”Mid-September: Mattel launches the Hammer doll…Oct. 7: ‘Too Legit to Quit’ single and video released to multi-radio formats…Oct. 28: ‘This Is the Way We Roll’ single and video released…Oct. 29: Too Legit to Quit album released worldwide. December: Too Legit to Quit home video and laserdisc released…December: Pepsi TV commercials featuring ‘Too Legit to Quit’ start running.”
When Capitol Records calls Hammer ”arguably the most valuable music franchise today,” it’s not kidding. The above list is merely part of the Operation Desert Storm-like marketing strategy behind Too Legit to Quit — a campaign that, Capitol says, is ”designed to ensure the new album locks up the No. 1 album chart slot, from release through Christmas and into next year.” The plan also incorporates an ABC-TV special in November, the Hammerman cartoon show, and three Hammer songs in the upcoming movie The Addams Family.
”Hammer is this great big marketing machine,” says Lou Mann, senior vice president of sales at Capitol. ”He’s got the cartoon, the record, the doll, and sponsorship deals. If Hammer decides to talk about the doll on The Arsenio Hall Show, we won’t discourage or encourage it.” Actually, the doll made its television debut Oct. 7 when the rapper’s ”Too Legit to Quit” video debuted on MTV and other video outlets.