Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Charlie Sheen is a Marketing Genius, & What We Can Learn From Him by Allen Miller, HitmanPR

I have been in PR, marketing for 20 years and been teaching my clients how to celebritize themselves using social media. We can learn a lot from Charlie Sheen in the way of marketing, the new media and how to use it. There are several rules I have been teaching for years; Charlie Sheen is the best example to illustrate those points. This is marketing at its best.

The first most important rule in social media is respond to the conversation especially when someone disagrees with you. Case in point. I am marketing for a very famous artist, photographer/videographer Norman Seeff. Norman has just produced a movie backed by NASA called “The Triumph of a Dream!” This film is going to go world wide very shortly. To be linked with this film and of course NASA would be a marketers dream. So I linked one of my other clients that work with World Financial Group (WFG), as a sponsor for the film. When we goggled WFG, numerous links were encountered calling WFG a SCAM, FRAUD, etc. Upon seeing this Norman Seeff and his team, refused WFG as a sponsor. Not because they were a fraud or not, that was an unknown, it was because WFG didn’t defend itself. WFG did not counter the claims or even speak to the claims. In the case of Charlie Sheen, when the first comments came out about Charlie’s lifestyle from Loree, Sheen responded quickly and decisively with a response. Chuck Lorre then came out with a response to Sheen’s and then so on and so forth for the last few weeks. This argument went viral and now he has sold out one-man shows in New York.

Rule #1-- Answer your complaints faster than your compliments-most of all answer!

The second rule and probably the most important rule-People live vicariously through you. Everybody thinks that everybody’s life is more interesting than his or her own. Case in point, Charlie Sheen has given us a glimpse into his life the nice house, the two “Goddesses” the cars etc. Charlie Sheen has been fired from his job, is in a custody dispute, and is suing his employer. However, he turned this online argument into 2+million followers on twitter and companies are lined up to use him to represent their products. Now you that have products and services tell your followers or potential followers about the encounters you have, people want to read and know about you. They identify with the fantasy they see as you. I have a client Bonnie-Jill Laflin, she is the only female scout or the NBA, working with the Lakers. She gets to play hoops with the Lakers and Kobie several times a week. She takes this for granted, but most people I know would kill for the opportunity to play basketball with the Lakers. 

Rule #2 -Nothing in your life is insignificant people want to know as they idealize everybody other than themselves.


The third rule, don’t stop, once you start this do not stop! Charlie Sheen has staged wonderful examples of this rule. Charlie and one of his goddesses were planning a siege of CBS to get his motor home back. They were dressed in commando type uniforms with a map of all his video. They go to the studio, walk in and drive out no confrontation. Genius, everyone watches because will there be drama, fights no. That’s not the point they engaged everyone in the “OP” and people watched. Charlie has been on a number of media outlets continuously since this started and was only bumped by a Tsunami. But I guarantee after this levels out (bad pun) well be back watching Charlie’s life. Chuck Lorre CBS, everyone has stopped speaking about Charlie, except Charlie. We were taught as children when this type of argument started to “let it go” “turn the other cheek”, “it will blow over” and my favorite "don't stoop to their level". NO this is wrong, answer back, the one that is the longest winded WINS. Look what happed to WFG, they turned the other check, and lost an opportunity to take their business vertical with NASA. They lost an opportunity of a lifetime to market their business because they thought it would go away. REMEMBER what happens in Vegas, may stay in Vegas. But it stays on the Internet forever!!!

Rule #3: Keep the conversation going, only if it goes one way. People are watching and listening, even when they’re quiet.

I don’t know if Charlie Sheen, knows these concepts or has someone advising him. Regardless, what has transpired over the last few weeks is absolute GENIUS! 


In conclusion there has been a lot said about Charlie’s “Duh Winning” comment. Charlie Sheen has made approximately 7 million dollars from sold out shows he is going to perform, product placement and from sponsors. Update: There is speculation that Charlie will get his old job back at CBS. He did all this following the rules I have taught for years. So I ask you who is winning, and laughing all the way to the bank.


Allen S. Miller, of HitmanPR is a marketing strategist to actors, authors, athletes, and business professionals. Hitman Public Relations provides business and media strategies to its’ clients for marketing internationally on TV, in print and social media markets. Hitman PR owns channels on Kelsey Grammer’s online TV network where it’s developing, directing and broadcasting new content.  Hitman PR was originally created to publicize his longtime friend Farrah Fawcett's (Fawcett’s Farrahfawcett.us)  message of hope to the world.