Monday, March 28

How Do You Replace An Icon?

In a way, this is a follow up to my blog post last week on benchmark brands. Brands that define a category, and create an instant standard in our minds.

Elizabeth Taylor is a benchmark brand. She set the standard in so many ways.

Two time Academy Award winning actress. Basically defined romance on the silver screen -- and had a Hollywood lifestyle that kept her current and in the news. Check out "Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf" and you'll see what acting is all about.

Fashion and Jewels. The most glamorous woman of her time, hands down. Her love affair with fashion, particularly jewelry, is legendary. I have a coffee table book showcasing it all, and it's amazing. Her couture collection sells at auctions at record prices.

Business Woman. Her "White Diamonds" perfume set the stage for the celebrity fragrance industry and still remains the best selling celebrity fragrance worldwide. Can you believe it? Still beats Jennifer Anniston, Britney Spears, Celine Dion, Mariah Carey, you name it. Elizabeth Taylor set the bar and still raises it.

Activist. This is definitively where she has made the biggest impact, and also created the most loyal admirers. Elizabeth Taylor was the first public figure to truly embrace the AIDS crisis and do something about it. Like going and visiting patients and touching them. Raising money for them. Staying with them day after day, year after year. She personally changed people's perceptions of AIDS patients, right from day one. She couldn't help it, most of her friends were gay. But she also knew who had brought her success and she was going to pay them back. Very admirable. We will never forget what she has done.

Elizabeth Taylor. An icon on so many fronts. Completely irreplaceable.

What's your experience? Jim.

PS - Elizabeth Taylor had written into her will that she wanted to arrive to her own funeral 15 minutes late. She always wanted to be "fashionably late"! Those close to her kept her wishes and sure enough she arrived 15 minutes late to her own funeral. Love her.

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