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The Effect Michael Jackson Had On VCR Sales

Last updated Jun 4, 2017

The Effect Michael Jackson Had On VCR Sales

I was checking out Facebook today and came across a post my friend Chiji shared of some rare Michael Jackson footage.  It was MJ practicing for the Thriller video.

More than 30 years later the album and the video still remain relevant.  However, one thing most people don’t realize is that not only did Michael change music, and video with Thriller, but he also drove VCR sales.

It’s the kind of thing you had to be around in 1983 to understand. Leading up to the late 1983 release of the Thriller video MTV had made watching music video’s popular.  But Michael made owning music videos popular.  In fact Thriller is likely the only music video you ever wanted to own.

By making Thriller in the format of a movie, telling a short story, and making the video available for sale in stores Michael revolutionized the marketing of music videos…and drove VCR sales through the roof.

I remember when the Thriller video was released people hitting electronic stores to by VCR’s to watch the video.  My family bought our first VCR just so we could watch Thriller. Notice in the chart below the spike at the end of 1983.  Wondering what happened at the tail end of that year?  The Thriller video was released November 2, 1983.

VCR sales

Source: https://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/854/763

If you were to pull a chart of Adidas sales and the chart buster My Adidas by Run DMC you’d see the same thing.

Something 2 Make U Go Hmm!: Check this out.

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