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The Evolution of Brands & Artists’ Collaborations

There has been an evolution in how brands do marketing over the years. We are noticing more and more brands having partnerships or looking for potential partnerships with well-knowing artists or celebrities to help market their products. This perhaps is not something new in marketing, as we have seen it over the years when brands select an artist or celebrity to represent their brand in different forms of advertisement, however, it is the fact that brands are more conscious in their partnership selection, as well as the artist. They don’t simply want an additional paycheck; they want to represent brands that matter and that they have a personal connection with to make the partnership feel more organic to the consumer and the general audience.

Miguel Insignares Del Toro, E-Retail Marketing Manager at Bacardi when asked about his thoughts on artists and brands working together to help each other promote their interests stated: “Brands are working harder than ever to align themselves with the right artists to promote each other’s brands, songs, and image. Consumers have shifted heavily into aligning themselves with brands and artists that reflect characteristics that matter to them, from environmental consciousness to diversity and inclusion. Consumers want to know that the brand and artists they align to stand for something bigger than themselves/profits and thus finding the proper synergy between artists and brands are more important than ever.”

After further analyzing this statement Miguel raises a valid point, partnerships have turned into even a deeper cause from an artist and consumer perspective. Consumers want to align themselves with brands that represent their interests, and they follow artists that do the same. This brings me to our next statement regarding brands and artists aligning themselves with topics that have a community or environmental impact.

In this next scenario, when discussing brands and artist relationships for marketing strategies with David Alejandro Rendon, Editor in Chief at Imagen Miami magazine, said, “A perfect example of an artist trying to help promote her brand and image is Selena Gomez with her Rare Beauty line.” Selena Gomez is the founder and creator of Rare Beauty, which is a makeup line sold by the giant makeup retailer Sephora. Alejandro also said that “not only is Rare Beauty a make-up brand, but it’s also a foundation that helps raise awareness on mental health illness with its Rare Impact Fund. Selena Gomez is so well known that she attracts a huge audience from all over the world. She uses her makeup line to intertwine it with the Rare Impact Fund. This is one of the most innovative things I’ve ever seen.”

In the Rare Beauty example, the interaction between the artist and the brand works seamlessly because the brand is owned by the artist. However, brands need to be very careful with whom they partner to ensure that the artist representing their brand positively promotes them and that they enjoy what they are promoting and not only see it as a partnership for monetary reasons. 

When asked about brands and artist collaborations, Lucho Escobar, Creative Director freelancer had a different perspective more inclined toward the artist’s point of view. He said that “nowadays collaborations depend on companies alone, as a creative myself is very difficult to promote yourself to a company and say this is me and this is what I do. Especially for an emerging artist is very difficult to work with recognized brands and even more difficult to do collaborations where the brand will promote a product by the artist. Smaller brands are more open to collaborating with artists but lack the budget to create a relevant income for the artist as they mostly rely on product purchases.”

This brings us to Yenisey De Armas, Brand Manager at Bacardi for D’USSÉ Cognac who stated that “Chemistry between a brand and an artist is crucial since consumers can spot a phony a mile away. These partnerships help brands drive awareness and reach consumers, but to achieve success authenticity is key. Our best campaigns have resulted from partnering with artists that are already consumers of the brand. They bring new interactions and rituals with the brand that feels organic and become aspirational once shared with their fanbase. It’s a win-win for the artist who gets the support of a product they already enjoy and for the brand who reaches a fanbase they may not have been able to on their own.”

Similar to what Yenisey mentioned about brands and artists partnerships, Natasha A. Schoultz, Marketing and Communications Professional at Interstate Batteries said that “Brands have the opportunity to showcase their product and mark their relevance in pop culture by collaborating with artists that can boost their value and authenticity in the eyes of consumers. Likewise, the artists they team up with can reach a wider audience by partnering with recognized brands, in turn boosting their clout while also being paid for their collaboration’s image use rights. It’s a win-win when done right – brands get a buzz just by redesigning a logo or label on a product that’s already known by consumers and artists have the chance to expand their reach and build their portfolio.”

In this article, we have seen different marketing expert perspectives on how brands and artists are working together to help each other promote their brands, songs, and image. We have read about the importance of brands showing consumers the impact they have from environmental consciousness to diversity and inclusion. As well as the impact that a brand and artists can have with a philanthropic relationship with their consumers, and finally the very valuable perspective of artists trying to win those collaborations with brands, and when attainable could be a win-win for both brands and artists.

After reading this, I would love to find out your thoughts as a marketer on how artists and brands can continue working together to have a beneficial partnership with a great marketing strategy behind it.

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