Simon Cowell is arguably the king of creating entertainment brands, particularly when it comes to packaging pop stars.
Cowell has made a very lucrative business for himself out of creating British game shows and exporting them successfully to America. He has the added joy of being known as an overly confident, brash, opinionated guy who wasn’t afraid to say some blunt and nasty remarks to the brave soul who've come before him for juding in a variety of talent shows.
As his X Factor talent show prepares to jump the pond from the UK to the US, he's not ignoring X Factor UK — far from it.
According to Marketing Week, he's refining the art of star-making for the winners he signs from X Factor and his other shows as launchpads, with "Cowell’s music label Syco is shifting the way it promotes its artists to be brand-led, with a series of multi-platform campaigns to make its acts as recognisable as household brands."
Syco is rolling out a first-of-its-kind campaign to promote X Factor contestant Cher Lloyd, a British singer with an upcoming single, Swagger Jagger, to promote — the marketing of which will "be delivered entirely by one agency, rather than using separate creative houses for releases, live events and merchandising," according to the report.
The packaged marketing approach to his star-making machine comes with other big news for Team Cowell: the signing of Domino’s as the first sponsor to his next UK series, Red or Black. That big-ticket TV talent show will see contestants vie for £1 million ($1.6 million) by simply spinning a big wheel in the middle of Wembley Stadium.
The Domino’s deal is worth more than £1 million, according to The Guardian. What will that kind of cash buy you? “TV, online and mobile sponsorship as well as ‘off-air activation,’” the paper notes.
"With its fast-paced, edge-of-your-seat format, we know that viewers are going to be glued to their screens and while they're deciding Red or Black at home," said Simon Wallis, sales and marketing director at Domino's, to the Guardian. "The home is our point of sale so unmissable TV events such as Red or Black create an ideal time for a product, such as pizza."
Simon Daglish, ITV's new director of multi-platforms and partnerships, noted, "This collaboration is a great example of how ITV wants to work with its customers in the future.”
Despite a rare misstep — he changed his mind about using Britpop star Cheryl Cole as a judge on The X Factor US — it's fair to say that, with Pepsi and Chevrolet already on board for The X Factor's US debut and his UK empire continuing apace, the Simon Cowell branding juggernaut continues.