Hustler: Revitalizing a 45 Year-Old Brand

For the uninitiated, Hustler is a beloved adult publication that American men have been buying for the articles since 1974. Founded by Larry Flynt, the magazine has survived cultural shifts, technological advances, and the death of print media. However, it’s far from immortal. Hustler has been plagued by controversy and legal battles since its inception, primarily due to its more abrasive persona (compared to its peers, eg. Playboy). In such a delicate day and age, it’s only a matter of time until Hustler messes with the wrong guy.

It’s hard to avoid the elephant in the room: we’re talking about pretty explicit content here. You need to realize that despite the obvious reputation companies like Hustler have, there is careful business and marketing behind every major decision they’ve made. Larry Flynt is worth about $500 million, which primarily came from Hustler over the years. Acquiring the publication may be more trouble than it’s worth, so an acquisition is likely out of the question. It would be unwise for Hustler to rebrand, especially with the recent trendiness of the word.

The solution is clear: Hustler must retain its independence while voluntarily seeking acquisition by another publication. The two companies would be able to reduce costs by consolidating resources and promote a synergistic environment.

Hustler x Businessweek: Real Hustleporn

By following the millennial interest in entrepreneurship and creative freelancing, Hustler will revitalize itself for its target audience. Presenting informative content on economic issues this appealing way will increase attention to personal finances across multiple demographics. Even advanced concepts like asset backed securities, indifference curves, and liquidity traps can naturally fall into Hustler’s past media formats. Modern concepts regarding sexual identity would also maximize Hustler’s impact as it could target new audiences with niche content.

Businessweek, now is a perfect opportunity to extend an olive branch to Larry Flynt’s empire and join voices. Educate today’s young adults, prove the world that it’s better than pictures on your phone, and make finance sexy again. Stay big.

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