Seven Things Your Business Can Learn From Rock Stars


They fill stadiums with screaming fans.
They make millions of dollars.
They are synonymous with excellence.

Rock stars.

The premise of the new book Brand Like A Rock Star is that business can learn a tremendous amount from the experiences of the legends of rock. The book deals with specific bands, specific brands, and provides specific advice to apply to your business in actionable ways.

But from a big picture perspective, what can the average business learn from the rock star? Why does the business/rock star relationship make sense?

Here are seven things you and your business can learn from rock stars.

1. Do what you love. If you do what you love to do, you’ll do it more passionately than anyone else. And if you do something with passion, the odds of doing it successfully go up infinitely. Rock stars love to rock. That’s why Mick Jagger is still singing. Do what you love.

2. Be larger than life. There’s no excitement in average. Nobody notices the business that looks and sounds like every other business. Foo Fighters is a stupid name, but unforgettable. Same with Red Hot Chili Peppers and Hootie & The Blowfish and Barenaked Ladies for that matter. Go the distance. Stand out from the crowd. Don’t be afraid to be larger than life.

3. Screw being better, just be different. Bands like the Grateful Dead and KISS weren’t at what they did, they were the only bands who did what they did. If you do something totally unique, there’s nobody to compare you to. There will always be someone better than you, but there is nobody exactly like you. Celebrate that. Be different.

4. Practice really hard. The Beatles played Hamburg for months at a time perfecting their craft. Metallica played every dive bar on the west coast before they made it big. You just don’t get to the top without a lot of practice. The same applies to business. Whatever you decide to do, perfect it. Practice really hard.

5. Find a producer. Great bands had great producers, engineers, managers, and record labels. You need people like that to see your work from the outside. Business owners are like bands, they see themselves from the inside. That’s the worst view in the world. You need a George Martin, just like The Beatles did. Get outside advice. Find a producer who isn’t afraid to tell you when you suck.

6. Take it easy. Being an up-and-comer isn’t a picnic, but real rock stars get first-class flights, penthouse hotel suites, and backstage buffets. There’s plenty of down time for true rock stars. Lenny Kravitz has a place in Bahamas. Eric Clapton kicks back in Antigua. Great business leaders know when to relax and rejuvenate their spirits. Minds that relax are minds that are open to learning and growth. Find the time to take it easy now and then.

7. Work with your friends. Eric Clapton played guitar on a Phil Collins song. Mick Jagger contributed background vocals on a Carly Simon song. Johnny Cash did the lead vocals for a U2 song. When you work with friends, you not only benefit from their contribution but you also learn from them and develop new skills. Hire great people that you love to work with and let them help you shine. Avoid unhappy people who bring you down, and work with your friends instead.

Take these seven lessons from the legends of rock to heart, and watch your business rise to the top of the charts.

Brand Like A Rock Star is now available via Amazon. You can have your copy within 24 hours! I can’t wait to hear what you think of it! It arrives at retail on October 1.

I’d love to speak directly to your company or conference about building a powerful brand using the lessons learned by rock’s legends. Contact me directly for details.

Upcoming Brand Like A Rock Star events:
Tuesday, September 27 – Calgary, AB
Wednesday, September 28 – Red Deer, AB (morning)
Wednesday, September 28 – Drumheller, AB (afternoon)
Thursday, September 29 – Edmonton, AB
Friday, October 7 – Las Vegas, NV at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino – BOOK LAUNCH EVENT!

Monday, October 17 – Moncton, NB
Thursday, October 20 – Charlottetown, PEI (Chamber of Commerce Biz2Biz Expo)
Friday, November 4 – Anchorage, AK (Alaska Broadcasters Association Convention)
Wednesday, November 23 – Winnipeg, MB
Thursday, December 15 – Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

27 Responses to “Seven Things Your Business Can Learn From Rock Stars”

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    Definitely a Kindle version on the way Michael, as well as Sony Reader, Kobo, Apple, etc. Unfortunately the timing is tough to coordinate so that everything goes live at the same time. I expect the digital versions to be available within a week or two though.

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Barenaked Ladies, Eric Clapton, Foo Fighters, Hootie and the Blowfish, Johnny Cash, KISS, Metallica, Mick Jagger, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Beatles, U2, Uncategorized 27 Comments