Those flying in for Super Bowl weekend in Atlanta can expect to be greeted by Quality Control, the local music company that savvily purchased prime display space at the airport and is sniping key areas in the city to the tune of more than 14,000 posters. QC, founded just five years ago by Pierre “P” Thomas and Kevin “Coach K” Lee (pictured), is home to Migos, Lil Yachty, City Girls, Lil Baby and, through a management consulting arrangement, Cardi B. The company was honored at Variety‘s “Hitmakers” event in Hollywood last fall for the tremendous strides it has made in not just breaking acts out of Atlanta, but shaping the sound of hip-hop globally.
Not surprisingly, the company’s acts are performing all over the city during Super Bowl week: On Thursday night, Migos, Lil Yachty and Lil Baby performed on a bill with Ludacris, Lil Jon and others for the Bud Light Music Fest; tonight Migos are performing with Diplo and Tiesto at Shaq’s Fun House; Cardi B is performing with Bruno Mars on Saturday, also as part of the Bud Light fest.
As for QC’s visibility this weekend and throughout the year, credit is due in no small part to Mr. Too Official, marketing manager for QC and CEO of Too Official Promotions, who spoke to Variety on Super Bowl weekend eve.
Whose idea were the welcome screens at the Atlanta airport?
It came from the whole QC marketing team, and our staff at the office.
What was the thinking behind it?
So that when people come to Atlanta, they know we’re the number one label. It’s really a reminder because [you see it] as soon as you get off the plane… And the reaction was crazy! … I hadn’t seen it and everybody started DMing and calling me about it. It was everywhere.
What would you say is Quality Control’s importance in Atlanta?
Artists who are really hustling and trying to get in the game, they look towards QC for motivation. We’re one of the labels where the CEO comes from the streets — ’cause everybody knows that P is from the streets. To see him successful and where he’s at, it’s a big motivation. And he’s straight out of Atlanta.
What are your feelings going into Super Bowl weekend as the eyes of many millions turn to Atlanta?
That’s a big thing. Yesterday, we ordered 14,000 posters so we about to flood Atlanta like no other. Freeways, streets, poles — you’re gonna see our brand everywhere. Each artist that we represent and manage — posters. Our advertising game is about to be crazy. It’s about to be the biggest weekend for people to know what our movement’s really about. They’re gonna see QC really runs Atlanta.
How do you balance traditional physical promotion with apps like Instagram and Facebook?
That’s where we started from. For two to three years, we always advertised like that. When Instagram and Facebook came, it was good for me to put content out but I always kept it grounded. No matter which show, when we do concerts, we print posters to give to the fans because they spend so much to [be there] — they gotta pay for drinks or for shirts, so we always do the posters to kind of give back.
How much does a Too Official guerrilla marketing campaign cost?
A real crazy Too Official guerrilla marketing campaign runs about 50, just rounding. That’s $50K, not 50 dollars.
Any thoughts on Travis Scott’s decision to perform during the halftime show despite cries to boycott out of respect to Colin Kaepernick?
No. I’m just praying that he does a good show, that he’ll be representative of all of us who don’t have a voice. Through all the hate, good energy conquers everything. I think he’s doing a good deed.