Currently Reading: The Tanning of America

 

“Currently Reading:” will be a series that focuses on the books that we at DrakeStar, LLC are…currently reading!

First up…

The Tanning of America x Steve Stoute

The Tanning of America by Steve Stoute focuses on how the emergence of hip-hop culture changed and altered the marketing/advertising landscape forever. By focusing on his own evolution as a music-turned-ad exec (and his upbringing in NY during the emergence of rap/hip-hop as a musical genre), Stoute describes how the landscape of the advertising agency was forever altered through the trends and “tanning moments” brought on by hip-hop. Beginning as a road manager and working his way up through the music industry and eventually opening his own ad agency, Stoute explores how hip-hop cultural cues informed and altered the behavior of marketing and advertising executives. Hip-hop as a culture proved itself to be more than a fad and trend, and had staying power. And that staying power had the ability to take brands and re-invent them through the cultural lens of hip-hop.

Not a particularly quick read, but The Tanning of America provides insights, anecdotes and statistics on how a musical genre and culture forever changed how advertising is viewed. Many topics of business are broached and he does a particularly good job in explaining how psychographics can be a much more effective tool in advertising and marketing endeavors. Instead of segmenting customers by just age, race and net income, understanding the mindset of a group and how they think can be a powerful tool in finding the most effective way to market to them.

Have you read The Tanning of America? If so, what do you think? Does Stoute get it right when he says that hip-hop as a musical genre and culture fundamentally changed marketing/advertising forever?

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