The Commercial Appeal from Memphis did a story on "selling Elvis". Here it is:
Ever wonder how the marketing minds at Elvis Presley Enterprises keep the king's pop culture reign going nearly 30 years after his death? "We just answer the phone," said Scott Williams, EPE marketing and communications director, in a presentation Wednesday to the Public Relations Society of America's Memphis chapter.
There is, of course, more than that to creating all those tie-ins -- Elvis and Budweiser, Elvis and Harley-Davidson, an all-Elvis channel on Sirius Satellite Radio-- that keep the singer's name, image and music prominent. It was all to make Williams' point that "Elvis sells Elvis better than anything we can do."
But just answering the phones at EPE must be a chore, because they apparently ring a lot.
"I think only 3 percent of the licensing applications get approved," Williams said. "One thing about EPE that's really great is, they really think through the planning of the products and promotions."
He highlighted one that made the cut -- a partnership with Hershey's that's led to limited-edition Reese's peanut butter and banana creme cups.
Reese's also will be giving away a pink Cadillac and a trip to Graceland.
"They're also going to give away ... some checks that Elvis wrote -- that have been canceled," Williams said.
"This is what's so fun about working with brands like this -- they just have some great ideas."
Williams, during his address to the PR types, also put in a pitch for elvisweek.com. That's the Web site devoted to next month's 30th anniversary edition of Elvis Week.
Elvis Still Selling Elvis BestJuly 12, 2007 | Other Source:Commercial Appeal
Viva wrote on July 12, 2007
What a load of PR crap. They are so great at that smug, condescending "aren't we great" form of PR. As for the Commercial appeal, they should be ashamed of themselves peddling this kind of contrived, arse-kissing, lazy journalism. Instead of pandering to the huge egos of those at EPE, they should be asking questions like "What the f**k are you doing sticking the face of the greatest entertainer of all time on a jar of peanut butter?". As for the laughable quote "One thing about EPE that's really great is, they really think through the planning of the products and promotions." What a load of rancid dogs eggs. Give 'em a cheque for a hundred grand+ and you can stick Elvis' face on anything you like. I found the "only 3 percent of the licensing applications get approved" line somewhat interesting; obviously the other 97 per cent were from major TV and Music companies wanting to do something creative with Elvis' body of work. Heaven forbid.
rosiel wrote on July 12, 2007
This is the kind of view that should be deleted from here. Angry and nasty and uncalled for. Scott Williams is right, Elvis sells himself but,they should try to keep the merchandise more classy. Some of it is disturbing, like the Elvis ducks and stuff.
elvis14 wrote on July 12, 2007
i agree with you 100%. all a bunch of crap! all out for the MONEY. and the crap that they agree to is unreal. what can we do when they have these morons running EPE? i would love to work there and change things for the better.
Robban wrote on July 12, 2007
Viva for the first time I totally agree and that is with you, I have nothing else to say in this matter.
Viva wrote on July 13, 2007
rosiel: This site is all about diverse opinions: That's the whole point, and one which makes this Elvis site stand head and shoulders above any other. By all means disagree with me, but trying to censor me is nothing short of disgraceful. I happen to feel very strongly about the way EPE conduct themselves, and I shall voice my opinion whenever I get the opportunity. It's called freedom of speech.
Steve V wrote on July 13, 2007
Right - Its about opinions and always should be. No one should be criticised for their opinion. I have been and Its OK, because it's a free forum. Oh by the way, agree with Viva on this one!
Colonel7 wrote on July 14, 2007
Good work Scott ! Love to hear from you asap if EPE Mgmt plans further promotions with Hilton Hotels ? Perhaps a great idea if EP fans can get a 30% rate discount if they stay in Hiltons worldwide, or only USA if not possible, or only fully-owned HHotels or just for Honored Hilton Guests (their program). Let us know on Aug 16th will you Scott ? As Director of marketing also please news re. replacing or upgrading (further extending) the CDs In Person (adding from Gold Collectors Vegas69) and On Stage (adding from Gold Coll Vegas 1970) as well as Elvis from Memphis (adding Elvis back in M'phis) and thus eliminate the old CD versions that carry only 18 or 20 songs....and selling the new versions at a formidable profit again and again. Since Sony owns the rights on those, they won't need to pay extra royalties...Only Taking Care of B and Fans... While we're at it, Scott: when can we expect FTD releases of GuitarMan, PromLand and BurningL sessions & outtakes, movie outtakes of GGGirls, complete sessions & outtakes of King Creole, BH and GIB?Thanks for informing the fans Scott. We'd dig that news before August in M'phis, man !
Ruthie wrote on July 16, 2007
Wow! I have been off this site for a few days but, coming back, I can see where I will need to take more time off. I have never referred to anyone's opinion as crap nor have I ever used f**k in any of my "opinions" yet many of my responses were not printed. I have been told by regular contributors, including one of the persons who operates this site, that I am wierd & most of my opinions can't be counted as much because I am such an "Elvis fanatic". Yet look at some of the comments on this site. Talk about a double standard!
Colonel7 wrote on July 16, 2007
Don't get upset Ruthie ! It happens to so many fans and we all know that those guys running this site are biased and non-professional. They only print so-called positive comments and shy away from the realistic and constructive criticism that one may have, in order and to help the fans like us who are live-long fans; something that should be treasured.