Harvard Business School Did A Case Study On The Surprise Release Of Beyonce’s Visual Album

Mike Wass | September 25, 2014 5:04 pm

Beyonce changed the music business forever on December 13, 2013 when she dropped her self-titled fifth studio album at midnight with no prior warning. The surprise release turned out to be a stroke of marketing genius — helping the LP sell 600,000+ copies in its first three days of release. It not only cemented her status as a commercial and creative force but left the rest of the game scrambling. Was this the way forward or an unrepeatable stunt?

Harvard Business School of all places has taken it upon itself to answer that question (among others) in a new case study. The most interesting piece of academia to be published probably ever investigates: “what it took to pull off the ambitious and costly campaign, the prevailing market conditions, the structural and technical obstacles, as well as the many difficult decisions Beyonce and her management team confronted along the way.”

The case study will arrive online next week. It was written by Anita Elberse (Lincoln Filene Professor of Business Administration) and Stacie Smith. The findings will also be taught in a new course called “Strategic Marketing in Creative Industries”.

Are you suddenly considering furthering your education? Let us know in the comments below.

[Via Harvard Gazette].

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