Whatever works, right?*
From the Telegraph:
Japan's cash-strapped government is reportedly turning to popular music group AKB48 to help it sell government bonds, as interest in the low-yield paper wanes.
The all-female pop group will headline a summer campaign for "reconstruction bonds" aimed at financing projects in regions hammered by last year's quake-tsunami disaster, the Wall Street Journal said, citing an unnamed source.AKB48, one of the world's highest-grossing acts with more than $200m in CD and DVD sales last year, are a phenomenon in Japan and across Asia, with members appearing in commercials for everything from chocolate to mobile phones.The debt campaign will see AKB48 - comprising about 90 performers, ranging in age from early teens to mid-20s - joined by sumo wrestling's champion Hakuho and female football star Homare Sawa, Japan's Jiji press agency reported.The group's bubblegum pop and synchronised dancing has proved a huge hit with young girls.Running the gamut from girl-next-door to sultry temptress, the band also has a substantial male following - many of whom are older - who support a vast merchandising industry....MORE
*In Kate Smith's New York Times obituary mention is made that "In one 18-hour stint on the CBS radio network, Miss Smith sold $107 million worth of War Bonds".
Professor Robert K. Merton wrote a whole book on Smith's 18 hours, Mass Persuasion: The Social Psychology of a War Bond Drive.
(Merton uses the much lower figure of $39 million)
In all she peddled $600 million worth, enough to put any Salomon Brothers or Goldman salesman to shame.