The Marketing and PR Behind Frank Ocean’s Endless & Blonde and its kick towards the Music Industry

By Brayon Potillo

Frank Ocean is a man, a myth, and a legend. A man who has single handedly inspired a generation with both his poise and his distinct voice. A myth due to his brief absence as if only to be a children’s tale. Lastly, a legend for the marketing impact behind his sophomore releases of Endless & Blonde.

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Frank Ocean is 28-year-old singer/songwriter, who helped pen tracks for the likes of many artists until signing a music contract with Island Def Jam in 2011; however, the system behind the label was faulty and it held Frank’s potential, but in the faultiness it inspired a new rebellion. Indeed, Frank Ocean had signed a bad deal and was soon to begin his season of being a sat on the bench for a number of seasons until put in the game. Frank was a genius, but his genius would go unnoticed until the free release of Nostalgia, Ultra. To those who remember this release, it came as no surprise with a statement of  disatisfaction towards the label, which proceeded to get the label’s attention and allowed a commercial release.

Frank’s Statement to Def Jam

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Although, the mess had been cleaned up, Frank had not forgotten about the spilled beans and proceeded in anonymity to offer one of the greatest releases and marketing schemes Generation Y has seen since the duration of his previous works. Frank had planned on dropping two albums. One under that would fulfill his contractual obligations under Def Jam and another that would release independent via boysdontcry.co 

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Endless the visual album Frank released, which the 45-minute video shows Frank building a stairway while featuring 18 new songs; but, why via boysdontcry? I remember that night where twitter was in a frenzy. A lot of the youth were asking, “what was the meaning of boydontcry” and “why was Frank building a stairway necessarily?” Who would’ve thought possibly to escape. Afterall, he did become in entrapped in deal that brought him nothing but a lack of distrust and a lack of support, which after the constructing of the stairway ended Blonde was released.

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Blonde was Frank’s introduction into the world as a phoenix that rose from the ashes. Frank was now an independent artist with an independent record label titled BoysDontCry. The project was released exclusively via Apple Music, while being released via pop up shops around the nation. It was this that shocked the world even his ex-label, where they decided to not allow exclusive deals with streaming services ever. With a long hiatus from this industry, Frank had returned as king with control over his kingdom.By releasing releasing two albums back to back, Frank and his team had created one of the most flawless marketing campaigns for an artist in high demand and had helped build his escape out the trenches.

Photos:

Google Image Search

Franglosa, Lucas. “Why We Still Don’t Have Any New Frank Ocean.” Verge Campus. N.p., 19 Apr. 2016. Web. 05 Mar. 2017.

Ocean, Frank. “FRANK OCEAN.” FRANK OCEAN – BOYS DON’T CRY. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2017.

Xiomara Blanco August 19, 2016 1:38 AM PDT. “The Wait for a New Frank Ocean Album Is Over, Kind of.” CNET. N.p., 19 Aug. 2016. Web. 05 Mar. 2017.

Citations:

Dombal, Ryan. “Frank Ocean : Nostalgia, Ultra. | 7.8.” Frank Ocean: Nostalgia, Ultra. Album Review | Pitchfork. N.p., 04 Mar. 2011. Web. 19 Feb. 2017.

Singleton, Micah. “Frank Ocean’s Release of Blonde Marks the Start of a Major Fight in the Music Industry.” The Verge. The Verge, 24 Aug. 2016. Web. 19 Feb. 2017.

Gensler, Andy. “With ‘Blonde,’ Frank Ocean’s Real Revolution Was in His Business Moves.” Billboard. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Feb. 2017.

Images, Ilya S. Savenok/Getty. “Did Frank Ocean Pull a Fast One on His Label by Going Indie? An Explainer.” Vulture. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Feb. 2017.

McFarland, Brandon. “Def Jam Finally Believes In Frank Ocean.” Def Jam Finally Believes In Frank Ocean. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Feb. 2017.

Endless. Dir. Frank Ocean. Perf. Frank Ocean. Endless. Boysdontcry, n.d. Web.

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UNT Eagle Strategies

Class members of the social media class in the Mayborn School of Journalism