Same Old Snoop Dogg Song and Dance

Snoppdogg 150x150 Same Old Snoop Dogg Song and DanceSnoop Dogg, the infamous hip hop singer, has been rehabilitated and now re-launched with a new name, new film, and new album. It’s a full agenda; the “Snoop Dogg” name has been discarded. His new one? Snoop Lion. The spiritually re-birthed Snoop Lion is no longer “singing about smoking weed and killing people.”  Instead, his new message is about smoking weed and then “smoking some more.”

Snoop Lion, whose real name is Calvin Broadus, is a 41-year-old rapper who was acquitted, along with his bodyguard, of the murder of a gang member. He is now launching a new album called Reincarnated, as well as a feature length documentary with the same name. The central theme? His love of weed, the power of weed, and the history of weed.

His re-launch seems puzzlingly similar to his previous persona, which centered around weed. Not known for puritan living, he tells GQ that he would like to spread the word about his favorite pastime. “It’s actually grown from the ground straight to you, so its like eating a vegetable,” he explains. Snoop Lion then takes the interviewer to his favorite physician, Dr. Dina, who provides “medicinal weed” in a place where a “baby faced blonde” employee named Rachel does a handstand. Is this really a reincarnation?

THE PR VERDICT: “D” (PR Problematic) for Snoop Lion, né Dogg. His metamorphosis into Snoop Lion needs a more radical script.

THE PR TAKEAWAY: A different script for a different image.  Snoop Dog was the shorthand for all things “weed related,” says the singer, claiming, “I partake in all things Snoop Dogg” (ie, weed). His re-launch is meant to be coincide with his spiritual reincarnation, as explained in the album and the film documentary. But his GQ interview only reinforces everything we previously knew. From a PR point of view, and without anything new to say, this was a 360 degree reincarnation. Reinvention, or reincarnation, is ineffective if the allegedly new person just keeps saying the same old thing. From Snoop Dogg to Snoop Lion and back to Dogg again…

To read the interview, click here.

Should John Edwards’s Mistress Tell All?

 Should John Edwardss Mistress Tell All?

The PR Verdict: “D” for Rielle Hunter, John Edwards’s mistress.

Rielle Hunter, former mistress of Senator John Edwards and mother of his love child, is ready for her moment in the sun. Having previously been moved to and from various safe houses to avoid media scrutiny, as though she was in a witness protection program, Hunter is now poised for interviews. The Justice Department has confirmed it will not retry the case of campaign finance fraud against her former beau, and Hunter’s publicist says she will now end her “silence.”

Hunter is no stranger to the media. A filmmaker herself, she bared all in an interview with GQ in 2010. Describing her affair with Edwards as  a “magnetic force field,” she told readers, “I know he loves me… I have never had any doubt at all about that.”

Hunter is setting the record straight with interviews on ABC’s  “20/20,” and a host of other media appearances. What’s new? Her tell-all book, What Really Happened: John Edwards, Our Daughter, and Me. Hunter’s PR said, “Ms. Hunter is looking forward to speaking the truth, and we believe [interviewer] Chris Cuomo will allow her story to be told with candor and respect.”

The PR Verdict: “D” (It’s a Dud) for Rielle Hunter and her forlorn stab at publicity. Hasn’t her moment passed?

PR Takeaway:  Choosing the right moment is just as important as realizing when that moment has passed. Despite her claim that she remains devoted to Edwards, Hunter risks pulling jurors’ reactions out of the woodwork and reigniting lurid details from the trial (and talk of Edward’s deceased wife Elizabeth) that Team Edwards is presumably keen to put behind it. Making the transition from “the other woman”  to something more neutral is where Hunter’s PR salvation lies. Our suggestion: Follow the Camilla Parker-Bowles PR template on how to rehabilitate an image.

What’s your PR Verdict–should Rielle Hunter capitalize on her claim to fame or move on? Tell us in Speak Your Mind, below.

Justin Bieber and Dinner with Mommie

justin bieber 02 300x207 Justin Bieber and Dinner with Mommie

The PR Verdict: “F” for Justin Bieber.

Does anyone, apart from pubescent teenage girls, find Justin Bieber even vaguely interesting?  Not really, might be the inevitable response.  While the 18-year-old singer continues to enjoy extraordinary popularity in his target demographic, his PR minders have obviously been wondering if they should explore further afield.  Cue an interview in the latest edition of GQ Magazine.

On paper the interview made complete sense.  How can we make Justin seem more interesting to another demographic? Why not young(ish), fashion conscious men who might want to hear more about him?  “How about a sit down interview with GQ?” must have been the excitement at the morning meeting.  Let’s see what we can arrange!

Bieber did the interview.  Nice enough. But the bad news is that it did nothing more than reinforce his image as a young kid, taken by surprise by his own success.  GQ describes him as ‘ a very small human being’ who resembles the Star Wars super hero Luke Skywalker,   “if he had his own perfume line”.  The interview was finally completed, after having been rearranged multiple times to squeeze in dinner with his mommie.

The PR Verdict:  “F” for a failed strategy.  It will take more than an interview with GQ to make him into the bad boy of music.  And next time don’t mention dinner with mommie.

PR TAKEAWAY:  Give a journalist something new to write about, otherwise the default content will be what has been written already.   This was an interview searching for a subject matter.  Bieber (all of 18) was unable to identify a cause, issue or romantic interest that would takes his profile to the Mickey Rourke or Sean Penn level.  GQ concluded the interview by opining that for Bieber “manhood can wait”.   Sadly , this interview was at best five years too early.

To read the interview click here.