Let The Music Play.
What do we marketing types talk about? Passion, Sociability, Authenticity. Nice watchwords, but difficult to achieve. Yet, sitting in a friend's living room yesterday, I experienced all this and more as a small group of maybe fifteen friends and neighbours enjoyed a live performance from an EMI recording artist.
Between periods of supporting established stars on UK tours, Louise Setara has set out on an intriguing piece of grass-roots marketing by playing a small set in a series of literal lounge concerts and free live gigs. In marketing speak, you could argue that she's showing how remarkable she is in co-created environments and achieving a connection that is tangible and long-lasting. It's more accurate to describe it as seeding a self-selected audience of music-lovers united by genuine social networks. But what really counts in marketing is not hype but the visceral impact.
What counts is being passionate enough to perform, without amplification, in someone's living money to a tiny audience for no money: being sociable enough to do it with grace, wit and charm (and thus be remembered as a nice person you'd want to support); and being authentic enough to be just so damn good.
Having seen her perform with her full band in December I knew what to expect, but those who'd never heard of her will remember her and talk about her. A world away from Pop Idol or the lip-synced personal appearances they may have experienced in the past - this was the real deal. At other houses the audience will be many times larger, but the result will be the same.
The younger people who got autographs will be telling everyone in school today and guiding them to her MySpace site, while others will mention it in passing or notice when she appears on TV in coming weeks. Because of the genuine experience, the word will spread organically rather than artificially. Because of the enthusiasm, the spread will be infectious. Because of her performances, Louise Setara's big voice may have a bigger future. And you heard it here first!