Finding That Common Ground

Grease: Live is almost here. After months of rehearsals and marketing hype, some of the hottest musical celebrities are ready to make their television musical debut on Fox. But the one question on the lips of every Fox executive . . . Have they done enough to beat NBC’s musical trifecta over the past three years? Let’s take a look at one of their strategies in the lead up to this landmark event.

Similar to all the other television musicals, Grease: Live has turned to a cast filled with star power to attract viewers not only from across America, but also from across the world. Jessie J will open the performance with a new version of the title song ‘Grease (is the word)’. Movie star Julianne Hough and crossover musical star Aaron Tveit will then lead a cast filled with some of television and music’s brightest stars including Carly Rae Jepsen, Keke Palmer, Ana Gasteyer, Mario Lopez, Joe Jonas and Vanessa Hudgens.

But how do you maximise the impact of all these stars?

The best pieces of marketing begin to form a relationship with the consumer. Providing information which resonates with audiences and gives them some personal ownership over the product. And Grease: Live has drawn on this with a significant amount of high school-themed promotion.

Everyone has embarrassing memories from high school. When you throw a group of kids going through puberty into the one room together for six years, weird things are bound to happen. Were you the kid who accidentally called the teacher ‘Mum’? Accidentally had your dress tucked into your underwear and nobody told you? Walked around school with a ‘Kick Me’ sign sticky taped to your back?

At the time these were all devastating events, but now we can look back and laugh . . . which is exactly what FOX has had the cast of Grease: Live do!

Interviews with the Grease: Live cast have been circling the internet as they recount their traumatic and memorable experiences from high school. A topic which is rather pertinent given the setting of this iconic musical. But this isn’t purely a piece of marketing fluff designed to link in with the subject matter of the show. Recounting these embarrassing memories has a second function.

It humanises the actors.

Even these incredibly attractive and talented people had their own share of high school dramas. Something which every audience member can relate to. Chances are that one of them went through an experience very similar what you have been through providing a mutual experience which resonates with you as a potential audience member. And this forms the beginning of a relationship between you and Grease: Live.

Grease: Live will be broadcast on FOX tonight in America and will make its way across to Australia this Tuesday on Channel Nine from 8.30pm. They are even doing a number of live scenes outdoors as well despite forecast rain in LA. Who knows, it could actually be ‘Raining On Prom Night’!

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