Archive for the ‘Bill Brand’ Category

HSN, Kraft Foods Cook Up Tasty Alliance That Tosses Celebrity Chef Todd English Into The Mix

March 10, 2011

HSN Thursday unveiled its multi-year partnership with Kraft Foods, the world’s No. 2 food company, in a deal that marks the home shopping network’s first alliance with a consumer products company.

“The program will combine innovative content and commerce across multiple platforms and will allow consumers to purchase HSN cooking products on Kraftfoods.com’s recipe pages while enabling them to access Kraft Foods content on HSN.com and other HSN distribution channels,” the press release says. “The initiative is designed to offer people compelling food ideas, quality cookware products and a richer experience in the kitchen.”

Starting next Tuesday, the Kraft Store on Kraftfoods.com will be “powered by HSN” and will showcase HSN cooking-related products from its experts such as Todd English, Wolfgang Puck and Emeril Lagasse. HSN.com will soon start integrating Kraft Foods recipes on product pages in the kitchen category.

Todd English

Other plans include featuring Kraft Foods products in HSN programming; developing cooking video that connects Kraft Foods recipe content with key HSN products for the kitchen and leveraging the video across multiple platforms. The partnership is also leveraging the Kraft Foods portfolio, with a number of power brands developing innovative multiplatform marketing programs with HSN:

HSN’s marketing guru, Bill Brand, had this to say about the pact.

“This partnership further deepens the relationship with our customers by providing them more of what they love about HSN — great experiences and great brands,” said Brand, HSN’S EVP of marketing, programming and business Development for HSN. “We are also excited to introduce new customers to HSN through this initiative while reinforcing our leadership position in the kitchen category.”

Kraft Foods and HSN plan to leverage all of their distribution channels to reach their combined consumer bases. Kraftfoods.com is one of the Top 20 Consumer Products Goods Company food and cooking sites. HSN is available in about 96 million homes. HSN.com Top 10-trafficked e-commerce site that attracts roughly 250,000 unique users every day.

“This partnership is truly unique as it led us to the development of a groundbreaking business model, marrying highly relevant content with interactive shopping and creating multimedia platforms for new product launches,” Julie Fleischer, director of Consumer Relationship Marketing Content Strategy and Integration at Kraft Foods, said in a canned statement. “It will enable us to expand and deepen our consumer engagement with exclusive recipes and brand programs.”

This Saturday Philadelphia Cooking Creme, one of Kraft Foods’ biggest product launches this year, will partner with English (quite the ladie’s man) and HSN for a “unique multi-channel social experience.”

English will appear LIVE on HSN at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. showcasing his GreenPan, cookware as well as cooking recipes featuring Philadelphia Cooking Creme.

On the same day, more than 10,000 homes across the country — a record number for an event coordinated by the company House Party — will be hosting a “Philly Dinnertime Dilemma House Party.”

English will also be chatting llive with home cooks via SKYPE. Let’s hope his ex-fiancee, who he left at the altar, doesn’t call in.

In addiiton, Maxwell House International and HSN have combined for a year-long partnership that integrates Maxwell House International into HSN programming, HSN.com and multi-channel interactive games.

HSN consumers will be encouraged to take a moment in their day to enjoy a cup of Maxwell House International coffee while shopping on HSN. Good luck with that.

During the month of March – International Women’s Month – Maxwell House International will sponsor an interactive game on HSN.com that offers HSN customers the opportunity to win HSN and Maxwell House International coupons and prizes.

HSN Is Part of New Sprint ID Roster

November 9, 2010

This came over the transom Monday night.

Sprint unveiled Sprint ID, which it says will allow consumers and business customers to instantly customize their mobile experience with a pack of apps, widgets, ringtones and wallpapers tailored to their individual interests or needs — including HSN.

“Avid sports fans, fitness fanatics, fashionistas, music lovers, auto enthusiasts, social butterflies and on-the-go business people now can easily discover just what they want, bundled together and available with virtually one simple click,” Sprint tells us.

Initial partners include not only HSN but Amazon, Blackboard, Comcast, Disney, E!, EA, eBay, ESPN, LatCel, MTV, Notre Dame, Oprah Winfrey Network, RadioShack, Weather Channel, Where and Yahoo!

“Our customers like to be on trend, so we know they’ll appreciate that our partnership with Sprint provides them a truly customized mobile phone, tailored to their needs, that looks sleek and delivers a compelling HSN experience whenever and wherever they choose,” said Bill Brand, HSN executive vice president of programming, marketing and business development.

“With their HSN ID pack they can shop for new discoveries from all their favorite HSN brands including Twiggy London, Grace by Molly Sims, IMAN and Todd English while on-the-go,” Brand said. “Our pack includes live HD video, our Today’s Special, the last 15 items aired and quick and easy access to shop new arrivals and customer picks.”

Sprint said it is teaming with some of the best brands in the United States.

“As the market for mobile applications expands, mobile users want a simpler way to access the data most relevant to their needs at that time,” Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said in a canned statement. “Sprint ID offers unprecedented customization and personalization. Businesses will be able to deliver innovative, customized resources on mobile devices to their employees. We have an outstanding group of partners – some of the best brands in the U.S. – helping us deliver this new mobile experience to consumers.”

“Sprint ID is another innovative Sprint ‘first’ which revolutionizes the wireless customer experience, and it’s a new way to leverage our open mobile strategy.”

Sprint ID packs — complete with apps, widgets, ringtones and business tools tailored to a specific interest — aim to allow brands to connect directly and build relationships with their customers. To translate that to English, one example will allow users to easily switch between English- or Spanish-language. Others are specifically tailored to the customers’ business or line of work.

Sprint ID packs will launch on three Android handsets – Sanyo Zio™, Samsung Transform™ and LG Optimus S™. The ID packs are built using the Android platform and will work across various manufacturers.

Sprint customers can customize their device with up to five ID packs. Once an ID is loaded – in one quick step and free with a select service plan – users can further customize it with additional apps and content. ID packs can be easily switched out without customers losing the apps and content they value most.

There are a range of lifestyle packs, plus Yahoo!, EA and business packs, which will be immediately available with more packs rolling out in this quarter and beyond.

In addition to name-brand packs, non-branded pack examples include Entertainment; Socially Connected; Health and Fitness; Business Productivity; Fashion and Beauty; Auto Enthusiast; and Golf Enthusiast

‘The Insider’ Goes Inside HSN, But Not Too Far

October 20, 2010

Lara Spencer chatted up Wolfgang Puck at HSN's studios

Yippee, as we’ve noted before, the traditional media has finally figured out that home shopping is not still about selling can openers and cubic zirconia anymore. Jeez, even Oprah Winfrey shops on HSN! (We’ll explain later.)

CNN woke up and made it official when it did a segment on QVC’s large role in Fashion Week in Manhattan this year. And this week “The Insider” sent the vapid and extremely annoying Lara Spencer down to HSN’s headquarters in St. Petersburg, Fla., to do a story on how celebrities are flocking to sell goods on home shopping networks.

The story was a couple of minutes, which for “The Insider” is like an investigative report, even though it stated the obvious to anyone who knows the home shopping industry. But it was a great plug for HSN, that’s for sure.

The segment showed a clip of Liza Minnelli’s disastrous appearance, and there were also interviews with celebrity chef and pot peddler Wolfgang Puck, as well as Bill Brand, HSN’s executive vice president of programming, marketing and business development.

The segment said that HSN started in 1977 on AM radio selling electronic can openers. While there was once a “stigma” to appear on HSN, now celebs are calling the TV network to get on, we’re told.

“This world had changed and it’s been focused on finding those personalities that are popular, that are interesting but also very credible and authentic and are experts in their field,” Brand said to Spencer.

Spencer noted that Puck would be on the air for 10 hours, “not a single minute of it with a teleprompter,” the day she was in Florida shooting her segment.

“Welcome to a very tasty HSN,” Puck told Spencer.

She noted that as Puck was selling his cookware, HSN producers were watching how many people were calling in and buying, and then they told Puck through his earpiece whether to keep talking or move on.

There was also a clip of Sean “Diddy” Combs from his appearance on the home shopping network to sell his fragrance.

“I made it,” Combs said. “I’m on HSN, Ma.”

His fragrance, “I Am King,” sold out in 14 minutes, product that was meant to last for a two-hour show.

Brand also talked about singer Mary J. Blige debuting her new perfume exclusively on HSN. “That was really a first for the business,” he said.

“The Insider” also showed Oprah Winfrey calling in while Blige was on the air on HSN.

“I am supporting her and waiting on my shower gel,” Winfrey told Blige and HSN host Callie Northagen.

“You even have Oprah shopping on HSN, so it’s no surprise that HSN brings in $2 billion a year in revenue,” somebody whose name we didn’t catch said.

As for Spencer, she told us “it is not your grandmother’s HSN.”

No sh-t.

HSN Teams With TLC, Kelly Ripa For New ‘Homemade Millionaire’ TV Show

October 12, 2010

It looks like HSN is dipping its toe in the traditional TV programming business, by joining forces with TLC and Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos’ company, Milojo Productions, on a six-part series that gives women entrepreneurs a chance to make their visions reality.

The show, “Homemade Millionaire,” debuts Nov. 19 at 10 p.m., and in part will feature HSN vendors like Emeril Lagasse and jean queen Diane Gilman.

“The series offers aspiring female entrepreneurs the potential opportunity of a lifetime – to have their innovative ideas sold on-air and online through interactive multichannel retailer HSN,” the press release Monday said. “With product sales on HSN topping $2 billion a year, a deal with HSN could change these women’s lives overnight.”

Here are the canned quotes, folks.

“We are super excited to be working with TLC and HSN on this project,” Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos said, apparently in remarkable unison. “We’re sent so many innovative products from women every day, and to be able to help them get into the marketplace is a dream come true for us. These inventors have worked so hard in this show. We’re beyond proud of them.”

And from TLC…

“’Homemade Millionaire’ provides an opportunity to those ‘kitchen-table inventors’ to get their creative ideas out to the masses,” Nancy Daniels, TLC’s senior of production and development, said. “We are thrilled to be partnering with Kelly and Milojo Productions, and believe HSN is the perfect outlet for these hard-working women to showcase their inventions.”

Each hour-long episode of “Homemade Millionaire” will follow three women competing for a chance to sell their inventions on HSN.

Open calls were held throughout the country, and thousands of women showed up with their unique products in hand, with the hopes of being part of this experience.

“We are very excited to work with Kelly Ripa and TLC to help these inventors realize their dreams,” Bill Brand, HSN executive vice president of programming, marketing and business development said in his canned statement. “HSN is all about great products and amazing storytellers and that is what this series will deliver to our customers.”

The inventors were had to perform a series of tasks designed to get their product ready for consumers. Helping Ripa coach these women are two “business experts,” Wendy Robbins and Ed Evangelista, who serve as mentors for these would-be business women as they evolve their product and build a unique marketing strategy to present to HSN.

Wendy Robbins, founder of Nowhere To Millionaire LLC and author of “Why Marry a Millionaire? Just Be One!”, worked her way out of debt to make millions with her invention the Tingler head massager. She is also a leading expert on mastering the millionaire mindset, and how to manufacture and market ideas to millions.

Ed Evangelista became the first advertising executive embedded into entertainment content when he served as a judge, juror, and executioner on ABC’s “American Inventor.” Evangelista has created award-winning advertising, marketing and alternative content for some of the world’s largest consumer brands from diamonds and liquors, to automobiles, finance and bubble gum.

Alongside Ripa on the judges’ panel are two HSN executives – Jennifer Cotter, senior vice president of television, and Chris Nicola, vice president of product development – who draw upon their vast experience in television and retail to evaluate each product.

Each episode also features HSN vendors and lifestyle journalists including Emeril Lagasse, Jennifer Flavin-Stallone, Colin Cowie, Ingrid Hoffmann, Diane Gilman, Stacey Schieffelin, Jeffrey Banks, James Mischka and Mark Badgley, Skip Borghese, Carolyn Forte, Good Housekeeping Research Institute, Allie Lewis, food editor, Real Simple Magazine and Lori Bergamotto, fashion editor for Lucky Magazine

“Homemade Millionaire” is produced by Milojo Productions and Discovery Studios for TLC.

Mary J. Blige Breaks Records On HSN, Which Stiffed Us, By Selling More Than 60,000 Bottles Of ‘My Life’ Perfume

August 3, 2010

What took so long, HSN? We were expecting this Mary J. Blige press release by Monday, at the latest.

We watched some of her shows, and had heard that singer Blige shattered sales records Saturday with the debut of her new fragrance, My Life, exclusively on HSN.

And by the way, why weren’t we among the bloggers invited to the launch — which we found about in the release? Was it too packed with the hundreds of home shopping bloggers that inhabit the cyber world? Thanks for stiffing us, Bill Brand. What happened? You didn’t like our Miss-Tina-is-gone blog, and wanted some payback? Or was it the ShopNBC-Had-The-Same-Ring-As-HSN blog that did it?

Anyway, we finally got the long-expected HSN press release early Tuesday night, which said, “Mary J. Blige’s My Life fragrance on July 31 drove the sale of more than 60,000 units with about 6 hours of air time, shattering fragrance records at HSN for units sold and placing the launch amongst the most successful in the prestige fragrance market.”

Here’s the canned quote from Blige, who was humble, gorgeous, delightful and charming on the air.

“I am thrilled with the success of My Life, the experience on HSN with Carol’s Daughter and the overwhelming donations to FFAWN,” Nine-time Grammy Award winner Blige (or HSN’s PR department) said. “I can’t wait to share another touch of my heart. Thank you to all my fans – new and old – for being there for me.”

The launch of My Life helped support the Foundation of the Advancement of Women Now (FFAWN), a non-profit created by Blige and Chairman & and lead investor of Carol’s Daughter, Steve Stoute, to assist women in need. For every unit of My Life fragrance sold, HSN Cares, the corporate social responsibility arm of the home shopping network, will donate $1 to FFAWN.

“The groundbreaking success of My Life on HSN changes the existing business model for a prestige fragrance launch and reinforces our role as a retail innovator,” HSN CEO Mindy Grossman said in her canned statement. “We were thrilled that Mary’s inspiring story, her character, and, ultimately, her fragrance drew such an enthusiastic response.”

My Life, which was the first fragrance created by Ms. Blige and the first celebrity fragrance developed by beauty-lifestyle brand Carol’s Daughter, attracted nearly 20 percent new customers to HSN. In addition, as part of HSN’s continuity program, almost 10,000 customers signed up to receive shipments of the new fragrance on a regular basis.

“This launch proves that consumers are looking for new ways to engage with a brand,” said Stoute, who was the macher who put together Blige and HSN. “Long gone are the days of traditional marketing that rely only on sampling and advertising. Consumers want to connect, believe and immerse themselves in the experience. They want to see themselves fit into the story. “Mary delivered herself in the purest form outside of her lyrics. We look forward to telling the next chapter of the story on HSN in the near future.”

Carol’s Daughter, a partner of HSN over the last two years, has had success in telling its universally appealing story, about the creation of the beauty products in a home kitchen. Given this success, Stoute and Blige committed to bring their story to HSN.

“HSN gave me a unique platform to tell my story,” Blige said. “It took time — I had to find a place that allowed me to be me. I never do something that I don’t believe in. My Life presented by Carol’s Daughter on HSN was the only way to show my fans another labor of love.”

My Life was introduced to consumers via the most comprehensive, 360-degree marketing campaign in HSN’s history, including television, online, mobile, print advertising, public relations, events and direct mail. Social media efforts drove millions of impressions, key celebrity endorsements, and involved a blogger press trip to HSN headquarters to document the launch.

That’s the part where we were stiffed.

Video segments of Blige’s life story were featured on HSN and online at http://www.HSN.com, as well as Facebook and Twitter. In addition, HSN distributed 100,000 direct mail brochures and 300,000 targeted inserts to its customers; featured ads in Allure, Glamour and Essence; created a cross-channel spot; and distributed 50,000 snap bracelets embedded with the My Life fragrance at the Essence Music Festival.

“The fragrance industry is excited to explore the opportunities of new channels of distribution with supportive, creative and innovative partners like HSN,” Rochelle Bloom, president of The Fragrance Foundation, said in a canned statement. “The success of Mary J. Blige’s fragrance and her personal message proves their power to reach out and entice a vast, broad consumer who loves and wants fragrance. Bravo HSN and Mary J.!”

The Homeshoppingista Gets A Peek At HSN’s New Manhattan Penthouse Offices, And We Meet Mindy

June 17, 2010

Artist Michael Vollbracht, who created a clothing line for HSN, did four paintings for its New York offices that feature a flower motif from one of his scarves for the home shopping network

We got to visit HSN’s spanking new offices in Manhattan, and they are some pretty stylish, should we say swank, digs.

HSN had off-the-record meetings with the press Thursday, us included. HSN EVP of programming, marketing and business development Bill Brand invited us in.

Brand is a broadcast/cable veteran who got his programming chops at local TV stations, as well as both VH1 — working for Jeff Gaspin, who is now chairman of NBC Universal Television Entertainment — and at Lifetime Television.

Brand was hired by HSN CEO Mindy Grossman shortly after she arrived at the home shopping channel to shake it up.

We can’t tell you the content of what Brand told us about HSN’s plans (as we said, it was off the record, and if anyone else writes it, we’re coming after Bill). We’d love to relate what Brand had to say about the second network that HSN is launching, the just-announced HSN2. But we can’t. But Brand said we could blog about the new offices.

Bill Brand

Just a few weeks ago the No. 2 home shopping network moved its Big Apple staff from the quarters of the channel’s former owner, Barry Diller’s IAC, to a building on 55th Street, right off Madison Avenue. The building, across the street from the legendary Friar’s Club, is being renovated. The construction permits were in the lobby window.

Brand got programming experience under now-NBC honcho Jeff Gaspin

HSN’s corporate headquarters and TV studios remain in steamy St. Petersburg, Fla., land of the large flying water bugs and hair-frizzing humidity. That’s why we no likey Florida.

But HSN has always had some staff in New York City, and the airy new space with the Madison Avenue address (even though the entrance is on 55th) will serve as a fine venue for the network to host product previews for the press and to meet with its growing list of Manhattan designers and vendors, people like the red-carpet Badgley Mischka team and Iman.

HSN’s got the building’s penthouse duplex, with a great view of the city and a huge terrace.

The space is wide open, and everything is white. There is some artwork on the walls. Four paintings by artist Michael Vollbacht, who has done a clothing collection for HSN, hang near the entrance of the penthouse. But furniture and other decorations are still being brought in.

As we chatted with Brand, HSN CEO Mindy Grossman stopped by. It’s the first time we met her, and she was very gracious, not mentioning the times we’ve poked fun at her (describing her as “cleavage-baring” and all that) in this blog. She’s obviously a pro who knows how the game is played. Any press is good press.

We finally met HSN CEO Mindy Grossman

We know we shouldn’t comment on an executive’s appearance (it’s sexist, some would say) but Grossman is striking looking. She has great style and was dressed all in black, the Manhattan uniform. She was wearing great jewelry, including two huge cuffs from Iman’s Global Chic HSN line.

Brand also introduced us to HSN chief financial officer Judy Schmeling, who is always on the network’s earnings calls. Most of the top executives at HSN are women, not middle-aged white men, as is typical in most of corporate America.

After a lot of chatter and a very quick, but delicious lunch, we were ushered out as the next group of reporters was coming in for their HSN meet-and-greet.

Our only regret is that we didn’t grab a few blondies to eat on the DeCamp bus back to Montclair.

HSN Plans Multi-Million Dollar 33rd Birthday Bash In Sin City, We Can’t Wait For Our Invite

May 23, 2010

Molly Sims will be on hand for HSN's Vegas Live Celebration

After being away in Chicago on business last week, we’re way behind and just catching up on our blogs. But HSN is apparently having a big Las Vegas blowout to celebrate its 33rd birthday, with plans to telecast there live in August. We’re all for party-hardy B-Days, especially in Sin City.

HSN announced last week that it’s teaming up with Harrah’s for the home shopping channel’s “Lucky 33 Birthday Celebration,” a multi-million dollar promotion.

The summer-long birthday event kicks off June with millions of dollars in HSN gift cards becoming available to select Harrah’s Total Rewards members through local promotions, driving members to 25 Harrah’s casino resorts across the country.

Additionally, members can visit http://www.TotalRewards.com to learn how to enter and play the HSN $185,000 Birthday Giveaway, an interactive online instant-win game and promotion that provides participants the opportunity to win even more HSN gift cards.

HSN customers can get into the act at http://www.hsn.com/vegas as HSN celebrates its 33rd birthday with giveaways, savings and special offers for an array of new merchandise that’s slated to debut in July.

Those who play the game at http://www.hsn.com will automatically be entered into a grand prize drawing featured live each night on HSN TV throughout the month of July. Grand prize winners will receive one of 62 trips for two to HSN Live in Vegas, a spectacular, star-studded HSN shopping spree at Harrah’s Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas August 14 to 15.

Jewelry designer Carol Brodie will be in Sin City to meet HSN fans

At HSN Live in Vegas, also August 14 to 15, HSN fans will have the opportunity to see some of their favorite personalities, including: celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck; Serious Skin Care founder Jennifer Flavin-Stallone; model-actress-jewelry designer Molly Sims; and inventor Joy Mangano.

All will be broadcasting live on HSN throughout the day on Saturday, August 14. In addition, attendees will be able to use HSN gift cards at eight boutique kiosks stocked with HSN merchandise.

Other personalities scheduled to attend include Susan Lucci, Tori Spelling, Carol Brodie, Debbie Meyer, Tony Little, Diane Gilman, Randolph Duke and Rhonda Shear.

Participating Harrah’s Entertainment resorts, include: Harrah’s Atlantic City, Bally’s Atlantic City, Bally’s Las Vegas, Harrah’s Cherokee, Caesars Palace, Harrah’s Council Bluffs, Flamingo, Grand Biloxi, Harrah’s Tunica, Harrah’s Atlantic City, Horseshoe Bluffs Run, Harrah’s Las Vegas, Imperial Palace, Harrah’s Joliet, Harrah’s Louisiana Downs, Harrah’s Laughlin, Harrah’s North Kansas City, Harrah’s Metropolis, Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, Paris Las Vegas, Harrah’s Reno, Harrah’s Rincon, Showboat Atlantic City, Harrah’s St. Louis and the Rio All Suites Hotel & Casino.

“HSN is constantly striving to deliver new discoveries and a great shopping experience for our customers,” Bill Brand, HSN’s executive vice president of programming, marketing and business development, said in a prepared statement. “This exciting new relationship with Harrah’s provides HSN with a highly creative and compelling marketing platform from which to launch our birthday celebration. Harrah’s has an active member base of 10 million potential customers and we look forward to introducing them to HSN.”

Jewelry Lovers Beware: Put Up With The Traffic And Hit The Malls, Not QVC, On Black Friday

November 27, 2009

Dave James

We’re not feeling QVC’s much-hyped 28-hour “New” Black Friday event. If you’re a jewelry junkie like us, it’s not your day to tune in.

First of all, as QVC CEO Mike George has said, the network has shifted its product mix to more consumer electronics goods. And that’s reflected in the three — count ’em — three Today’s Special Values that QVC has Black Friday.

They are a Sharper Image projector, a kids Playhut Travel Lounger and the lowest-priced camcorder QVC has ever offered, a Sylvania pocket camcorder at $29.

We have to admit, the inexpensive camcorder is pretty neat. And it hands-down beats HSN’s Today’s Special, a Vado HD pocket camcorder at $129.

QVC host Dave James is staying on the air for the full 28 hours of the network’s event, and at about 8 a.m. he was looking a little tired. His kids did a paper-link chain for him with 28 links, one for each hour, and he’s pulling one off as he finishes another hour.

We’re amazed at the press attention QVC’s Black Friday event has garnered. On Friday the New York Daily News did a story on QVC, HSN and ShopNBC’s and their Black Friday strategies.

QVC host Lisa Robertson, QVC vice president of marketing and programming Doug Rose and HSN executive vice president of programming Bill Brand were all quoted.

Stop The Presses: New York Daily News Discovers Celebrities Like Paula Abdul And Tori Spelling Have Lines On Home Shopping Networks Like QVC and HSN

November 8, 2009

Bill_Brand

HSN's Bill Brand

The New York Daily News has discovered that a lot of celebrities are selling products on home shopping networks like HSN and QVC. Wow, what a scoop! Who knew?

The Sunday story is headlined “NYC’s Celebrity Fashion Obsession,” and features a photo of one of Susan Lucci’s HSN necklaces.

In the piece, the Daily News says that New York consumers are skeptical of goods that have been given the stamp of a celeb. The story then quotes Bill Brand, HSN vice president of programming, marketing and business development.

“If the celebrity doesn’t have a connection to the to the product they are selling, it won’t translate,” Brand is quoted in the Daily News.

He cited health-conscious actresss Fran Drescher’s new skincare line, which is about to debut. “It was natural for her to be doing a skincare line for us and it sells,” Brand told the Daily News.

The story points out that Lucci, Paula Abdul, Rachel Zoe, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Tori Spelling, Serena Williams, Tina Knowles and Iman all have products on home shopping outlets.

The Daily News does have a tiny scoop: that designer Isaac Mizrahi’s new line for QVC premieres Dec. 4 with “plaid-covered cheesecake,” whatever that means.

By the way, Brand is never asked about the reliability, or lack of it, when dealing with stars. For example, earlier this year Spelling and Abdul were scheduled to make appearances on HSN, but those shows were abruptly cancelled, without explanation.