Marketing Eye

50 Shades of Marketing

I have a conspiracy theory relating to the latest blockbuster novel "50 Shades of Grey".

If you have spent any time at all reading any of the three novels in the series, you would realize that other than a basic storyline, it is all about porn. Albeit soft.

1.5 million people have already read this book. I have read it. My friends have read it. It is addictive and completely trashy, but let's face it - women love this type of stuff. Look at how successful Mills and Boons was and still is.

My theory though, having read two of the New York Times Bestseller Trilogy series, that the book was commissioned by a large chain or perhaps online sex store. Bare with me as I explain...

There is little storyline other than the fact that there is three families in the Trilogy and the main characters are Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele. At least nine-tenths of each book is just about sex and in particular, S&M.

50 Shades of Grey Trilogy

The books are not even particularly well written but their descriptive blows on sex with whips, blind folds, kinky toys and alike is like opening a window for housewives around the world to get excited about sex again and go out and try a few different positions with the aid of a few toys.

Adultshop.com has recorded a 40 percent increase in sales. Any shop selling grey ties, has without doubt, sold out. And sex shops around the globe are selling out of any props or toys discussed in the 50 Shades of Grey. This, I believe, is no accident. On top of that, the twitter accounts for Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey are followed by millions and if you follow them, they will follow you back. If you ask them a question, they will answer in character.

It's marketing. Now, I could be wrong, and a genius marketer may not be behind it, but I really doubt that that is the case.

No different to episodes in sex in the city about the "rabbit" or any other shoe or dress design that Carrie saw fit to wear, a product can sell out just by a sheer mention on television, in a movie, online and in books.

Do you think that 50 Shades of Grey is a commission or a naughty author obsessed in S&M?


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