Cash in on your connections
Paris is using her family's hotel contacts and reputation to launch her own chain of hotels. Speaking to Fox News earlier this month, she said, "My next project is... involved in real estate. Just from being in the business and growing up in it my whole life, it's always something I've been interested in."
Paris Hilton's great-grandfather Conrad Hilton founded the Hilton hotel chain in 1946. Hotels are in Paris' blood - not only through the family business; she also lived in a series of hotels as a youngster. When you're looking to start a new business, stick to your knitting and go for niches that you know.
All publicity is good publicity
Before the 1 Night In Paris adult video surfaced on the internet, Paris Hilton was below the radar. The release propelled the heiress into the media stratosphere. The pornographic video, featuring Hilton and then lover Rick Salomon, caused an internet sensation in summer 2004. But it didn't do the heiress any harm in the long run. Not only was she awarded damages by the courts (the sum is undisclosed), the porno also dropped just in time for her new TV show, The Simple Life, to air in the US. The Simple Life saw unprecedented viewer figures: some 13 million Americans tuned into Fox for the show's premiere.
We're not advocating pornography as a marketing tool, but there are other ways to shock your way to free PR. Ling Valentine of Ling's Cars may not have bared all to get her company noticed, but she did mount a 'nuclear missile' on a truck to draw attention to her car leasing business. The result: tons of free publicity. Feel free to court controversy to get your name out.
Create lucrative partnerships
Paris has put her name to a number of joint venture: handbags and hair extensions among others. Of course, she is cashing in on her celebrity status, but business owners can learn from this strategy. To break a new industry, partner with an existing firm for a route to market. This will result in a minimum outlay up front and help you scout out distribution channels should you go it alone in the future.
Be seen on the scene
Paris is infamous for falling out of clubs and getting up to no good in bars across the world. But at least she is constantly in the public eye. Make sure that you stay social, be seen, and talk up your brand as often as possible. Sam Barnett, founder of ad technology firm Struq, is based in the company's HQ in Soho Square. Soho is a real hotspot for fast-growing, innovative technology firms and the CEOs often meet up to shoot the breeze - they even go on holiday together, causing a stir on the island of Brac earlier this year.
Hilton also earns a nice wedge for her party lifestyle: an appearance from Paris Hilton in your bar or club could set you back around £100,000. But, when the club owners refuse to pay up, she has been known to swing over to the party anyway, just to stay on the circuit. Learn from this 'celebutante': don't let people forget you, or your stock will plummet.
Politics is the topic du jour: whether you're discussing the Tea Party's latest antics at a dinner party, talking about the CSR cuts in the post office queue or praising the Chilean president on Twitter, politics is in vogue. Paris' 2008 presidential campaign tuned into this craze - her spoof campaign video received seven million views in the first month.
Charlie Mullins of Pimlico Plumbers isn't afraid to wear his political persuasions on his sleeve. In his blog on the Pimlico Plumbers site, he praised the government's 'tough love' strategy: "I for one want to commend the government for having the guts to stick to their guns, no matter how unpopular the medicine is. Keep up the good work - I'm sure there's plenty more fat to trim off the bone yet!"
By being vocal about his political beliefs, Mullins has become much sought after by the broadsheets - his comments have been featured in The Telegraph, The Times and The Independent. Comment on political issues of the day, network at party meetings and blog about current affairs to get your business noticed.
Picture source: Bemdevassa