Talk show superstar Oprah Winfrey is one of the most well known cultural and financial icons of our time.
If you're lucky enough to create a product she loves - a mention on her show just might make you a millionaire!
CNBC's Carl Quintanilla explores The Oprah Effect and how she turns no names into brand names.
Visit the "The Oprah Effect"
Talk show superstar Oprah Winfrey is one of the most well known cultural and financial icons of our time. The Oprah Winfrey Show is the highest rated talk show in television history with an estimated 44 million viewers a week in the United States.
Those numbers translate into big sales for the products Oprah recommends.
Getting on the Oprah Winfrey show could be the biggest opportunity of someone's life. About 20 companies strike gold every year when their products are featured on Oprah's yearly "Favorite Things" show.
In 2000, Oprah chose Spanx shape wear as one of her "Favorite Things." The Atlanta-based clothing company quickly sold $50 thousand products in just three months. The company has helped millions of women feel a size smaller and made $350 million in retail sales along the way.
In 2002 and 2005, Oprah selected Garrett Popcorn as one of her favorite things. The Chicago based company had a hunch there would be a rise in sales – but not to the extent that occurred. The afternoon of the broadcast in 2002, the company had 100,000 web hits and the sales for the month of December increased by 100 percent. Garrett Popcorn went from making popcorn eight hours a day to 24 hours a day.
One of the most recent and dramatic examples of the Oprah Effect is with Kindle, a wireless reading device launched by Amazon.com. Oprah introduced the Kindle on her show on October 24, 2008 and offered a special discount code for Oprah viewers to receive $50 off of their purchase. Sales went through the roof and Kindle sold out of inventory during the 2008 holiday season.
The mention of Lori Karmel’s struggling "We Take the Cake" bakery shop on The Oprah Winfrey show in 2004 pulled her company back to life and out of bankruptcy.
Today, the company’s sales are more than $1 million a year. The ultimate icing on the cake is Lori and her team now bakes high-end wedding cakes for posh hotels that sell for $5,000 to $20,000 each.
Lisa Price has loved fragrances ever since she was a child. Her mother encouraged her to make and sell her own fragrances at a flea market more than 15 years ago.
An appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show took the small business to the world stage. Today Carol’s Daughter is a multi-million dollar company.
LAFCO's Jon Bresler and Vincent LaRouche found a 120-year-old artisanal soap factory in Europe called, Ach Brito. This great find is where LAFCO began making its long-lasting, luxurious, handmade soaps to export to the US. Once this luxury soap made it on Oprah, sales peaked over a million dollars in just 30 days. The impact of Oprah's show takes LAFCO to a whole new level of business.
Oprah also boosts many a career from Dr. Phil to Rachael Ray to Dr. Oz. Starting out as professionals in the fields of psychology, cooking or medicine, each has their own talk show and a new level of celebrity status, thanks to Oprah. Dr. Phil specifically is the author of six #1 New York Times bestsellers and is ranked the second highest-rated daytime talk show in the nation behind, of course, Oprah.
In 1996, Oprah’s career hits a pivotal landmark when she starts a book club. The book club ads another dimension to Oprah’s talk show and she’s received praise for converting a nation of viewers into a nation of readers.
Her book club recommendations have had a huge impact on publishers and authors alike. In this photo Oprah stands with Toni Morrison, author of Song of Solomon an Oprah recommended book.
What could this Chicago blogger and yoga instructor possibly have to do with Oprah? Everything. Robyn Okrant is the founder of livingoprah.com. For one entire year she conducts her living Oprah experiment and follows Oprah's every word. Okrant puts Oprah's advice to the test. The results? She gains notoriety, her blog reaches an estimated 10,000 readers a week and she has a book deal in the works.
What does it take to get on the Oprah Show? Ask Susan Harrow, the author of "The Ultimate Guide to Getting Booked on Oprah." As a successful media coach, whose phone rings off the hook with clients, she will help coach you on TV presence, how to speak in sound bites, and even how to pitch ideas to Oprah's producers. Some of Harrow's most successful clients have expanded their businesses so much that they are speaking worldwide and acquiring seven-figure book deals.