I recently sat down down with Grammy-award winning writer and producer Jermaine Dupri and talked with him about his social network, Global 14, engaging fans, finding new talent, and what the future holds for the music industry.
Follow Jermaine on Twitter and check out his YouTube channel where he brings fans behind the scenes of his daily life.
What made Dupri decide to create his own webspace, Global14.com :
"The frustration of not being able to do what I wanted to do on other sites. Myspace was the beginning of me understanding what people were wanting, needing, and missing. The back and forth conversation I couldn't have on Myspace was the frustration that led me too creating Global14 because I wanted to speak directly to the people that created who I am and the artist that was me."
How is Global14 a "social city":
"You don't move to a place you don't want to live in. That's basically how I look at Global14. The members that are there, want to be there. If's not a place you stumble on, you don't come here for the numbers... you don't move to LA for the population, you move here for the (culture)."
Why smaller, more quality communities are more valuable:
"I have some people come on the site and they're like you only have 35,000 people and they're like that's not a lot, but it is a lot when they're all talking to you. I think people get it twisted. If you have a million Twitter followers, you can't even see everyone who's actually speaking to you... The more followers you have, the less you actually get to connect."
On the key to success in the music industry and why he signs certain performers over others:
"I signed this other artist by the name of Dawndrey. She grabbed me because she was engaging people on the Internet and when I found her, she actually had more followers on YouTube than artists who had records out... if you got a built-in audience, that's the key to success in this day and time right now."
Follow Shira Lazar on Twitter: www.twitter.com/shiralazar