If you haven’t watched the Netflix special featuring Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine and their rise to fame, fortune and success, go watch it and come back to us. It is brilliant.


Not only does the program showcase fantastic storytelling technique-the emotional hook, the R&B/Hip Hop nostalgia, the American ‘rags to riches’ dream, it also bursts with insider knowledge, glam, bling, the Hollywood fantasy and the tragedy of life, on top of some gorgeous shooting and editing skills; the show is also a masterclass in marketing.


Everything about this special is marketing. Netflix took a relatively unknown man to the general public, Jimmy Iovine and inserted him into a story with the top names in the music industry, on one of the most viewed programming sites in the world. The show categorically demonstrates how to be a marketing mastermind, whilst being an example of marketing mastery itself.


It’s Marketingception!


So what did they do well?


  1. The Story

Google tells us that “Straight Outta Compton” grossed an international total of $201 million. Straight Outta Compton tells a story familiar to the public of the 80s and 90s and a legend to anyone thereafter. The story of the Boyz in the Hood’s rise to fame, out of the ashes of oppressive poverty and racial divide was one that everyone wanted to listen to and experience.

‘The Defiant Ones’ roots are no doubt tapping into this same audience as Dre’s presence brings with it a certain expectation of rap battles, hardship, tragedy and money. Dr. Dre’s story is something that everyone wants to know about. He has led a troubled life but also an extraordinary one.

And everyone loves an extraordinary story.


So, the scene is set. This is going to be a story of extraordinary people and more impressive feats still.


We get flashes of big stars; Eminem, Gwen Stafani, Music Executives, CEOs, Puff Paddy, Kendrick Lamar.


This is expensive company.


Next we get to know Jimmy Iovine. They hook us in by presenting this guy as important to Dre. Possibly a bigger personality than Dre.

And then they take us on a journey to find out why, because everyone wants to know why a bald headed Italian from Jersey is so important to the legendary Dr. Dre.


Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine


And the rest writes itself. Their stories are told separately until they entwine and reach the conclusion of this special. The stories of hardship, poverty, big personalities, risk, money, family and death; they are all presented well, strategically and chronologically.


However, the greatest achievement is the honesty. Here you have two men, bigger than life itself, more successful than you could ever imagine, being vulnerable and raw in front of a camera. It is powerful, it connects and it is human.


  1. Production and editing


Shots in quick succession move from one scene to another, one protagonist to another in such a way that it feels like a conversation rather than an interview. There are dozens of people interviewed during this program and the experience of it feels like a group of friends sitting around a table cutting in and telling different bits of the same story.


The obviously high production of the episodes are made beautifully relatable with use of handheld camera shots, no fuss sets, unscripted scenes and outtakes coupled with behind the scenes processes such as make up. It is like you are there yourself talking to these characters and they are speaking directly to you.


  1. Marketing


The entire special has a distinct marketing experience, for everyone involved but notably ‘The Defiant Ones’ subtly positions Jimmy Iovine (whose net worth is estimated at $800 million), an unknown character to the ordinary man, as an expert figure and as someone we should look up to and admire. Which he surely is, after all that he has achieved.


Beats by Dr. Dre is the product at the centre of this program, around which the narrators conclude their story. The viewer is struck with an urge to buy the headphones after watching the show.




NEW! Beats by Dyjaho!


Not only that, but the energetic combination of Iovine and Dre, make you want to achieve great things, think outside the box and expand on ideas for marketing and life.


Netflix truly hit it out of the park with this one. Fantastic story and genius marketing strategy. It would be verrrrry interesting to see the sales of all mentioned albums, records and headphones before and after this program.


Have you seen it yet? What did you make of the show?  Am I just getting too fan girly?