Selling Elvis in the Age of Instagram

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

Image source: Vegas.com Elvis never left the building after all. Seventeen years after his death, Elvis Presley remains one of the most lucrative names in show business. According to Forbes, he is the second wealthiest deceased celebrity, earning $55 million in 2013 through merchandising, licensing of his image, and his Graceland ...

TMZ: The Time Inc. of Fame Inc.

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

TMZ has transformed itself from everyone's favorite guilty pleasure to a powerhouse news reporting and entertainment brand. The multi-million dollar organization managed by Harvey Levin long ago shrugged off its image as a snarky Hollywood gossip site and by beating mainstream news organizations such as CNN at their own game. ...

Old bands, great brands shine in 2010

Friday, December 17th, 2010

There seems to be no end to the merchandising of so-called legacy rock stars, and 2010 was no exception: In February the ghost of Elvis returned to Las Vegas with the opening of Cirque du Soleil Viva ELVIS. The Rolling Stones owned the month of May with a heavily promoted re-issue of ...

Why we need Michael Jackson

Friday, June 26th, 2009

If the elections in Iran have brought out the best in Twitter, Michael Jackson has brought out the worst.  His death June 25 unleashed a torrent of morbid celebrity gawking that brought Twitter to its knees.  (Ironically his death will also give him a bigger career boost than anything he ...

Top 20 albums of all time?

Thursday, July 31st, 2008

Just what the world needs: another top 20 albums of all time list, courtesy of the Y! Radish Music Blog. This list is a bit different from the usual critical assessments because it seeks to be more objective and empirical, weighing factors such as album sales, "critical rating value" ...

These are the real thrillers

Friday, February 29th, 2008

Before Michael Jackson became a walking freak show, he gave the world Thriller, the perfect fushion of art, commerce, and marketing. On the 25th-anniversary of Thriller's release, I think it is instructive for marketers to consider those times when effective marketing has helped consumers reward a brilliant work of ...