The Science of Stardom — Part 1/4

By Dr. Monroe Mann, PhD, Esq, MBA, LLM, ME, EMT
Founder, Break Diving, Inc.

He sold out Madison Square Garden on August 31, 2010 (will no opening act) in 16 seconds, less than three years after officially starting his career, and based solely on his first album.  Having achieved this amazing feat, whether you like it or not, he is now considered among the ranks of musician legends Michael Jackson, U2, Madonna, and the Rolling Stones.

His name?  Justin Bieber.

Ozzy Ozbourne asks in the television commercial, “What is a Bieber?”  The answer is not, “A random fluke success story.”

In this article, I aim to explain why Justin Bieber succeeded, and how anyone else (i.e. you too) can copy what he and his team did to try to reach similar results.  While not everyone will have his level of success (and so quickly)… someone has to.  As I like to say, “Someone has to be on the cover of the next People Magazine… and it may as well be you.”

Folks, contrary to popular belief, his story is not all about luck (which I do not believe in) and has nothing to do with his talent (there are more talented artists out there).  It has to do with what I am calling:

The Science of Stardom.

I saw the movie Never Say Never about five years ago.  Never Say Never is the totally inspiring documentary about Bieber and his rise to stardom.  After I left the theater, two conflicting thoughts came to my head:

  • HOW INSPIRING. It was so eye opening to see what is possible in this world; to see that it is certainly not impossible to go from obscurity to stardom in just two years (and in Rebecca Black’s case, just two weeks).  It really was wonderful to see that the underdog can succeed in the hardest business of them all.

Watching the movie, however, also brought this second thought to mind:

  • HOW DEPRESSING. I thought, “But it was so random.  What does this say about my whole theory that there is no such think as luck?  Did his success happen completely on a fluke?  This can’t be!”

Well, fortunately, on this second point: that’s where I was wrong.

That night after the movie (when I should have been sleeping in prep for day 2 of the California bar exam, lol), all I was doing was tossing and turning, trying to reconcile these two conflicting thoughts in my head.  It bothered me SO much that his success was a ‘fluke’.  That someone just ‘discovered’ him on YouTube and off went his career.  It bothered me so much because I don’t believe in luck; I wanted there to be some method to the madness that is Bieber Fever; I wanted there to be some science behind his stardom.

Well, the following night—after much tossing and turning in my bed—I figured it out.  No joke: I figured out exactly what had happened.

His Story

First off, if you have not yet seen the Justin Bieber movie, “Never Say Never”… go see it.

Whether you like Bieber or not is irrelevant—I want you to watch it for the lessons you will learn.

I am not so much a fan of Justin Bieber as I am now a huge fan of his story.  Further, after you watch the movie, my article here will make a lot more sense.

For those who have not seen the film, his story is relatively simple on its face: Justin Bieber was born in Canada.  At a very young age (2 or 3), Justin showed an amazing talent for rhythm and playing the drums.

Shortly thereafter, he began to play guitar and sing and years later, he entered a talent show.

What happened next is the chain of events that led to his stardom:

  1. His mom recorded on video each of Justin’s performances singing each of the songs during the multi-day competition (and other videos) and posted them all on YouTube.
  2. He received a huge amount of viewership hits on YouTube from fans.
  3. A new talent manager from Atlanta, GA named Scooter Braun found the videos on YouTube in 2008 while searching for another artist and flew Justin and his mom down to GA.
  4. Scooter introduced Justin to the rock star/R&B musician Usher.
  5. Usher introduced Justin to the record producer L.A. Reid.
  6. L.A. Reid ultimately secured Justin Bieber’s signing to Island Records in 2009.
  7. Bieber sold out Madison Square Garden about one year later.

Yes, the above story is simplified, but it is adequately inclusive for the purposes of this article.

All I want you to do is reread that chain of events.  Try to formulate in your own head what happened.  How could everything have happened so quickly, and apparently so seamlessly?

Think about how amazing it is for an artist to sign to a record label in one year as a total unknown, and then to sell out Madison Square Garden (20,000 capacity, plus or minus) one year later.  In what seemed like 15 seconds!  THIS DOES NOT HAPPEN PEOPLE!

Well, clearly, it can, and does happen.  Because it did.

And if you follow what I am about to share with you in the blog posts that follow in this series, you can put your best foot forward to try and mimic what happened with Bieber… with your own career.

Stay tuned to this blog for more!  Part 2 is coming soon!

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