Labor Day has come and gone, and for many, it is the symbolic end to summer. School is back in session, white pants are put in storage and pool floaties are deflated. While summer may officially end on Sept. 23 - and here in Phoenix it’s still 110 degrees - it is time for us to look forward to fall. But before we do that, let’s recap what we learned this summer. No, not through our fabulous and informational blog posts of months past (although I highly recommend you skim our archives), but what we learned from this summer’s biggest PR stories, scandals and stunts.
In Part III of our Summer Series, it's all about the money, baby!
5. Abercrombie & Fitch vs. The Jersey Shore
In August, Abercrombie & Fitch issued a statement in which it offered money to MTV’s Jersey Shore cast member Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino to stop wearing the brand. The statement read: “We are deeply concerned that Mr. Sorrentino’s association with our brand could cause significant damage to our image.”
Although it is understandable the brand wouldn’t want to be associated with the fist-pumping, shot guzzling party-goers, it seemed a little odd that this statement would come from a youth clothing brand that has made graphic tees with Jersey Shore references such as “GTL” and “The Fitchuation.”
All in all, it seemed like a marketing ploy for A&F, which released its second quarter report the day after revealing the offer. Meanwhile, The Situation has said he plans to have “a little fun” with this….situation.
What we learned: Keep you brand in check, but first, check what your brand keeps.
6. NBA Lockout
First the NFL, now the NBA. Lockouts are nothing new to the professional sports industry, but the way they plan to get the results they want has changed. In the 1998 NBA lockout players flaunted their wealth with lavish parties and expensive cars despite seeking more money, which in turn made their demands seem utterly ridiculous to the public. When the 50-game season resumed, ticket sales and television ratings significantly declined from pre-lockout seasons.
Thirteen years later, NBA players have learned the art of modesty. (Let’s all laugh together at that statement. Okay, moving on.) Derek Fisher, the president of the National Basketball Players Association, has placed huge emphasis on the players’ public image, and included a “media” section with talking points in a lockout handbook distributed to the NBA’s 400 players.
Although it will probably be some time before an agreement is made, and the salaries will still be ridiculous staggering amounts, we will at least be spared from hearing complaints of the high priced “needs” of an NBA star.
What we learned: Don’t ask a beggar for change for the parking meter, especially while driving a Benz.