We had the honor of chatting with influential EDM brand owner of We Rave You, Yotam Dov, about his roots, the history of the brand and more! See how our conversation went down.
In this exclusive interview, We Rave You CEO & Founder Yotam Dov shares his deep connection with electronic music and how it has shaped his career in the industry. From his early days listening to influential artists like The Prodigy and Daft Punk, to starting We Rave You as a Facebook page in 2012, Yotam takes us on a journey of how he built the successful brand that it is today. He also highlights what sets We Rave You apart from other music and dance websites, and how technology and digital platforms are used to enhance the user experience. Yotam gives us some insight on how We Rave You select the music and DJs featured on the website and how they balance between what people would like to consume and what people needs to discover.
Going back to your roots, could you tell us a bit about your connection with electronic music? Which artists have had a big influence on you when you were a young child growing up?
“I’ve been living and breathing electronic music at a very young age, artists like The Prodigy, Fatboy Slim, Moby, Underworld, The Chemical Brothers & Daft Punk are among the artists I grew up listening to frequently and had a major impact on me, attracting me to explore the electronic music world. I remember watching Daft Punk’s ‘Around The World’ at MTV and The Prodigy’s ‘Firestarter’, these video clips and music blew my mind and I wanted more, but it was at an early stage of the internet and it wasn’t as easy as today to find or educate yourself. However, the more I dived into private forums and communities I knew I fell in love.”
Can you tell us a bit about the history of We Rave You and how you got started in the industry?
“It all started when I was in Mexico, Costa Rica & Panama for a 2 month trip in early 2012 after I got released from the Army. I always used to be up to date with the latest electronic music as I’ve been living and breathing electronic music since a young age, back in early 2012, the whole ‘EDM bubble’ was still in early stage, but I was very well educated, every night we used to meet new friends and go out and I was in charge of ‘the vibe & music’, I saw how people excited were to hear this music which was new to them, and I said to myself, I’m sure there will be a lot more who would be interested in listening to the music I like, I came back home, opened a Facebook page and the rest is history.”
What sets We Rave You apart from other music and dance websites?
“We, and as I mean we that’s me and an incredible, passionate team next to me; don’t like to look at this as ‘We Rave You vs. other outlets’, we look at We Rave You as a brand – therefore we always try to innovate, upgrade and push boundaries with every single thing we do. The more we progress the more opportunities flowing in and for me, it’s all about trying to think outside the box and do stuff which aren’t the ‘regular’ and ‘obvious’ expectation from a dance music outlet.
We’ve been throwing live events and residencies at some of the world’s biggest clubs, stage hosts, branching out to work with gaming and tech companies on multiple projects, building communities and gathering music producers through our We Rave You Tech and much more!
We recently did our very first b2b event in Amsterdam during ADE where we hosted over a thousand attendees in an all inclusive, invited only cocktail event and it was mind-blowing. Counting these successes and reaching new milestones is the most satisfying thing for me. We always think of We Rave You is more than a dance music outlet, but as a brand, an umbrella of diverse activities.”
How do you select the music and DJ’s featured on the website?
“There’s a balance between what people would like to consume and what people needs to discover, our WhatsApp group chat is very active, we always put stuff there weather it’s breaking news or music from either big artists or aspiring producers so we try to cover what we think people will like and ofcourse make sure to deliver the news, latest music from the more known artists, we give more space on our Spotify playlists, Artists to watch and release selections on both our website and magazine.”
How does We Rave You use technology and digital platforms to enhance the experience for its users?
“It feels like there’s a balance between all mediums at We Rave You. if you would like to consume great video content with focus on live shows and experience, you go to our Instagram page, if you would like to consume in-depth and comprehensive editorials you read our monthly magazine, if you would like to be up to date with anything related to music production you go to the We Rave You Tech.
A major focus we have is to create original content on every aspect, whether readable or watchable. It’s very challenging but it’s necessary for us to step up as a brand.”
How do you see the future of dance and electronic music evolving, and how does We Rave You plan to stay ahead of the curve?
“Always be innovative and be out of our comfort zones. The more I feel like the processes become repetitive and the daily work does not involve tasks regarding big projects, this is when the alarm is beeping above my head. I also give creative freedom to my team and responsibility for people to feel that they are part of the bigger picture. I always listen to my team’s ideas and feedback and it’s crucial as some people tend to see things differently, therefore keeping an open mind is a beneficial thing for a growing brand.
We always analyse the processes, set new projects, be proactive and maintain what is good and working and improve what isn’t. When we reflect back in December and be like “Wow, we’ve done quite a lot this year” is when I know that we did it right. When we design the Highlights of the year presentation for our partners and clients and I see the final document and I feel proud, that’s when I know we’ve done it right.
The key is to be consistent to keep the brand stable and push boundaries with new concepts and projects to grow it. And with a winning team everything is possible.”
How do you balance promoting up-and-coming artists with featuring established acts?
“It’s a tricky thing, we try to balance between all the different platforms we have, ranging from Spotify, Instagram, YouTube to our Website and Magazine. In a world of algorithms you have to balance between what is performing so the brand will constantly be on the feeds of the readers but also give opportunity to artists and share the love for music, which is a core reason to why I started this whole brand.
So we have our Artists to Watch round-ups, Spotify playlists, we feature music that we heard on some of our Instagram Reels and sometimes when we have a debate on if something is worth featuring or not we just put it out on our socials as a test, which is fun!
Bottom line we try to balance and prioritize between the heart and the business side, sometimes one side gets more attention and vice versa.”
Can you discuss any challenges you’ve faced as the owner of We Rave You and how you’ve overcome them?
“There are always challenges, for example maintaining a good relationship and communication between the team members, whether if there’s a disagreement on certain subjects, then to be able to make bold decisions yet to respect the team members, to be an ear to listen and understanding as much as possible is the way to overcome such challenges. People want to feel valued and appreciated and that’s the main priority for me.
Another challenge which might be more on the personal level is that the perception of We Rave You is that it’s an established brand and I feel like we’ve just started, trying to push boundaries while still feeling like it’s all unbalanced is a challenge for me personally, the need to feel a solid ground while knowing this whole business is dynamic is frightening sometimes, and you need to constantly be motivated to be able to execute new ideas and projects. I guess just working on automatic is how to deal with these fears and try to form projects which will ensure the stability and growth of the brand.”
Can you tell us about any future plans for expanding or rebranding We Rave You?
“This year is shaping up to be (if not the) one of the biggest and most exciting years we’ve had so far. There are a lot of things in the background, first and foremost we’re expanding the team with new roles, we recently had a new strategic and business advisor joining the team and it’s one of the best things we’ve done to kick off this year.
We confirmed 10 shows already with the brand including a 5-date residency in Croatia with one of the hottest dance music acts right now. Both We Rave You and Bootshaus are going at full force for another b2b event at ADE 2023. We’re going to launch ‘The Essential Vol.2’ catalog this year with We Rave You Tech and we’re currently in discussion with a sports team on a big live crossover event, this is definitely going to be a huge milestone for us.
It’s insane as we’re still in January and it feels like we already tripled the amount of activities we’ve had in 2022 and we got an entire year to go. I’m personally extremely motivated and thankful for having such a strong team besides me because this is definitely not a one man show.”
Soundrive Music has established itself as the premier global source for all things EDM. With a reach in over 125 countries, it has quickly become a trusted and valued source for electronic dance music news, reviews, interviews, and features for DJs, artists, and labels. In addition to its comprehensive coverage of the EDM scene, Soundrive Music also offers a platform for up-and-coming DJs and artists to showcase their talent. Through its various events and collaborations with leading industry players, it provides opportunities for new talent to gain exposure and grow their careers.
Whether it’s breaking news, brand new music, or in-depth interviews with the biggest names in the industry, the Soundrive Music is dedicated to delivering the latest and most comprehensive information about the world of electronic dance music. Soundrive Music’s headquarters are located in South Africa with offices in Sweden and USA, founded on April 19, 2015 in Helsingborg, Sweden by Jacques Maurice Julie and Darren Johnathan Bezuidenhout.