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Bette vs. Joan

Turner Classic Movies is showing a Bette Davis vs. Joan Crawford film festival on June 15. The rivalry between these great actresses is almost as famous as their work. A rivalry that helped to fuel their performances in the only film they ever worked on together, the infinitely creepy “What Ever Happened to Baby Jane” (1962). Rappers have exploited personal rivalries for years to boost record sales. Companies have tried to capitalize on rivalries to their detriment. The most important thing rivalries do is that they get people talking. Rivalries created by marketing departments are just as tricky; the downside being that if you lose the public humiliation can take a while to get over. How important are public rivalries in creating a brand? Should companies ignore or engage the enemy? What are your favorite corporate rivalries?

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