TikTok star Dixie D'Amelio recently released her first single, "Be Happy." The song was released under a new family-owned label, DAM FAM Recordings, and reached over 1 million Spotify streams within its first weekend. With millions of followers across many social-media platforms, D'Amelio and her family are a powerhouse in the influencer industry. Her sister Charli is TikTok's most followed creator with 73 million followers, and their parents Heidi and Marc also have large followings online. Business Insider spoke with the family's comanagers about developing a song with Dixie and their plans to work with more talent on music going forward. Subscribe to Business Insider's influencer newsletter: Influencer Dashboard.
TikTok star Dixie D'Amelio and her internet-famous family aren't betting on an established record label for her introduction into the music industry. Instead, they are counting on the massive fanbase their family has built across social media. At the end of June, Dixie released her first single titled "Be Happy" under her family-owned label, DAM FAM Recordings. The song reached over 1 million Spotify streams within its first weekend and at the beginning of July, Dixie made Billboard's list of Emerging Artists. She first teased to the song on TikTok in June, singing an a capella rendition of it for her 30 million TikTok followers. The music video, which was released on July 1, has 52 million views on YouTube. With millions of followers across many social-media platforms, Dixie and her family are a powerhouse in the influencer industry. Her sister Charli is TikTok's most followed creator with 73 million followers (that number will have likely changed by the time you read this), and their parents Heidi and Marc also have large followings online. Outside of TikTok, the sisters have landed traditional Hollywood roles (Charli is the voice of a character in a new animated film), spent time with celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, and are the face of new product collabs with companies like Hollister and Morphe Cosmetics. To make it all happen, the D'Amelios are comanaged by the firms Outshine Talent and Manncom Creative Partners, and represented by United Talent Agency for larger business ventures, like going on tour, or a possible reality TV show which the family has teased recently. Barbara Jones, who is the founder of Outshine Talent, and Billy Mann, the founder of Manncom Creative Partners, weren't initially brought on to help the family with music projects. But as they discovered Dixie's interest and talent, they were able to create a plan using the deep knowledge of the industry they shared from past experiences working at top record labels. For Dixie, the launch of her new song is the start of a larger strategy, Jones said. It will rely on the family's celebrity-level team and the massive distribution funnel the D'Amelios have built across TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube, rather than a traditional record label. Business Insider spoke with Jones and Mann about developing the song and their plans to work with more talent on music going forward.
Inside developing the song The idea to work with Dixie on a song came after her dad Marc shared a video of her singing at a school event with Mann and Jones late last year. "We have to remember, a year ago Dixie was in school and the parents were carpooling to dance class," Mann said. "She can really sing and has her own style and her own manner of singing which is a lot harder to come by. There's a distinct character to her voice." The song was recorded in Mann's private home studio earlier this spring, he said. Mann said he sent Dixie dozens of songs to look over and they would spend hours talking about them over FaceTime. She eventually choose "Be Happy," which was produced by Christian Medice (who has worked with Halsey) and was cowritten by Medice, Samantha DeRosa, Joe Kirkland, and Mann. "When she heard 'Be Happy,' it really resonated with her and I think it resonated with her because sometimes being happy is not easy, especially with the way the world is now," Mann said. "It felt like Dixie," Jones added. "This was a good song for her style and her range. There's nothing wishy-washy about Dixie." Days before the song was released, Mann told the family that given her audience online, and the fact that she was a brand new artist, Dixie could expect between 100,000 and 250,000 streams within the first week. But like most everything the family does online, the song was instantly trending and received widespread interest across many social-media platforms.
How the team behind Dixie's music came together Both Mann and Jones have worked for a variety of record companies over the years. In 2007, Jones was the head of marketing for Columbia Records in New York, and she later started her own influencer-marketing agency. She shifted her business to talent management after meeting and signing the D'Amelios as talent. Mann has been writing and producing for over 25 years, has worked with artists like P!nk, and has cowritten songs nominated for a Grammy. He met Jones over a decade ago while they were both working at Columbia Records, and Jones reached out to him last year looking to see if he would be interested in managing the family together. The D'Amelios are also represented by UTA agents Greg Goodfried and Ali Berman, who cohead the digital talent department, and music agent David Klein, who also played a role in the song development. Since working with the family, Jones and Mann have constantly scoured social-media for new talent, and they are "always texting each other links to potential talent," Mann said. They want to continue to work with digital clients who sing and dance on new projects. "We aren't interested in one lane," Jones said. "We are looking for people who want a well-rounded career."SEE ALSO: Inside UTA's deal with TikTok star Charli D'Amelio and how the talent agency plans to expand her influencer business Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Here's what it's like to travel during the coronavirus outbreak
More like this (3)
YouTube manager secrets, making 'slime' money on TikTok, and how much 1 million YouTube views is worth
Welcome back to this week's Influencer Dashboard newsletter! This is Amanda Perelli, writing to you from...Welcome back to this week's Influencer Dashboard newsletter! This is Amanda Perelli, writing to you from home, and here's an update on what's new in the business of influencers and creators. This week, I spoke to five talent managers who work with YouTube creators across the lifestyle, gaming, beauty, and fashion verticals to learn what it's really like to manage influencers. The life of a YouTube manager can be exciting, with exclusive red carpet events and fun projects. But it can also be a challenging gig, as "cancel culture" continues to grow and the latest crop of influencers gets younger in age. The managers painted a picture of a job that often consumes their entire day, from chasing down their clients for a response to spending hours talking them through a sudden PR disaster. Some managers shared experiences when a brand didn't take their client seriously or tried to sneak in agreement terms on a contract. "We end up becoming the talent's most trusted advisor," one manager said. "We get phone calls when talent are going through a breakup and we have to be the understanding shoulder to cry on, and that's not in the typical job description." They also shared an honest "day in the life," the art of negotiating a deal, what they look for in a client (and the traits that turn them away). "There's scandals, people going on Twitter and PR disasters that you have to talk them through," one the managers said of the job. "I've had a couple of hacking scandals – that happens a lot where the account gets hacked into and they lose followers. I've had people hacking in and take nudes and leak nudes. I've had people take photos of underage clients at parties and take photos of them smoking weed and that's ruined brand deals for them. I've had parents steal money from clients before." The managers said editing is the largest time suck for their YouTube clients, but influencers are often hesitant on hiring someone new to take over. Read the full post here. You can read most of the articles here by subscribing to BI Prime. And if this is your first time reading Influencer Dashboard, subscribe to the newsletter here. A 15-year-old 'slime' influencer made $1,000 in sales in a week after TikTok star Addison Rae reviewed his homemade products and it shows the app's e-commerce potential Self-described "slimer" Ricky Waite told my colleague Dan Whateley that his TikTok profile blew up after popular influencer Addison Rae Easterling reviewed one of his slimes earlier this month, driving over $1,000 in slime sales on his Etsy shop and adding 40,000 followers to his TikTok slime account in a few days. "To balance school and slime is pretty difficult because I've posted every single day on my Instagram account for I think two years," the high school sophomore told Dan. "I'm staying up sometimes until 1 a.m. doing my homework, but I still have to find time throughout my day to sneak a little bit of slime time." Slime accounts, in which social-media users post videos of themselves playing with the tactile toy, have been trending on platforms like Instagram and YouTube for years and have recently gotten a boost from consumers who are sheltering in place at home. Read how Waite achieved TikTok fame and launched a slime business here. A Sony Music exec explains the label's TikTok strategy and how it responds when a song like 'Break My Stride' catches fire TikTok has become a major driver of trends in the music industry in recent months. In January, Sony Music noticed that one of its songs, Matthew Wilder's 1983 hit "Break My Stride," was surging on TikTok. Dan spoke with the marketing team at Sony Music's Legacy Recordings, which manages "Break My Stride" and the rest of the record label's legacy song catalog, to learn more about the company's strategy for amplifying older songs that have reemerged into cultural relevancy. "Our entire music catalog is effectively tracked on a daily basis," said Andy McGrath, the senior vice president of marketing at Legacy Recordings. "We're constantly monitoring actions, reactions, and trends that happen on TikTok. We watch what's happening and how many people are creating their own challenges and sharing existing challenges, et cetera, and then we start to say, 'Okay something's happening here.'" When a song in Sony's collection begins to trend on social media, the company jumps into action to try to fan the flames and help boost its plays on streaming platforms. Read more on Sony Music's TikTok strategy here. How much money YouTube pays for 1 million views, according to 5 creators How much money a YouTube creator makes for a viral video with 1 million views varies, but is usually a big payday. I spoke with five YouTube creators about how much each of them earned from videos with a million views or more. The rate the influencer gets from Google's AdSense program depends on a number of factors, from the place in the video where viewers normally drop off, to the type of advertisers the video attracts. Many creators have ad-placement strategies for earning the most money possible. Their answers ranged from $3,600 to $40,000. Read the full post on how much YouTube pays for 1 million views, here. Exclusive: YouTube creator and competitive eater Matt Stonie has signed with talent management firm Night Media Matt Stonie, a YouTube creator and competitive eater with 11 million subscribers, has signed with the talent management firm Night Media. Stonie averages around 60 million views per month on YouTube and his content revolves around massive food challenges (like eating 203 Chips Ahoy cookies or 10,000 calories of chili cheese fries) where he shows off his ability to consume huge amounts of food quickly. He has set several world records, like eating 20.08 lbs of pumpkin pie in 8 minutes. He also won the 2015 Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest. Stonie will be managed by Nick Brotman, who also manages YouTube creators Unspeakable (19 million YouTube subscribers), Mini Ladd (7 million YouTube subscribers), and Twitch streamer and TikTok creator Neekolul. Night Media is a Dallas-based digital management company that manages YouTube stars like MrBeast and Preston Arsement. What else happened on BI Prime: How much advertisers have cut their influencer budgets in 2020, according to a survey of marketers who control $46 billion in annual spending: Dan wrote that many brands are not canceling influencer campaigns outright but postponing them to adjust production plans or to retool messaging. New TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer highlights music and gaming as focus areas in his first statements after being poached from Disney: Dan wrote that as a relative newcomer to the social-media scene, TikTok's had an outsize impact on the music industry and has recently drawn interest from gaming and esports companies. 16 YouTube stars reveal how much they get paid per 1,000 views: I spoke with 16 YouTube creators about how much each of them earn on average for every 1,000 views (their CPM). 5 YouTube creators break down their monthly incomes from the platform: I also spoke with influencers who broke down how much they'd earned in a month from the platform. This week on Insider's digital culture desk: A 'Bachelor' contestant was the target of an intricate misinformation campaign. Now, the online fandom that 'canceled' her wants to apologize: Margot Harris wrote that Jenna Cooper, a popular "Bachelor" and "Bachelor in Paradise" contestant, was forced to retreat from the spotlight after rumors surfaced that she'd gotten engaged on the show for publicity and maintained a relationship with a "sugar daddy." Lifestyle influencers are using COVID-19 to spread QAnon conspiracy theories: 'I truly believe I owe it to my audience to be more for them during this turning point in our culture': Rachel Greenspan reported that the spread represents a dangerous trend toward belief in unverified information online. The first YouTube channel to surpass 1 billion weekly views posts animated kid's nursery rhymes. More than 1,600 people watch its videos every second: Kat Tenbarge reported that on May 17, Cocomelon hit a new viewership milestone, becoming the first YouTube channel in history to surpass 1 billion views within a week, according to data published by Tubefilter. Here's what else we're reading: TikTokers Charli and Dixie D'Amelio to Launch Podcast: Natalie Jarvey from The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the TikTok stars will be launching a podcast with Ramble, the podcast network joint venture between Cadence13 and UTA. Don't let the COVID crash fool you. It's still a great time to be a YouTuber: Meira Gebel from Digital Trends wrote that creators who work primarily on YouTube have recently leaned into other social media platforms, like Instagram and TikTok, to connect with a broader audience. Thanks for reading! Send me your tips, comments, or questions: email@example.com. Subscribe to the newsletter here.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Why Pikes Peak is the most dangerous racetrack in America
She’s written hits for Lizzo and Rita Ora, plus a string of her own. Next up:...She’s written hits for Lizzo and Rita Ora, plus a string of her own. Next up: an album she wrote with fans while on lockdown in LANineteen years post-Pop Idol, there is not much left to demystify about the way pop music is made. Fans follow the industry’s movements as obsessively as football supporters do the Premier League; songwriters and producers have their own followings. There are podcasts where artists explain a song’s path from genesis to completion. And yet, watching Charli XCX handwrite lyrics live on Instagram over the past few weeks, straight from her brain to her notebook to thousands of viewers, felt like a borderline masochistic degree of exposure – the equivalent of me livestreaming my way through every sentence of this piece. I’d rather walk down the street naked.On 6 April, XCX – 27-year-old Cambridge-born Charlotte Aitchison – announced she was making an entire album, How I’m Feeling Now, while in lockdown at home in Los Angeles. She would share every step: lyric-writing and video-shooting; progress-stalling allergic reactions; tearful late-night Instagram confessions that she thinks she expects too much of her collaborators (later deleted). Fans were given carte blanche to give feedback and contribute visuals. “Sometimes it’s nerve-racking,” she says, when I ask if this amount of openness makes her feel vulnerable. “Other times bad comments will sway me, but I need to roll with the punches. If people don’t like it, it’s OK. The idea is to have some kind of interesting tension, to make the music feel different, and representative of the time that we’re in.” Continue reading...