Fadia Quader has worked as a stylist, talent booker and manager in her diverse career in the music industry. In recent times, he has focused on music partnerships with projects that come up with “big ideas” for everything from brand / talent matchmaking to event production. At this Co.Lab, Fadia discusses how to build a strong social media presence and discusses the importance of finding the right brand partner.
Spotify for Artists: What does your creative path look like? How did you get to where you are now?
Fadia Quader: I actually started in the fashion industry first. I was a stylist in Atlanta, Georgia. I’ve worked with a group of artists, e.g. Janelle Moni, As a fashion buyer and stylist. Then somehow, I got involved in music on a different level and I started managing a group in Atlanta. I had to learn to be a preacher and an agent and a show booker. And when Atlanta Venues didn’t want to book my talent, I started booking my own shows. That’s how I started Showcase in Atlanta. In fashion, we predict many trends, which I was able to apply to artists booking for my showcase. That’s how I started to identify who I was next in music.
When it comes to trend forecasting, are there any signs or indications that an artist is blowing you away?
Yes, it’s a combination of aesthetic, marketing and great, timeless music. But if your brand and aesthetics aren’t strong, it’s hard to find across the line.
Do you think an artist needs to be both a music creator and a content creator to be successful in today’s art scene?
I think artists are more than what they need, not just content creators, great storytellers. If you have an iPhone or DSLR, now everyone is a content creator. But how can you own your narrative? How can you be a storyteller? How can you identify yourself as someone who knows yourself and at the same time creates quality content?
Do you have any suggestions on how artists should come to their social media?
I think the most important thing is that you can be as authentic as possible socially and in the days of highly produced content – it’s no longer effective. Everyone has a social account. You have a drop of rain in a rain forest right now. So how are you going to do a splash? It will take your time to figure it out. Every artist is completely different but it starts with creating a thousand fans who are committed to you and those thousands of fans who will be like your army and keep moving all the time.
You also have the experience of brand partnership. How should today’s emerging artists move towards partnership?
Yes, after Atlanta I moved to New York, where I worked at the complex where it was my job to identify talent for brand partnerships, campaigns and events. This made me create the first influential program out there. I then went on to do a brand partnership at Def Jam where I worked with artists Big Sean And Who is Alessia?. I provide all the context to say, I think it’s really important to know yourself as an artist before you merge with a brand. Because once you dive in with a brand you are identified. So you need to make sure that it is a brand that you want to be associated with in the long run.
If you could give artists today an important piece of advice on how to build their visual identity, what would it be?
Start knowing exactly who you are. Stick to your story and narrative and own it 100 percent. Create an audience that will travel or die for you. And invest in your fans, because they will carry you when you off-cycle. They continue the conversation.
-Spotify for artists