American culture is saturated with popular shows, movies, music and sporting events -- but only a handful manage to really permeate mainstream consciousness. And though there are many ways to make money in the $771 billion dollar entertainment industry, cultural phenomena like HBO's Game of Thrones, the Super Bowl, and Hamilton -- wildly divergent though they are -- offer lessons for entrepreneurs who aspire to replicate, or surpass, their success.

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Even if you've never seen a single episode of the series, you likely know millions of people watched the recent finale of the seventh season of Game of Thrones. Episodes throughout this season averaged a staggering 30 million viewers. And the finale was, in no uncertain terms, an event everyone seemed to be talking about, both on and off social media and in countless print and online publications. The show has earned HBO $2.973 billion in quarterly revenue as of Q2 2017. Expect viewership and revenue to continue to rise with the highly anticipated final season to air this spring.

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