I wonder if Justin Bieber’s marketing and production team ever read the news beyond the current chatter about their teenage star.  I would love to know what they made of this morning’s juxtaposition of articles on the BBC about young Mr Bieber keeping his very young audience waiting for nearly two hours at London’s O2 Arena last night and a rather interesting piece about Insight Marketing which explore some of the techniques used by some advertisers and companies to deliver added value about their products and services.

Let’s get real here — Mr Bieber’s market is made up of young teenagers let’s be generous and say the 10/20 age group.  The show was scheduled to start at 8.30 pm — already a late start for the lower end of that age bracket.  To not arrive on stage until 10.20 pm was a disgrace.  Teenagers have short attention spans for starters; being that late is rude, being that late when you are charging teenagers — or their parents 125 pounds a ticket is bad business.

Holding your concert in a venue that is difficult to get to, that has poor public car parking, and public transport links that stop running at 10.50pm was not really clever either.

Let us apply some of the Insight marketing techniques to the above scenario. It may not be “Rock and Roll”  but here goes anyway.

First, the venue should be more accessible, car park and public transport friendly.
The concert should start earlier — 7.00pm would be more suitable for this age group and should allow some leeway for Mr Bieber’s petulance and penchant for arriving late.

Explore the concept of a family ticket so mum and dad can go too and not panic when their children are not at pre-arranged pick up points on time. I know a lot of parents will not thank me for this one — but enduring teenage screams for 90 minutes is much better than the cold panic that grips your stomach when your teenager is not there to meet you at the appointed time and place.

Play something other than Michael Jackson when you are keeping children as young as this waiting.

Remember that you are playing to teenagers; remember that most of these tickets were bought by doting parents who will vote with their wallets and say NO the next time around.

Then, perhaps, you will enjoy the enduring success of such greats as Leonard Cohen, who I was privileged to see last November in Lisbon, who delivered a four hour set in a venue that has ample car parking, public transport available late into the night and who thanked US for honouring him with our presence.


  1. This is all over the news this morning. Two hours late. The arena, or Justin, has to pay a fine because the concert went past 11pm…

    Does he have any fanatical male fans — or is he entirely supported by teenage girls?

  2. That’s crazy! More crazy is that next concert around, the fans (teenaged girls) will beg and plead until they get to see him again!

    1. OR not – quite a few were obliged to leave to catch the last train out and left before seeing him …………… its not the first date on this tour he has been late for – but certainly the most significant.

  3. The arena are placing the ball and the potential fine in Justins court – I hope it is a very large one.

    I suspect his fan base is entirely teenage girls – something his team may be trying to correct by adding duets and “mash ups” with young female singers. He is due to perform in Lisbon in the near future and there is constant advertising for the concert , they have alrea\dy added an extra night due to extra demand .

    I know one thing for sure – if he is late here they will go home – just like they/we did when Stevie Wonder kept us waiting for over an hour and a half at midnight at Rock in Rio last year.

    1. I love the whole UK fine idea — it’s necessary and perfect and I hope Justin does have to pay it.

      These teenage heartthrobs usually don’t end well as they age. For Bieber to be bigger than his teens, he will have to find a way to bring men along for the ride. Justin Timberlake made it — but there was always a human element to him that made him accessible, and non-threatening, to male fans. Bieber doesn’t have that same grace.

  4. Trying to find out how much a potential fine might be …………. I hope it is a percentage of the box office rather than a flat rate. The Guardian says it will be small change – http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2013/mar/05/justin-bieber-late-show-twitter

    This is the latest on the BBC – I can see people getting angry enough to ask for refunds


    Lesson one Justin – respect your audience – they pay your living!

    I agreee with what you say about expanding his audience – I think first he may have to recover his current one !

    Mr Timberlake was nowhere near so arrogant or brash and garnered respect that way.

  5. This is too funny. I never used to like Justin Bieber all that much until I just listened to his music and not all the drama surrounding him. This, on the other hand, is absolutely unacceptable. In situations like this, you would have been better off rescheduling or refunding people their money.

    I also think that the idea about going through the 90 minutes of screaming instead of worrying about your children’s whereabouts when they don’t show up is a better idea. It also avoids the worry of when parents call and their children don’t pick up, not because they’re out doing wrong or because something happened, but because they’re enjoying themselves at a concert that started late.

  6. as Gordon says it is just crazy !

    a quote from the Daily Mail piece – “Hundreds of fans who left at 11:45pm – before Justin’s concert had even finished – had to squeeze through crowds of waiting parents at the entrance to the O2 who were braving freezing temperatures while waiting for their children.”

    There are very bleak photographs of the area around O2, with people stranded and freezing.

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