ESPN Body Issue 2012: Ronda Rousey Will Ride New-Found Publicity to Popularity
Ronda Rousey's popularity wouldn't spike as high as it has recently if her MMA talents and ESPN Body Issue posing weren't working together—but they are.
Combined, Rousey's two highly-publicized endeavors create a double-pronged publicity machine.
Rousey is the current Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight champion, but how many people really knew that? You may have heard whispers of this violent female fighter rapidly ascending the MMA ranks, but did you remember her name?
Rousey's fighting success by itself wouldn't have propelled her into the long-term limelight, but it's dynamite when you couple it with a revealing photo shoot. That combination would be more than enough to keep Rousey in the public's eye for the foreseeable future, but she doesn't stop there.
By now, I'll assume that most of you have at least heard of this:
Rousey called out Kim Kardashian, one of the world's most preeminent socialites, at the ESPYs. That's irresistible stuff for the American public.
Today's celebrity-saturated society would eat these sound bites for every meal if they could. People love controversy, and they love it even more when the vibes are passed from one celebrity to another.
Rousey's mouth will earn her the spotlight for as long as she wants it now. She's no longer just an MMA fighter.
Now she's that MMA fighter. She's the fighter who also poses nude for ESPN's Body Issue and runs her mouth at nationally-televised award shows. How many people can claim publicity in that combination? I don't see many people, if anyone, who can stake that claim.
Rousey's 5-0 Strikeforce record is noteworthy, but it's not what will gain her popularity over the coming months. We will see the clip of her calling out one of the world's most undeserving icons time and time again.
The timing couldn't be better. Rousey's name has broken through with one perfect storm of media attention.
She will ride the events from the past two weeks to popularity she hasn't experienced before.
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