Monday, February 28, 2005

No publicity is bad publicity, as long as they get the name right.

It looks like Barnum was on the money even for the electronic age.

Socialite's nightmare is a cell phone company's dream.

T-Mobile stores in New York are selling out of Sidekicks (a handheld device that stores information online) despite — or more likely, because of — the fact that celebrity phone numbers and naughty pictures were stolen off one belonging to bad-girl heiress Paris Hilton.

"We had an unusually high demand this week," said one Manhattan store employee.

The fact that Hilton currently appears as a celebrity endorser in TV commercials for the Sidekick only added to the attention.

If it turns out that an X-Rated video of Fred Durst that was posted online Friday also came from a Sidekick (the source is unclear), the company will enjoy the kind of brand recognition you can't buy these days.

Marketing experts say T-Mobile, far from being embarrassed, should spoof the incident.

T-Mobile wouldn't be the first company or product to gain widespread exposure through an infamous incident, high-profile crime or compromising situation. The history of marketing shows that such notoriety rarely results in damage to a brand, and more often than not helps.

Chicken of the Sea signed pop star Simpson as a spokeswoman after she seemed puzzled as to whether it was tuna or chicken on an episode of her reality show "Newlyweds."...

... the O.J. Simpson trial helped put Bruno Magli shoes on the map. The company's sales shot up 30 percent after prosecutors claimed Simpson wore the shoes, and Simpson denied it ... . [NY Post]

And, of course, we all remember how Paris Hilton herself gained the celebrity to become a celebrity endorcer.