Friday, July 16, 2010

Lady Gaga Named Most Creative Person In Business By Fast Company Magazine!

Link to Dan Macsai's article:

Lady Gaga Is Shocked At the Honor
The moment after reading writer Dan Macsai's article about Lady Gaga in the June 2010 issue of Fast Company magazine, listing the 100 Most Creative People in Business, I knew that I had never read something like it before. This article is concise, structured, and full of colorful quotes that speak to the heart of Lady Gaga’s way of thinking.

The structure of the article is what really makes me smile because the structure makes the article flow. Macsai really composed the article smartly beginning it with an intro that mentions Gaga’s music first instead of her outfits. From there he builds the article into a presentation of Gaga as an artist and a fantastic business woman.

The article’s title “Lady Gaga, Pop artist” alludes to the dual meaning of that title. It’s her occupation, but there are two aspects of that occupation: in the musician sense and in the artsy Andy Warhol sense. Gaga is a pop singer who makes pop music, but she’s also a Pop artist who makes Pop art just as her idol Andy Warhol did. Like Warhol, Gaga takes pieces of pop culture and re-contextualizes them, and as a result assigns the pieces new meanings.

In the opening paragraph, Macsai uses Gaga’s lyrics to show that she uses references from her own life experiences in her music. He also mentions her humble beginnings and the drive she had to achieve her dreams, and this mention foreshadows the incredible accomplishments that make up the rest of the article.

Macsai sums up what Gaga does as a performance artist in the second paragraph. By talking about the references of her brand, such as “disco stick,””Madonna’s glitter-glam fashion” and shocking, Alice Cooper-like performances, he links that sentence to the following sentence about critics calling her derivative. Disco is from the past, Madonna is from the past and Alice Cooper is from the past. Then he discusses how Gaga’s brand spread like wildfire because of the Web. The paragraph ends with a sentence mentioning the power of Gaga’s brand when it’s partnered with another brand.

Macsai uses the next paragraph to show how Gaga’s ubiquity has made her attractive to other companies with their brands to sell. He talks about how the Web has helped Gaga become ubiquitous, and has made her brand global. The last sentence of this paragraph refers to her “outlandish fashion sense.”

The power of Gaga’s mind-blowing outfits is the focus of the following paragraph, and how her brand is fueled not only by the Web, but by the visual sense of her brand. The visuals support the other aspects of her brand, like music and social commentary. The last sentence points out that Gaga’s visually-strong music videos dominate the Web.

That flows into the next paragraph that has a topic sentence that points out that Gaga’s music videos function as marketing tools, as well as artistic statements. Gaga gives the brands and products exposure, and uses them as social commentary. She is simultaneously participating in the capitalist system she comments on.

The article focuses on the business side of Gaga, which makes sense since it’s a part of Fast Company's “100 Most Creative People in Business” issue. It’s also appropriate because Gaga is constantly used as an example of brilliant public relations, branding, marketing, which all makes for a great business plan. She does everything right and it’s a great thing to see. The quote from Polaroid CMO Jon Pollock about how when he met with Gaga he expected her to talk about “pink boas," but instead she talked about digital strategy and the best way to reach her generation is telling. It proves that there is an intelligent mind that exists behind Lady Gaga’s artifice.

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