I listened to CNN a few minutes ago and heard a discussion of the effect Martha Stewart’s conviction will have on her brand. In short, she has become a serious liability to her brand.
It is hard to imagine that consumers will be persuaded by a brand image connected with a felon.
Now if she had been in the music industry and had some really baad songs out, she might start getting more airplay. That is an entirely different game, where time in the slammer may appeal to a certain cross section of your public.
I’m afraid that Martha forgot some marketing basics, because she failed to see that if her name is the brand, then everything she does affects the value of the brand.
If the reports I heard are correct, her name will be removed from her company and the brand will disappear. As Jennifer Rice might say, it is time for some imaginative repositioning of the Martha Stewart brand.
Perhaps the Martha Stewart brand will reappear as a symbol of how to do a makeover on your life.
She will write a book while in prison and will appear on Oprah via remote pickup. She will remake herself in a new and brighter image and will rise again. Martha is a brilliant and creative person. When, and if, she straightens out, she will reap the benefits of public approval again.
We will have to wait and see. It won’t be long, I expect. She moves fast.