Unless you were living under a rock for the past year you have seen the emergence of Charlie Sheen and his craziness. This time last year Charlie Sheen was on a drug and alcohol induced binge that resulted in Sheen going on a war path against his former show’s boss. Sheen was the most talked about story for the moment. Charlie Sheen’s trademark Twitter hashtags #WINNING and #TIGERBLOOD were the nationally trending topics on Twitter. This is a PR goldmine or a nightmare depending on how you look at the situation.
From a marketing perspective, Sheen’s sudden increase in popularity provided a lot of opportunities. For example, he was able to sell out a one man show tour on the heels of his Twitter rants because people were either interested in seeing what he had to say or simply hoping to be witness to an on-stage meltdown. With a situation like this web marketing is almost too easy.
As the saying goes any publicity is good publicity. This rang true for Charlie Sheen. Charlie Sheen created a Twitter after being dismissed by Warner Brothers and set a new Guiness world record as the fastest to reach 1 million followers. Right now he has over 2.6 billion followers. For a brand or company that represents good web marketing.
Although some of his antics were not exactly the smartest for his image or his acting career, it inadvertently worked to his advantage financially, at least in the short term and made him a very marketable commodity. Charlie Sheen represented the human version of an accident and his audience was proverbially rubbernecking; in addition to this, everyone loves a comeback story and Sheen putting his life back on track would represent a comeback of Mickey Rourke-esque proportions which would greatly engage the public’s interests. Online marketing firms dream of situations like this. Think about how easy it is to market something or someone when they are the most talked about person at the moment.
However, promoting Charlie Sheen is like fishing with dynamite. He was unpredictable and could be a PR nightmare with his outbursts. Veteran Hollywood publicist Stan Rosenfeld who represented Sheen for a very long time resigned after Sheen’s outburst against Chuck Lorre, the creator of Two and a Half Men. Therefore it is important to gauge whether it is worth losing the goodwill of your media contacts before accepting a client like Charlie Sheen.