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Michael Jackson reboots his career

imagesHelp in reviving a flagging career can come from the oddest quarters. There’s just nothing like a hand from the Grim Reaper to pep up your market worth.

Take Michael Jackson for example. In life, he had long been regarded as a freak of dubious personal standards. His estate was, more than once in the past few years, on the verge of bankruptcy.

In death, however, we can’t get enough of him. Within hours of the announcement of his fatal heart-attack, his albums occupied the top 15 slots on online retailer Amazon. A new record in iPod downloads of his singles must surely be in the offing.

The debate over Jackson’s true level of talent will reverberate for some time. There’s no doubting his star quality, however. Or his importance to the corporate world.

“He really set the bar for the corporate world to embrace pop music,” says Ryan Schinman, CEO, Platinum Rye Entertainment, which partners celebrities and music talent for commercials. “The minute that Michael did [the Pepsi Billie Jean] ad it broke the mould for pop stars to endorse corporations. And today it is still one of the most memorable commercials of all time.”

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