Before we dive deep into the topic, ask yourself the following questions :
If you are an established worship leader, have you faced challenges in branding yourself?
Does the word branding sound easy to you, but when you start, you don’t get the expected results?
Have you ever branded yourself?
Are you a brand?
Are you a human being ?
Are you a spirit?
Do you have an identity?
Do you have name?
The first thing you need to know is; The first element of your brand is your identity.
The definition of your identity is your existence. And by virtue of the fact that you exist, it means you have an identity and because you have an identity, you have a brand.
Now, if branding is made easily achievable, will you be happy?
How to build a brand
As a true worship leader, there is one thing you need to change;
The dynamic of your music from emotional entertainment, to a soul winning and soul keeping tool because you are a minister of God.
Eartly music connects with you at the level of your emotion.
A minister simply means you are using music as a tool to preach the gospel. So when yiu sing anything, it has to be the word of God. Which means that Jesus is the base of your.
Anything you are singing as a worship leader, must be based on the finished work of Christ on the cross. As a worship leader, you should know the difference between Godly and earthly sorrow.
Worship that is not of God provokes earthly sorrow, meaning people will cry under your ministration but you will not see any transformation in their lives.
During this type if ministration, you will think God is using you but it is the devil using you instead.
At this time, you are meeting the people at the time of their earthly needs, very far from their spiritual needs. Hence when you are singing, they are crying but as soon as you are done, they continue with their same lifestyle .
So, as a teacher of the word of God, you must watch out In other not to lead people astray. Your gospel must spread the truth and the undiluted gospel of Jesus Christ. Even if no one is buying your song, stay glued to the true side.
3 steps to look at as far as your music and brand is concerned
- You cannot brand Jesus, your assignment is to use music to create awareness in the world about who Jesus is.
- You are different from secular artist, those people do not need to work because satan is all in their business. As a gospel artist, what you are sending outside is spirit, many obstacles will come against it. Hence, your brand is not in the physical sense of the word but spiritual.
Make no mistake, branding books will tell you that; in order to create a successful brand , do these things: define the mission of your music, define yoiur ideal audience, the style etc. but this is not really what should define your brand as a gospel artist.
Most secular artist, define their brand around a physical appearance (clothes, hair cuts, fashion trends etc) . You minister unto souls, people age, not souls, in other words, there is no need focusing on style in order to brand.
When a secular person sets up a brand, it has an age demographic. So during a particular year for instance, they can target between the ages of 5- 15 . after these ones pass, your style changes to fit the next generation and so on.
But as a gospel minister, you are ministering to souls that transcend generations. Every note you send out, God keeps that music until the end of time. Hence, gospel music has no expiry date.
- branding has things to do with your brand, genre, and perception but that is not all there is to it. Being a worship leader is not traditional, it is the biggest ministry that God can entrust in the hand of a human being. The judgement of music ministers will be terrible.
Your music is the expression of your personality. There is no product that can impact human beings like gospel music. Music has a spiritual impact on those that listen to it, that is why no one can go a day without music.
Furthermore, we all want to rise, but ask yourself; in the midst of other artists, why or how should I rise? Why you?
Learn what you must do in order to get to where you want to be. Like preachers, evangelist, worship leaders must be original.
Nothing under the earth is new, everything that is happening has been done before. There is no music that you can sing today that has not been done before. But there will always remain one thing which is unique and that is you.
You are specially made. Your music is a direct reflection of that uniqueness in you.
Who is the audience of a worship leader?
There is no limit to the audience of the worship leader. Who ever told you that “ your target audience” delete it, because your audience is every living soul. Before being a worship leader, you are called by God as a minister of God.
In the normal ife, they will tell you in order to brand, have a visual representation, do a logo etc but there is, more.
Music is very abstract, it is something you cannot quantify.
There is a unique sound that identifies as your identity and your job as a worship leader, is to find that sound. That’s why a worship leader will have 100 songs, but 1 song will come one day , that the world will know you for.
Music is complicated, even you musicians cannot fully understand. Music is a language, spirit, music is in everything.
Even when you walk, snore, eat , you generate music. What God has given you is too big for you to play with it.
branding gospel music from a physical perspective is very challenging because it brings so much power. And your task is to harness this unbelievable power, that is expressed through the medium of sound and to synchronize it and represent it in a visual content for the consumption of your audience.
Gospel music is so empowering, powerfull and dominating in the minds of those that are listening but it comes out as a sound.
As a minister , you have the challenge to harness the power of that sound, for power without purpose is useless. You want someone to listen to your song and have visibility of the kingdom in their mind. What you see you believe very easily .
Many people will tell you to match your brand to the sound of your music, but your brand is jesus. So in every genre, Jesus can be found. In other words, you can still use bikutsi, rap, pop etc to represent Jesus.
Your goal is be authentic to create a brand that matches your music and the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Be honest to yourself
Have you ever found yourself in the point of lack of focus fear, doubt, emptiness, resentment, indecision , frustration etc. if any of these things have happened to you, it means you have not yet found your purpose.
If you are not yet aware of your purpose, it becomes a cause of struggles in your life. Purpose drives a man. A worship leader that has purpose, lives from inside to out but he that has no purpose lives from outside to in.
If you have no purpose guiding you, you will dance to the tune of social, emotional, and mentorship pressure but to the tune of Jesus, you will be in rebellion.
And If your purpose is for the salvation of souls, then you will think on how you write those lyrics. To achieve your purpose, strife to be totally original and avoid copying.
You are no longer concerned on how other people sing or dance when you have found purpose and your originality. When that song is of Jesus, souls will be won and that will be for the glory of God. Jesus is your brand. Start with Him and end with Him.
A music minister must spend his time in the place of worship. The symbol of your brand is the time you spend with God.
The pictures you design , in those physical things you are already the best. If you were manifesting physical things you would have been known. But in the light of spirituality , God is saying come into a place of worship and a new song will be downloaded into your spirit.
Message Ministered by Bro Julius during the NWLC 2020