Taylor Swift is known as a music superstar, a fan-first celebrity and a downright public relations genius. During the past 13 years, Swift has left a Delicate breadcrumb trail for fans to follow and anticipate her next move. With every public move strategically planned out, including everything from live interview hints, secret clues found in outfits and Instagram posts and “Easter Eggs” hidden in every Taylor Nation album and music video, she has proven to be a master when it comes to marketing, PR and creating coverage.
With each new Taylor era, she has taken the clues she leaves to the next level. Now, as the “Lover” album is peaking, she has proven to be a PR mastermind. Here's why Taylor Swift is a sheer powerhouse of PR brilliance … Ready For It?
She uses social media platforms to connect with her target audiences personally.
Swifties all across the globe have seen the power that Taylor Swift has on social media. She doesn't delegate her platforms to someone on her staff; she uses them herself and personally listens to, responds to and retweets her fans. This personal connection shows that she genuinely cares and appreciates those who follow her even though she is extremely busy. On multiple occasions, Taylor has stealthily participated in unsuspecting fans' live streams, leaving comments and creating a relationship with her fans. While many top celebrities dread the constant social media interaction and push it off to someone else to handle, Taylor Swift’s hands-on approach has helped build a brand that connects and resonates with her audience, allowing to show the human side of her stardom. Long Live the personal interactions between Swift and her fans.
She forms strategic partnerships to broaden her reach
Like most superstars and influencers, Taylor Swift has partnered with some of the best known and loved brands in the world, including Diet Coke and Target. However, Swift consistently goes above and beyond to reach the demographics of all spectrums. Have you ever ordered a package and seen the big, brown UPS delivery truck pull up to your house? In 2017, during the "Reputation" era, Taylor partnered with the shipping company to plaster her face and album cover on the side of a select fleet of trucks in celebration of making UPS the official delivery partner for Swift's album. Her End Game was simple: sell more albums, but this not only encouraged listeners to buy physical copies of the album, she also started a social media campaign where fans who snapped a pic of a Swift adorned UPS truck and posted to social with the hashtag #TaylorSwiftDelivery had a chance to win free tickets to Swift’s tour. Her partnerships range from UPS and Apple to the American Greetings Corporation and the City of New York. Taylor Swift is everywhere her audience is and the amount of people she reaches through these strategic partnerships is monumental.
She stays true to her brand while also adapting and evolving
The old Taylor can’t come to the phone right now because she’s busy being a multi-platinum, grammy-winning, ever-evolving superstar. A true artist grows with her fans by keeping them on the edge of their seats. In PR and marketing, it's normal to expect that social norms will change and evolve over time. While many were surprised to hear Swift's changing sound from country to pop, Taylor never lost sight of who she was. From a marketing standpoint- you must either adapt to new changes or you diminish. As audiences grew up, Swift knew her sound needed to, as well. With each new album and era, Swift has reinvented herself to be relevant in everchanging media landscapes and her key audiences. She truly never goes out of Style.
I promise that you’ll never find another powerhouse like Taylor Swift. It doesn’t matter if you think she’s Untouchable or you’ve got Bad Blood, she is a strategist through and through. She engages directly with her fans, she broadens her target audience through strategic partnerships and she stays true to her brand. Her fan base is clued in, attentive, ready and willing to spend hours dissecting her every move.
So, for all the PR pros out there, when you’re struggling to find that next needle-moving strategy, take a look at how Taylor Swift has done it and remember… she’s not so different than us.