Multitasking is a new defining feature of modern people heading to success. Singer and CEO in one person Halsey shows how  the business mind can boost an artistic career. How does it works – to make yourself a business?

My name is Ashley

Several years ago, there was no Halsey. The girl has been Ashley, 19-year-old marginal in New Jersey with the past of not the most diligent, but more likely ‘’misfit’’ schoolgirl. She has grown up in an unhealthy, always ”on the road” rhythm.  At age 17 she tried to commit a suicide by overdosing on painkillers. This unsuccessful attempt was followed by almost three weeks of treatment in a psychiatric clinic where she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Arty aspirations led Ashley to reputable American school of design. But due to the unaffordable tuition fee she ended up roaming around her native neighborhood without home when the family left a girl on her own. Ashey went through a tough time. Any luck with proper education. No money and place to live. No health insurance.

I remember one time I had $9 in my bank account and bought a four-pack of Red Bull and used it to stay up overnight over the course of two or three days, because it was less dangerous to not sleep than it was to sleep somewhere random and maybe get raped or kidnapped.

Anxiety about the lodging led her to a  bohemian hotel party. There she met a string of people from the music industry who appreciated her amateur singing recorded on the phone. This acquaintance led to the first professional recording in the underground studio. What did we have in a few weeks? The song that blew up the Internet in a couple of hours, ranked in the music charts and caused a fight for her among labels. It meant the last days of Ashley, a stoner kid, and the birth of Halsey, a successful ”crazy bitch”.

“I didn’t like being Ashley Frangipane. It was a person I thought was weak, and silly, and sad.”

 

Making myself a profitable product

Halsey never walked along the beaten path. She created her own style with her own hands in everything from composing to self-representation in society. A 20- year-old girl was alone at the head of all production until the appearance of her manager, another young newcomer from New Jersey.

Halsey writes her own songs and music. She is in charge of creating her onstage style from make-up to dress-up. She designs covers for her albums. Her desire to control can go to the absurd line when only Halsey can organize herself logistics of her tour travelling. She says, ”My work is like a manifestation of me.”

It doesn’t stop after I write songs. I do that, I produce music, I have a touring company, a merch company in every international territory, I have a separate publishing company for songs I write that aren’t my own, and there’s another company for [any] fragrance, apparel, or cosmetic venture I choose to pursue. I run all these companies.

When Halsey had to choose a recording company, she preferred the one that offered her more freedom and the most creative approach. And again, Halsey was an innovator: hip-hop-oriented Astralwerks had never before worked with pop artists.

Her achievements in just has a jaw-falling effect. Until recently, Halsey was happy to sing for a couple of hundred people and now was surprised by the full house in the entire Madison Square Garden. She has several memorable collaborations on both the music scene and the advertising field (MAC Cosmetics). This June Halsey earned her first No. 1 album with hopeless fountain kingdom. It is also impressive since she was the first woman to achive this rank in 2017.

The art of building a company

I think that I don’t ever really regard myself as a CEO.That’s very new to me this weekend, confronting the fact that I’m a CEO. It wasn’t until [now] I began to view myself as — instead of facilitating a product — as when I became the product.

Now Halsey works with two managers. Although it will be more correct to call them assistants. One is responsible for organizing her tour, all the details and subtleties. During this period, not less than 150 people work for it. When Halsey is not on the tour, she has her personal assistant and collaborates with a team of several people.

According to her own conviction, Halsey rarely hears and says no. Do not doubt she would agree to the craziest idea.

 

If you look at the hands of the singer, then you can see the tattoos that they did with friends. According to her,  it is “a huge reflection of my inability to do anything alone.”

All the people in my crew are my best friends. The one thing I struggle with is looking around and realizing every person I am friends with is on my payroll.

Halsey made her company very personal, but nevertheless, she knows how to take business decisions in cool blood. Despite the fact that it was ”painful”, she fired her two friends, because it was right for the company.

Making audience your best friend

Halsey devotes considerable attention to her presence in social networks and interaction with fans. She always seeks to create a personal, slightly intimate relationship with her fans. This is the rule for all teams. Halsey is convinced that the whole team should work in the field, constantly maintain a dialogue with the audience and understand it.

If I do a 600-person signing, every single one of those fans walks away with a story, an anecdote, a compliment, something original between us. I make sure to create a unique moment. It’s not just sign a poster and ‘next!’

All her free time Halsey devotes to monitoring online space. She not only creates content, but also reads responses, comments, reviews. Halsey is convinced that communicating with fans is an ‘act of customer service’, because they are the most important for her company.

Young people are hungry and engaged. They have short attention spans but they’re not stupid. When I do something it has to be real. So if you can connect with them in a way that’s authentic and organic, and it’s benefiting them, it cuts through.”

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