How does popular culture become popular? How do artifacts and expressions of popular culture find their audiences? Or, how do audiences find them? In this module, you explore approaches creators and distributors of popular culture use to find and develop audiences. For instance, sometimes an intended audience does not respond to a particular popular culture artifact or expression. In these cases, the artifact or expression may disappear or may find a completely different audience. The use of influencers, people or organizations that explicitly or implicitly endorse an artifact or expression, may make the difference between incredible popularity or simply fading and being forgotten. As you explore the resources for this module, consider how audiences for popular culture artifacts/expression are created or developed.
VIDEO: WHY VIDEOS GO VIRAL (7:20)
This talk by Kevin Allocca, YouTube’s trends manager, identifies how and when videos “go viral” (i.e., become ragingly popular).
Why Videos Go Viral
TEDYouth 2011. (2011, February 27). Kevin Allocca: Why videos go viral [Video file]. Retrieved from: https://www.ted.com/talks/kevin_allocca_why_videos_go_viral
ARTICLE: STREAMING MAKES ROCK ROYALTY NOW: GRAMMY WINNER LORDE FIRST MADE A BIT SPLASH VIA DIGITAL STREAMING
This article details how Lorde found an international audience despite being a virtual unknown outside of New Zealand.
Streaming Makes Rock Royalty Now: Grammy Winner Lorde First Made a Bit Splash Via Digital Streaming
Snider, M. (2014). Streaming makes rock royalty now: Grammy winner Lorde first made a big splash via digital streaming. USA Today. Retrieved from the Walden University databases
Time Estimate: 5 min
BOOK EXCERPT: FUSE MUSIC TELEVISION: CHALLENGING INCUMBENTS WITH CULTURAL JUJITSU
This reading is from a book called Cultural Strategy: Using Innovative Ideologies to Build Breakthrough Brands, which is about the innovative and insurgent marketing strategies for popular culture. The book addresses how popular culture finds and develops its audiences and, at the same time, can restrict the development of new popular culture distribution organizations. The book includes discussions of everything from Nike, to Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, to branding social innovations. The selection above focuses on how a music video channel, Fuse, took on the giant MTV (Music Television) in an effort to reach the audience MTV originally appealed to; people who want to watch music videos, not reality shows or adult-themed cartoons.
Fuse Music Television: Challenging Incumbents with Cultural Jujitsu
Holt, D., & Cameron, D. (2012). Fuse music television: Challenging incumbents with cultural jujitsu. In Cultural strategy: Using innovative ideologies to build breakthrough brands (pp. 245–264). New York: Oxford University Press.
Time Estimate: 60 min
Now that you have explored the resources, in your ePortfolio take time to write down your ideas about ways that popular culture becomes popular and why. This can be a bulleted list of phrases, or short paragraphs with complete sentences. Note: The more you write, the more you will remember and the more information you will have to draw on for your Performance Task Assessment.