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Did You Cash in on 50 Shades of Pay?

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Tie-in to 50 Shades of Grey brings 50 shades of pay

Photo by Flora Brown who thankfully has no aspirations for a career in photography

In the summer of 2012 I met a friend for lunch. As an avid reader, she always carries a book with her. This time I couldn’t help but notice her copy of 50 Fifty Shades of Grey on the table, covered by a yellow flower in her attempt to camouflage it. She should have used a larger flower. (I can sometimes get a sharper focus, but I had to be quick. I was sneaking this shot.)

This mixed reaction is typical from readers who are hiding or denying their attraction to 50 Fifty Shades of Grey, but are devouring it nonetheless.

The reaction by early readers foretold the book’s destiny. Check out its count of 29, 956 reviews as I was writing this article (that MUST be a record.) Many of the reviewers bashed the book as poorly written, amateurish, with unbelievable characters, but admitted they couldn’t put it down.

Even before the BDSM movie “50 Shades of Grey” opened in movie theaters on February 14th, the book-turned-movie sparked widespread reaction that will surely lead to 50 shades of pay for entrepreneurs, authors, psychologists, and others who are riding its popularity.

Quick-thinking entrepreneurs tie-in to the movie’s popularity

    • A Texas church gave a twist to the message of the movie by offering “Right THEY Valentines Day weekend experience” where the book 50 Shades of They by Pastor Ed Young was the reading material.
    • In an article titled 50 Shades of No Way, sex therapist says the book is the talk among her clients who worry that they are not steamy enough
    • Always urging us to get free publicity, Joan Stewart, the publicity hound, shares how B.L. Ochman pulled traffic to her Google+ account when she shared the LEGO version of “50 Shades” a few weeks ago.
    • Looking for more steamy romance? There’s an app for that. It’s called After Dark.
    • You can get your 50 Shades of Grey Christmas tree ornaments if you order early
    • Manicurists didn’t waste time creating nail art around this theme

Celebrities had their fun with parodies

Negative reactions and repercussions get attention too

  • University of Chicago student charged with sexual assault after allegedly trying to recreate scenes from movie
  • Middle school students were unintentionally given 50 Shades of Grey crossword puzzles
  • American and Canadian activists who work to prevent domestic violence started a grassroots movement, 50 Dollars Not 50 Shades, urging us to donate to women’s shelters instead of buying movie tickets. Follow them on Twitter at #50dollarsnot50shades
  • Accusing 50 Shades of sabotaging intimacy, clinical psychologist Dr. Juli Slattery and Dannah Gresh are offering a free copy of their “Christian perspective” intimacy book, Pulling Back the Shades, in exchange for copies of the E L James novel. (Be sure to check out the authors’ poses on their website.)

“50 Shades of Grey” author was stunned her hobby piece became a phenomenon

No one is more surprised at the popularity and widespread reactions to her erotic romance trilogy starting with “50 Shades of Grey” than British wife and mom of two, E.L. James. She told TODAY’s Michelle Kosinski  “This is my midlife crisis, writ large. All my fantasies in there, and that’s it.”  James admits she’s not a great nor disciplined writer, and yet she brought a hot topic into the mainstream. That means lucrative pay for her and those who rode her popularity wave.

I’m a firm believer in promoting your book, business or service by piggybacking on holidays, special events and popular trends.

If you are opposed to the topic of a book or prominent political figure, where you draw the line on piggybacking to promote your book?

  • do you create your own book or movement presenting the opposing viewpoint?
  • do you quickly stock up on gray ties in your haberdashery?
  • do you could write an analytical work about the irony of the main character’s name, Christian, or write a parody about the political figure?
  • do you talk about how Jackie Collins is tame by comparison to “50 Shades of Grey”?

Would you let your distaste or disgust stop you from riding the 50 shades of pay possible for your business, product or  service with a “50 Shades of Grey” tie-in? Speak up in the comments.

Leave your comment and share this article with others. I’m counting on you.

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Article by Flora Brown

Flora Brown is an author, blogger, speaker, and publishing coach. Check out her books on http://amazon.com/author/florabrown

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  1. I never got on the 50 shades bandwagon, but think they made a big mistake cutting Ellen out of the lead role.
    Whenever anything is this big of a hit it is a good idea to tie in and get those search engines running your direction.

    • Hi Linda,

      Ellen may have been cut from the lead role, but she didn’t miss a beat on boarding that publicity train. We all can benefit from doing the same.

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