How Elvis Presley and his manager made $22 million dollars off Elvis's haters

Elvis Aaron Presley, the "King of Rock n Roll," concocted an ingenious strategy with his manager, Tom Parker, to capitalise on his critics.


Elvis Presley and Colonel Tom Parker

Born in 1909, Andreas van Kuijk or famously known as Colonel Tom Parker was a visionary who signed Presley into a contract and their partnership lasted until Presley's death 21 years later.


During the time when Elvis was at his peak, Parker realised that while he's the hottest act around, the fame will last two-three years at max. Parker devised a plan to ride the wave & make the fame bigger than it was by creating the brand Elvis.


Sensing this market opportunity that no music manager had foreseen before, Parker released nearly 50 Elvis-themed products, including bubble gum cards, record players, and "I Hate Elvis Presley" badges!



It was obvious that with his rising popularity, Elvis had gained a lot of haters. Soon the merchandises were flying off the shelves.


When Elvis Presley enlisted in the army for two years in 1958, this consistent merchandise promotion helped to keep his image alive.


By the end of 1957, 'Elvis Merchandise' was a HUGE success and had grossed over $22 million dollars, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.


Marketing lesson:

Branding + Pivot >> Playing the regular game.

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