The Michael Jackson Music Videos That Made MTV, Cable TV

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It’s too early to judge Michael Jackson’s complete impact on media. But there is this: In 1983, MTV played the music video Thriller every hour on the hour. By all accounts, that video alone made MTV a success. And there’s a case to be made that without MTV’s success, cable never would have made it.

So, OK, Michael’s impact was huge.

How did he do it? Two ways the rest of us can learn from:

  • He had talent.
  • He spent a lot of money showing it off.

Michael or his handlers realised music videos were the perfect way to brand a pop star, and he wasted no expense on them. The music videos for Scream, Bad, Black or White, Remember the Time, and Thriller alone cost $12.5 million to make.

It paid off.

Watch and learn.

Black or White

Bad

Smooth Criminal

Billy Jean

Thriller

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