Celebrity Conglomerates.

Our cultural attraction to celebrity continues to fuel the creation of celebrity conglomerates. Celebrities are no longer just entertainers, rather many have become full-fledged brands and businesses in their own right, hiring big business players to expand their brands beyond the screen and stage. No longer are celebrities working through middlemen, simply licensing their names to grow others’ businesses; now, rather, they are building and crafting these companies and personal brands themselves.

Take these many examples (see the Pinterest board here):

  • Gwyneth Paltrow was one of the first to forge a path into the lifestyle business with Goop. She recently hired the former CEO of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Lisa Gersh, to continue to grow the brand, recently releasing Goop’s next evolution of itself.
  • Jessica Alba was also an early player and is another young star who has successfully demonstrated her talent beyond the screen. As co-founder of the highly successful The Honest Company, Alba continues to be involved and guides the company in partnership with CEO, Christopher Gavigan, someone who in contrast to most CEO’s harkens from the non-profit world.
  • Reese Witherspoon is not just producing and starring in movies, she, too, this year hired former C. Wonder president, Andrea Hyde, to help launch Draper James, Witherspoon’s new lifestyle business, yet to be launched.
  • Ellen DeGeneres has also tapped the C. Wonder pool partnering with Chris Burch himself to launch her own lifestyle and design brand this holiday season. A lover of design, DeGeneres wants to bring her style into your home beyond her TV show.
  • Blake Lively launched her website this year, demonstrating her passion for all things made in the U.S.A. and her desire to bring something of her own into the world.
  • Kate Hudson released her new line of affordable workout clothes, Fabletics, with a fresh TV advertising campaign this holiday season.

Shall I go on? How do traditional brands compete against this? Does this make celebrity partnerships a must? Where do celebrities have power in purchase decisions?

Culture Forecast: Help us have what they have; help us live a life like a celebrity.




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