The Real Reason Why Beats By Dre Are So Popular
I've been producing music and Hip Hop beats as a hobby now for over 10 years and I am now in my 30's. I grew up listening to all different types of music, but as a teenager I became especially obsessed with Rap music and the general Hip Hop culture and that's when I started getting into music production. This was in the mid to late 90's so I grew up listening to Rap just a few short years after Death Row Records was in it's glory days and when artists like Tupac Shakur and Dr. Dre were on top of the charts and in their prime. So naturally, being a Hip Hop enthusiast as well as a producer myself, when I first heard about a new pair of headphones marketed with Dr. Dre's name, I had to check them out and get the low down on them to see what made them so special. Beats By Dre, as they are called, have become a very hot selling product amongst today's teens and young 20 somethings. The company they are introduced by is Beats Electronics, in a partnership with Monster cable. So when I checked them out, I looked at their frequency and compared them to other types of headphones that are made for the same purpose and I compared their overall sound to that of other types of studio headphones in the same price range so see if they are actually good. After a careful evaluation, I noticed they were decent, but the truth is that they are basically a pair of $100 headphones with a $200-$250 price tag fixed on them. For half the price of Beats By Dre, a person could buy a pair of Audio Technica or AKG headphones with the same or better quality that are actually worth the money. So I thought "Why would anybody want to pay twice the price or more for something that is so obviously a rip off? Why are Beats By Dre so popular with today's youth?". Then I thought "Oh it's because it has Dr. Dre pushing them so kids think they are real quality headphones since Dre says they are and since his name is well respected in the Hip Hop community and commonly associated with clean sounding production on all his beats".
That was my initial assessment of these headphones, but I later realized that I was wrong. Not wrong about the headphones being a rip off and being overpriced, but wrong as to why today's younger generation seem to be so in love with these particular headphones verses all the other types out there with equal quality. It dawned on me that kids aren't buying them because they think the sound is great. While I'm sure there's a few that do buy them thinking that, the majority are buying them for a completely different reason. One day I saw someone on an internet forum ask where they can get fake Beats since they didn't have a lot of money. This reminded me of how people of all ages buy fake designer clothing when they can't afford the real thing, but for the same reason as why people buy the real thing, for social status. It was then that it suddenly occurred to me. Kids are buying Beats by Dre for the way they look. They are buying them to fit in, like how girls in the 80's wore 54-11 Reeboks or how everyone was wearing Cross Colours and Stussy in the 90's. To today's kids, wearing a certain type of headphones on your head and being seen with them is equivalent to somebody walking around with a Prada purse hanging from their shoulder or someone buying a Mercedes car mainly for the symbolic ornament that comes on the hood, both of which are viewed as things that represent social status.
Dr. Dre and his associates have figured a way to create a new social status product where there currently wasn't one. Clothing, vehicles, watches, homes, jewelry, makeup, and a number of other products or industries have historically been used by the masses to convey their social status to the public and their peers. But never has a pair of headphones stood as a status symbol all by itself. The people who purchase Beats By Dre don't even need to own an Mp3 player or Ipod to convey this status, they can simply wear the headphones on their head or around their neck without ever having to plug them into anything to achieve the "Beats by Dre look". So it should come as no surprise that in light of Dr. Dre's hugely successful ploy to teenagers and young adults, there's been a number of other strategies being incorporated into the Beats by Dre business model to maximize profits. Dr. Dre, while crossing racial and cultural barriers into white suburbia, mainly appeals specifically to the Hip Hop crowds. The largest market out there is the Pop music crowd, so in order to capitalize on them as well, Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber have signed on to add their names to the marketing strategy, with their own versions of Beats By Dre, Heartbeats and Justbeats. But wait, what about sports fans? There's lots of them who may not be into either type of music. Well don't worry about that, Dre's got you covered! Professional basketball star Lebron James has also climbed aboard with his own version of Beats called "Powerbeats".
As if all this weren't enough, the people at Beats Electronics haven't stopped there. Being the true business entrepreneurs that they are, they haven't forgotten about those who are into Hip Hop but middle aged and going through a midlife crisis or those who are young and who already have achieved lots of financial success or inherited money. So to corner this market, they've even worked out a deal with Chrysler to have the new 2012 Chrysler 300s series delivered from the factory with audio systems fitted with speakers by none other than yours truly, Beats By Dre. In addition to this, they've also figured out a way to keep making money from those who have already purchased a pair of Beats, by buying the popular music service MOG, so they can now offer a digital download and music subscription service at a monthly rate to all Beats customers.
So all in all, the Beats By Dre line is one of the most highly successful marketing strategies that any Hip Hop artist or producer has ever came up with. So if you're a teen, a young 20 something, or even a middle-aged person who's recently experienced a midlife crisis, rest assured that Dr. Dre and his large network of celebrity friends can prescribe you just the medicine you need to get your social status fix and a great way to fit in with your peers, for only twice the price you'd pay for an equal pair of headphones with less flair and less popularity.
comments powered by Disqus