“Exploring the Success of Dua Lipa’s ‘Future Nostalgia’ Campaign and Why Her Team Isn’t Slowing Down Anytime Soon”

Tom Corson, the co-chairman and COO of Warner Records, has acknowledged that Dua Lipa has made history by releasing an album during quarantine. Being the first major pop star to do so, she has been hailed as a pioneer in the music industry.

When news broke out that Dua Lipa’s second album, Future Nostalgia, had leaked online in the week of March 21, she was scheduled to fly to New York for her appearance as a musical guest on Saturday Night Live. However, due to the ongoing pandemic, Lipa was instead at home in London, emotionally sharing on Instagram Live about her decision to release her project a week earlier than planned. Uncertain whether she was doing the right thing, she hoped that her album would bring happiness, smiles, and dancing to her fans, and that they would be proud of her. Although there were discussions about postponing the release, Wendy Ong, president of TaP Management and TaP Records (Lipa’s management team), said that they collectively agreed with Dua’s decision to share the music and go against what other artists were doing by pushing their albums back.

Ong discusses how many big-name artists delayed album releases during the pandemic, including Lady Gaga’s Chromatica, Haim’s Women In Music Pt. III and Luke Bryan’s Born Here Live Here Die Here. However, not all artists followed suit, with The Weeknd debuting at number one on the Billboard 200. With less competition, Dua Lipa was able to release Future Nostalgia during quarantine and became the first major pop star to do so, earning praise from Warner Records’ co-chairman and COO Tom Corson. Despite having to rethink promotional strategies due to the pandemic, Lipa’s teams at TaP, Warner, and Creative Artists Agency were able to adapt quickly and execute a successful album launch.

Reacting in the moment was necessary, but it wasn’t the only factor that contributed to Dua Lipa’s success. Her friend and manager, Ben Mawson of TaP Music, points out that she has been well-established around the world for years with numerous hits. Furthermore, the campaign for her latest album, Future Nostalgia, had already been in motion for almost a year before its release. “Don’t Start Now” was released in October 2019, and Lipa performed the song at the MTV Europe Music Awards in November of that year. By February 2020, the single had already reached number one on the Billboard Pop Songs chart. Despite the prolonged process of releasing an album, Lipa maintained visibility through virtual performances and promotional activities. She appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and The Late Late Show With James Corden, released an animated music video for “Break My Heart,” and even co-hosted a virtual prom on iHeartRadio stations. Additionally, her social media presence remains active and engaging, featuring nostalgic throwbacks, promotional materials, and spontaneous glimpses into her life in quarantine.

According to Light, Dua Lipa has a strong social media presence that keeps fans engaged. Her album, Future Nostalgia, has been successful on the Billboard charts, with lead single “Don’t Start Now” peaking at No. 2. Despite the challenges of releasing an album during a pandemic, Lipa faced it like a pro and proved that it can be done. However, Light warns that it’s not a one-size-fits-all model and that it’s important to consider the artist and their material before following Lipa’s lead. Lipa’s team had the right pieces in place, including radio, which helped secure airplay for her unique sound.

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