I’ve always been a little skeptical of advertising.
I started undergrad as a business major, but switched to world studies after I developed an interest in my humanities courses. Outside of school, I was beginning to write and take music more seriously; I started a few mildly successful bands, got signed to labels, started going on tours. Making music catered to the artistic, humanities-driven side of me, but I began to see how important it is for an artist to maintain a strong brand image and marketing strategy in order to lead a sustainable career.
It’s an awful feeling to have to work a low paying job you don’t care about when all you want to do is make things you love. So many artists have to do it, and I was determined to get out of the cycle and help others do the same. Unfortunately, this is where I realized that although humanities was very important in shaping my worldview, the decision to drop my business degree was coming back to haunt me in the professional world.
When I learned about Brandcenter, I knew this was a place where I could really hone the skills I needed to support creators and their creations — be it artists and their music, or brands and their products. It was a place where I could meet others who were as obsessed as I was about finding the best path forward despite challenges.
In my two years at Brandcenter, I’ve seen how advertising can influence the world in a positive, beautiful way. I’m now more certain than ever that branding and marketing is just as important as the music being produced, if not more. There is a lot of shock and awe in that realization, and with it a sense of duty to create things that are socially responsible. I want to use the skills I’ve learned at Brandcenter to make a difference in positive ways.
Zavi Harman (ST, 2020)