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What Every Entrepreneur Can Learn From The 4 Richest Hip Hop Moguls

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While many hip-hop artists are quick to jump on the mic and talk about all the money they’ve made, none have been able to attain the success (and salary) that the following businessmen/rappers have. Their success wasn’t all due to their lyrical abilities—they all possess very business-savvy traits found in many Fortune 500 CEO’S.

We can all afford to take a lesson or two from these four formidable hip hop artists who took their empires from the studio to the “C level”.

 

 

 

 

Lessons From The 4 Richest Hip Hop Moguls

 

 

Sean “Diddy” Combs Networth: $580 Million

Diversification

Diddy Hip Hop EntrepreneurThe rapper-actor-producer-designer-entrepreneur Sean “Diddy” Combs, seems to make a few million every time he changes his name. He’s gone under the names Puffy, Puff Daddy, P. Diddy, Diddy Dirty Money, and finally, Diddy.

But Diddy (as I’ll refer to him from now on) has come a long way from his days as a party promoter at Howard University. After signing the late Notorious B.I.G. to his newly formed Bad Boy Records, his career skyrocketed, first as a producer/rapper and then as an entrepreneur.

Diddy’s empire, Bad Boy Entertainment Worldwide, owns and operates Bad Boy Records, restaurants in NYC and Atlanta, numerous clothing and fragrance lines, and helped turn Ciroc vodka into the second ultra-premium vodka in the world.

Lesson Learned Whether you are investing your time or money—diversify, diversify, diversify! Diddy didn’t stop (can’t stop, won’t stop) with music, so find multiple markets or tracks to invest in!

 

 

50 Cent’s Networth: $260 Million

Branding

50 Cent Net Worth EntrepreneurAfter growing up in poverty, being shot nine times, and having his debut album shelved, it seemed the 50 Cent just couldn’t catch a break. After hearing about his violent past, no record company would have him in their offices. In fact, it’s rumored that 50 Cent wrote a few songs for Diddy until the mogul saw 50 carried a gun with him to the studio.

Finally, 50 Cent caught a break when Dr. Dre and Eminem gave him a shot.

50 quickly released hit after hit and topped the charts. But it seemed that just being a rap superstar wasn’t enough. Instead of endorsing brands, 50 Cent looked to break new ground. While just putting one’s name on a product for a flat fee was a standard practice, almost all of his deals included equity in the product on top of an endorsement fee.

Some of these deals included his own clothing line, a shoe line with Reebok, books, movies, and video games—who needs to rap? But his biggest paycheck came from an unsuspecting source when Coca-Cola acquired Vitamin Water. 50 Cent, who owned a 5% stake in the company, walked away with $200 million—10 times as much as he had made selling records.

50 Cent now owns SK Energy Drink that is taking over the Energy Shot market.

Lesson Learned: 50 Cent came into the industry with a bad stigma attached to him. When he finally got a chance to make his mark, he put his name on everything and it paid off. Put your business’s name on all your merchandise—everything from shirts and umbrellas to golf items and custom sunglasses can be branded by companies like Pinnacle Promotions—as you never know what’s going to be the true moneymaker in the end.

 

 

Dr. Dre’s Networth: $360 Million

Talent Acquisition

drdreMost recently, Dr. Dre made headlines (and about $150M) with his Beats by Dre Headphone line. The headphones have been endorsed by Lebron James, Lil Wayne, and college students on campuses across the world. But before the doc got his hand in business, he was known as one of the best scouts for talent in the industry.

As a producer and rapper, he is contributed with kick starting the careers of some of the biggest names in hip-hop: 50 Cent, Kendrick Lamar, Snoop Dogg (aka Snoop Lion), and Eminem. But it seems that the 48 year-old is focusing less on looking for upcoming rappers, and more on finding the vice presidents of his next start up.

Dre and business partner Jimmy Iovine have donated $70 million dollars to the University of Southern California to create a new degree which will blend marketing, business, product design and development, and liberal arts. The first class of students are set to begin the new degree in 2014 and may be en route to becoming music moguls themselves.

In anarticle detailing the contribution, Dre says “this is the biggest, most exciting and probably the most important thing that I’ve done in my career.

Lesson Learned: Always be on the lookout for fresh, new talent. Whether you use local head hunters or websites such to find talent, bringing new ideas into your conference room can be the difference between winning over new clients and moving into a studio apartment.

 

 

Jay Z’s Networth: $500 Million

Networking

Jay-ZJay said it best himself—he’s not a businessman, he’s a business, man! While he may not be the richest hip-hop mogul, he has definitely become the face of the industry. Before blowing up as a face of a genre, Jay created Roc-A-Fella Records and clothing line. Not long after, he began to dive into other industries. His business ventures range from hospitality (40/40 Club), live concert promotions (Live Nation/Roc Nation), sports management (Roc Nation Sports), and at one point was a part owner of the Brooklyn Nets.

However, Jay’s real strength is his power of networking. Year after year, he has shown his ability to connect with musicians from different genres, CEOs from various industries, and even the leader of the free world, President Barack Obama. What other musician do you know that texts with the President?

Lesson Learned: You’re only as good as the company you keep. Jay recognized this as his music career started to turn into a business career. You can be the savviest businessman/businesswoman, but if no one knows, you’ll get nowhere. Connecting with likeminded individuals and joining industry discussions on LinkedIn could be the key to landing your dream job, securing investments for your venture, or connecting with the perfect partner.

 

Checkout this interesting graph of Jay-Zs Estimated Brand Value

JayZ - Estimated Brand Value

As album sales continue to drop, the music industry is becoming less and less enticing. While some artists seem to be only relying on their musical ability, others are looking elsewhere to retain their wealth. Whether you look up to 50 Cent’s branding marvels or the networking skills of Jay Z, these artists are prime examples of savvy rappers turned business moguls.

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8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Yvonne Neuland

    Sep 30, 2013 at 12:33 am

    All four of these men definitely have an amazing insight on how to build a business empire.

  2. Avatar

    Dionne

    Sep 1, 2013 at 8:11 am

    They will be billionaires in the next 10 or 20 years. There is no sign of them stopping to try to become more and more succesful.

  3. Avatar

    RP

    Aug 31, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    I hope 50 Cent’s involvement in “Hang with” (stock symbol: MEDL) rubs off on the stock price.

  4. Avatar

    Brady

    Aug 31, 2013 at 4:44 am

    In addition to working smart, these guys work HARD. I’ve actually had a chance to meet 50 Cent on a couple of occasions, and that guy is non-stop. I got the vibe that even when he’s not working, he’s thinking about and planning his next moves.

  5. Avatar

    Tiya

    Aug 29, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    If the streets were to give degrees I bet these guys would have graguated with PHDs in streetconomics

  6. Avatar

    bob fansi

    Aug 29, 2013 at 8:55 am

    my money goes on drake

  7. Avatar

    Morgan Tombler

    Aug 28, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    Thanks for reading Dhanha, glad you agree! Any idea who the next rapper to transition from the booth to the conference room? My money is on one of the A$AP Mob.

  8. Avatar

    Dhanha Bien-Aime

    Aug 27, 2013 at 9:56 pm

    This is to the T. I have always felt this how these hip hop moguls have made the mark. Kudos to you.

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Success Advice

5 Things You Can Learn From The 5am Club by Robin Sharma

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It has been said by Robin Sharma, “5 AM is the time of least distraction, highest human glory, and greatest peace.” This also happens to be the central idea or the core value he has discussed in his book, ‘The 5 Am Club.’ Speaking of early mornings, at what time do you wake up? Are you annoyed by the fact that you wake up on the edge of time and then rush to work in haste? 

The life lessons put forth by The 5 AM Club are exactly the learning and motivation you need to challenge your complacency. In your race against time, you may not have the time to read this fabulous book. So, we have summed up the key book’s takeaways for your convenience.

1. The vigor of waking up early

This is what the book’s most fundamental advice to everyone is. Waking up at 5 am every day can work wonders to avert failures and make success a natural habit. When we wake up at 5 am, we have more time on our hands than others. Besides, this is when we have minimum interruptions and maximum powerfulness of the mind. 

To add, the early morning peace is priceless! You can schedule your most important tasks of the day between 5am, and 8am. This book teaches us in the simplest way, how we can train our mind and strengthen it to deliver the highest productivity by waking up early. This energy that you have when you wake up in the morning and the few additional hours in your day are what serve as perfect ingredients for success.

“The secret to productivity is simplicity.” – Robin Sharma

2. The power of finding the right balance in life

The book talks about a precious lesson of finding the right balance within. We often talk about the need for mindfulness and achieving the right mindset to perceive things. But this book goes a few steps ahead of our usual approach to life. It highlights the vitality of mindset and introduces the concepts of heartset, healthset, and soulset.

These terms may seem new, but they are self-explanatory. The idea of heartset endorses the essentialness of emotional stability and well-being. Next, the perspective of healthset indicates the need to look after physical health. At last, soulset is an attribute of spirituality. As explained in this book, success prospects can be enhanced big time by achieving the right balance between these internal virtues.

3. The iconic 20/20/20 modus operandi

What is the first thing you will do if you start waking up at 5 am every day? Did you ever spare a thought about it? This book has the answer to this question, and you will be convinced that it is a great way to begin your day!. The author suggests that you should split the first hour of the day into three equal parts of 20 minutes each.

In the first 20 minutes of the day, you should prioritize your physical fitness and exercise. In the next 20 minutes, you should energize your soul and spirit via self-reflection and soulful meditation. This will prepare you for the rest of the day and will enable you to bolster your commitment and focus. In the last 20 minutes of the first hour, you should read and learn. But what are you going to read about in those 20 minutes? Read about successful people and their inspiring journeys to the pinnacle of success.

4. The significance of a proper sleep schedule

In this book, there is a mention of ‘a ferocious global sleep recession’, which is intriguing and enlightening. It hints at the state of sleep deprivation that this world is sinking into gradually. We often associate success and hard work with the notion of staying up all night and testing our endurance beyond limits. But that is not the right approach to accomplishing success, or rather, it is a flawed methodology.

Sometimes even if we do not have any critical work, we keep whiling our night time on social media or television. What are we gaining from it is the real question, and I am afraid the answer is nothing! We learn from this book that it is critical to look after your sleep cycle and start your day at 5 am afresh. Sleep and rest are indispensable for mental and physical well-being, or your productivity will decline.

“If you want to have the results only 5% have, you must be willing to do and think like only 5% do and think.” – Robin Sharma

5. The art of evolving

The book sheds light on the need to be spiritual and master self-reflection. However, do you realize the purpose that the routine of reflection each morning serves? The idea is to keep learning, keep reflecting on the mistakes and keep evolution an ongoing process. You should evolve every day and strive to be a better version of yourself every day. So, one of your primary goals after waking up should be to reflect on your actions and missed opportunities of the previous day.

To recapitulate, The 5 AM Club is a must-read book if you are a passionate reader. It has the prowess and charm to refurbish your perception of life altogether. Even if you cannot read the book for some reason, make sure you incorporate the above key takeaways into your life. By starting your day at 5 am, you can rediscover your lost soul and enthusiasm, and you would not have complaints to make about the lack of time. If you can own your mornings, you can go places on the ladder of success, for excuses are only for those who are not committed to their goals.

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Prepare Yourself for Prosperity With These 6 Success Habits

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Success stories don’t come from naturally successful people. They come from ordinary people with starry eyes and big dreams who stayed true to their end goal and consistently put in the work. They are just like you and me. What sets them apart is their mindset — a success mindset. (more…)

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How to Overcome the Emotional Rollercoaster of Success

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If you’re reading this, I’ll let you in on a little secret: you’re a human being. You have feelings, emotions, beliefs, complexity, and a mind that’s always racing. Your feelings at any given moment in your life have the power to affect what you do and how consistently you do it. (more…)

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5 Important Choices that Make Life Worth Living and Success Taste Sweeter

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As we start another year, you’re probably thinking about your life goals, dreams, aspirations, and what you want to accomplish. We know that New Year’s resolutions have gotten a bad reputation because most people lose focus after the first few months and the first signs of resistance. (more…)

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