! That's the baseline for excellence in all industries. It's no coincidence that Homecoming was released one year after her 2018 Coachella performance and just a few days before the 2019 Coachella performances. For those who missed the 2018 Coachella performance, Beyonce and Netflix capitalized on the timing by giving us Homecoming 2019 circa de 2018 during Coachella 2019. So timing is a major factor. But we must also consider that the success of a project is strongly linked to the implementation of tried and tested marketing strategies. Beyonce has been the queen of secretly dropping projects since 2013 and this year was no different. We got a teaser and later on a trailer for Homecoming. Then we got Homecoming: The Live Album, Frankly Beverly's "Before I Let Go" covered by Beyonce, and a new social media challenge, the Before I Let Go challenge.
4. COLLABORATION. The undertaking of a vision is rarely the work of one but many. Don't be afraid to collaborate. When you realize that the project or work is bigger than you then and only then does the full manifestation begin with all players in place.
5. OWNERSHIP. Most recently, Beyonce took ownership of her activewear line, Ivy Park and although she is now teaming up with Adidas to create and relaunch Ivy Park, she will retain ownership. The same seems to be true for her Coachella performance. According to sources who spoke with Variety, Beyoncé was paid $20 million for the rights to Homecoming, which is part of a $60 million Netflix deal. The lesson here is you can't sell what you don't own.
Beyonce made history with her 2018 Coachella performance and was reportedly paid $8 million dollars. From 8 million she secured a 60 million Netflix deal and released the live album version of her 2018 Coachella performance. It's amazing how a moment in time can recapture the hearts of people when it's offered again at just the right time and in a different format.
Which lesson helped you the most?