Many artists are located in Berlin, this makes it more convenient especially when it comes to meetings. Sometimes you save many emails by meeting them in person. Sometimes, PR became more important than marketing. KIMKOM has always been trying to be ahead of the curve. We also know our workflow and what fits best for the artist. And I’ve been working with artists for so many years, I know exactly what they need. Social media has become a huge burden for some artists. Everyone wants them to share their every moment, but the biggest aim for many artists is to stay private. Not only for artists, I think also for us in general, our privacy becomes our biggest luxury of all.
It’s so funny, I just realized I never had that situation. I think it’s because we’re doing so much research ahead, and asking so many inconvenient questions to artists. By then, we know if this is going to be successful or not. For example, we turned down to work with Johnny Depp & Alice Cooper a year ago, because he still had this ongoing court case about domestic violence that could have backfired on us. At the same time, my agency was supporting Google #womenswill on women empowerment. That would have interfered. We ended up turning it down. We try to stay ahead of bad results by scanning and analyzing before taking over a new project.
There’s no strategy. For example, you have a global superstar DJ. He is everywhere. He doesn’t sleep, he’s always in the plane. It’s impossible to set up a GQ cover shooting for him. So how do you make PR with him? We would focus on content and talk to his team to produce more content that we can spread, instead of doing it the old-fashioned way of traveling to radio & TV stations. Then, let’s say you have this TikTok mega star who wants to expose everything about himself, because he’s in his early 20s. Also, there’s a huge difference between artists who are millennials or not. With millennials, it becomes so much easier as they are aware of the importance of social media. Sometimes we even have to tell them not to show everything until the next release. There is always a solution for everything. I think the bottom line of all strategies is to remain calm and mindful.
I always thought I am really safe in this creative industry. But 20 years ago, I was going to be introduced to a well-respected German artist. I stood in the line next to a CEO who was at least double of my age at that time. When the artists came to me he asked the CEO (not me) if I was his new wife. I was so shocked at first, and he was so embarrassed after I cleared the situation that I was his video plugger. You just learn not to be mad with your cultural background. I had to force myself to speak up. And a few months ago, I just realized that I’m the first Asian who founded an agency in Germany because I’m the second generation of immigrants. You have to come out of your shyness and stand up for yourself, because there is no one else who’s doing this for you. I decided to speak up, otherwise the society won’t change. I think it’s a big burden to stay nice instead of being inconvenient for five minutes and just tell people the truth.
Absolutely. You have so many more tools, you have networks, you can connect much easier, and you have women who inspire people. You feel less alienated when you can share your story that other people could relate. Nowadays, you have so much more power.
Below are some unique ways Berlin creatives are tackling the issues brought by the virus:
Locals have come together to collect emergency funding for at-risk nightlife workers in Berlin. The shutting down of nightclubs means these people are out of jobs, and this emergency funding helps mitigate the economic damage that COVID-19 is creating.