Wednesday, August 31

Moves Like Jagger

I'm obsessed with a song I just put on my playlist:  "Moves Like Jagger" by Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera.  I've got it playing right now while writing this post!  The beat, the vocals, the lyrics all come together for one heck of a pop song.  And I love that it springs from a collaboration out of the television show "The Voice" (just love integrated marketing!).

The mention of Mick Jagger got me thinking.  When he's used in the song, you instantly know what the lyricist meant.  Instant imagery pops into your mind.  "I've got the moves like Jagger".  In marketing we call that "borrowed interest" or leveraging one brand's equity to enhance another ... using another brand's positioning to make a point.  Classic joint marketing in a way.  Brings Jagger and his brand back to life while selling downloads.

Maroon 5 and Christina Aguilera aren't the first to do this.  I asked around the agency and we came up with quite a few examples.  Remember Kim Carne's "Bette Davis Eyes" or Simon & Garfunkel with "Joe DiMaggio"?  Miley Cyrus had a huge cross over hit with "Party in the USA" where she leverages Britney Spears and Jay-Z.  Pink also made a statement about fame and being compared to Britney Spears in "Don't Let Me Get Me." A classic, for me anyway, is Madonna's "Vogue" where she uses vintage Hollywood stars to create a dance craze. Of course "American Pie" named all sorts of celebrities without naming names.

Clearly not all brands are happy about being mentioned.  Lindsey Lohan is suing Pitbull right now for using her name in the song "Give Me Everything."  Guess she didn't like how her brand was being represented.

I find it all so interesting ... the use of "brands" in pop music to help convey a message and sell a record.  Not to mention all the mentions of Cadillac through the years, that's a whole other post!

Any others ... what's your experience?  Jim.

Jim Joseph
President of Lippe Taylor
Author of The Experience Effect


  1. Just saw Cheap Trick on "Austin City Limits" this week, and there's the line in "Surrender" about mommy and daddy listening to the singer's Kiss records.

  2. Keisha did this before Adam and Christina in Tick Tock-"kick them to the curb unless they look like Mick Jagger." Fun post!

  3. Kid Rock's All Summer Long combines riffs from Warren Zevon's Wherewolves of London and Lynrd Skynrd's Sweet Home Alabama. The chorus includes the line "singing Sweet Home Alabama" all summer long." It was a huge hit not only in the US but in the UK and Australia as well. I guess it drummed up a lot of nostalgia for a certain demo and was fun for Kid Rock fans at the same time. Here is someone who blatantly used 2 iconic classic rock songs, yet used fresh lyrics to relate it to a summertime experience circa "1989." It worked for him. I am sure it also drove a lot of downloads of these two classics as well.

    However there have been a few alternative songs that have mentioned Eddie Vedder; namely "Me and Eddie Vedder" by the Rugburns that may have been liked by some but did get backlash from the die-hard Pearl Jam fans who are quite protective of the band.

    Jim, not sure if you've ever taken a look at how Pearl Jam built their brand with the Ten Club but it's a great case study.