Lately, we’ve been seeing a ton of mashups among brands and celebrities or other designers:
- Gwen Stefani and Urban Decay
- MAC Cosmetics and Caitlyn Jenner
- Rihanna and Manolo Blahnik
- Pharrell and Adidas
The list goes on..
It seems like big brands that have been around for a while are venturing to find someone “current” that can help rejuvenate their brand for them and make the brand relevant to what is hopefully a strategic target audience. Often, these collabs get a good amount of media attention for a short bit, but then get forgotten. Before I go on further, I want to emphasize that I’m talking about celebrity collaborations, which result in a unique product, not celebrity endorsements which serve as promotion for an existing product. There are so many questions that many in the industry are still figuring out:
What makes a celebrity collaboration successful? How similar does the celeb’s brand and following have to be to the retailer brand? Is it better to have a one-off collaboration or an ongoing line? What’s the spectrum of the celebrity’s involvement in the creation of the collaborated product: full-on sketching the designs or is their name just slapped on? Is there a threat that the celebrity’s name on your product will cause an increase in sales and buzz that will then die down once the collab is over?
What’s a celeb collaboration that, in your opinion, failed? What’s one that’s just pure genius?