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August 25, 2021

Coach tries to unbrand Snooki by sending her rivals' gear: report

If you watch Jersey Shore – and for those not inclined, it’s that guilty pleasure hit reality show on MTV – you know what it’s like to watch one of the series’ stars, Snooki, stumble around.

She’s always a little bit drunk, a lot bit crazy and notoriously has that tiny Coach purse hanging from her wrist. She’s lovable, but she is also a train wreck.

Well, imagine how Coach feels.

Yes, while Snooki has become a bona fide celebrity from her David Hasselhoff-like behaviour, it’s been a regrettable celebrity at that. And in one of the coolest marketing stories I’ve heard this year, it turns out brands don’t want the Snooki Stink.

According to the New York Observer, Snooki’s being seen on every episode of Jersey Shore  (that of the288100_handbag_2 5.5-million-viewers-per-week Jersey Shore) with her Coach purse isn’t so much music to the designer’s ears.

A source tells the Observer’s Simon Doonan that Coach has begun doling out free gear and handbags to Snooki – but get this, they’re donned with anything but the Coach label.

Coach has been allegedly sending Snooki free designer bags from competitors’ lines just so she won’t be seen holding theirs on TV, where sometimes she sits on giant fake dogs and says things like, “Oh, it hurts my vagina … (but) no, I like it.”

You have to admit, this strategy is brilliant, if true: keep a cancerous celebrity from touting your gear by lavishing them with the free products of your competition. It’s the ultimate in damage control, and the ultimate in inflicting damage on your rival brands.

Even if Doonan’s rumour isn’t accurate, this certainly isn’t the first case of high-culture companies trying to keep their products from the hands of undesired persons.

On the fake side, there was that whole Tommy Hilfiger hoax from a few years back – where the designer supposedly went on Oprah and said “… if I’d known African-Americans, Hispanics, Jews and Asians would buy my clothes, I would not have made them so nice.”

That wasn’t true, but this was. In a rebuttal to rappers constantly flaunting their Champagne, bottler Louis Roederer – maker of Cristal – hinted that they wished North American hip-hoppers would stop bragging about consuming their drink, for it might hurt the brand long term.

To that, said Jay-Z, we boycott. The Brooklyn rapper said the comments were “racist” and announced he would ban the sales of Cristal at his 40/40 Club in New York, instead choosing to serve Dom Pérignon and Krug instead.

By Jason Buckland, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...