Four Lessons PR Professionals Can Learn From Drake

By Cat Huynh

Do Right And Kill Everything

1. Branding 101

Drake is a powerful influencer. From ‘YOLO’ to ‘HYFR,’ Drake has the power to make phrases trend and sell things out in an instant. Why? It’s hard to exactly pinpoint how or why Drake is so popular, but some might say it’s because he’s a confident musician who can be authentically vulnerable. From shooting music videos that feature his dad-like dancing to shooting out diss tracks that get nominated for Grammy’s, Drake brands himself as… himself. And yet, he does in an extremely strategic way. The dad-dancing and diss track shows who he is and what he’s about, all while generating buzz. In public relations, we’re taught to find the right line between organic and strategic – Drake has mastered that line. Time to take notes!

2. “Keep it 100”

Drake Pointing

Following the 2014 NFL crisis with Ray Rice, the controversy showed how important it is for PR professionals to be transparent. When it comes down to your own code of ethics, do the right thing. Just as you should keep it real with yourself, you should keep it real with your company. When you have to release some bad news, don’t try to sugarcoat it; the truth will always come out in the end. Instead, own up to your company’s mistakes and carry on with “business as usual.”

3. Less is more – Be conservative with social media posts.

Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all, but for Drake and other popular brands, research suggests brevity is king. Drake doesn’t tweet very often, but when he does, his 27.3 million followers pay attention. Although you should definitely engage with consumers through social media, know your limits. If you only make posts for the important stuff, then each post will carry more weight and people will pay more attention to it.

Drake Instagram

On the other hand, Drake will break the Golden Rule of Instagram by posting more than once a day… But what’s really important is that he only posts one-sentence or one-word captions, then proceeds to accumulate an average of 200,000 likes per photo. “The rookie and the vet.”

4. Remember to have fun

You’re going into public relations. Yes, we have to work on clients with major crises or ambitious (read: challenging) requests, but what you’re doing is exciting! We have the capacity to make a positive difference for clients, create meaningful relationships and connections, and have the opportunity to change public opinion. Have fun with your career, but never forget to make an appropriate response when your hotline blings.



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