linked in facebook twitter rss

  • Interbrand
  • Brandchannel

your chance!
your chance!
Also of interest
     
  Michael Stone Is Bieber Fever Contagious?
by Michael Stone
May 27, 2011

First of all, is it even necessary that Justin Bieber conquer the tween boys’ market? Isn’t the tween girls’ market enough? True, there is plenty of revenue to be generated in the wake of “Bieber Fever” by targeting only a female demographic. He’s essentially created a cottage industry around his appeal to pre-adolescent girls. But, we should remind ourselves that he is only 17 years old.

 
 

From a long-term sustainability perspective, there will come a time when it makes sense for him to expand to an older and more diverse demographic. And that begins with showing he can get a following among tween boys. Furthermore, the tween girl market is a crowded field, while on the other hand, retailers are consistently clamoring for something to serve the boys’ market, where there’s a lot of white space.

With Justin Bieber’s fan base largely consisting of tween girls, does it pose a challenge for him in terms of where he can license the Bieber brand? History is filled with stories of child stars that never got beyond a niche appeal, so the concern is a valid one. However, Bieber does seem to be doing a good job of expanding.

His Super Bowl commercial with Ozzy Osbourne was well received and his Saturday Night Live and MTV Music Award vignettes were fun and showed the kind of attitude advertisers appreciate. But, because his fan base is mostly female at the moment, it makes sense for his licensing deals to target this group. And so far that seems to be the approach the brand is taking.

For example, his nail polish has been wildly popular since its December launch, he has just launched Someday, a perfume, and I would expect that other traditional “pop sensation” licensing deals such as bedding, posters, trading cards and dolls will also be a great success. (It would be terrific if someone figured out how to trademark his haircut, including its more cropped update. It seems like every high school teenager is sporting the Bieber hairstyle. At least they aren’t asking their barber for the Pauly D!)

I would imagine apparel and accessories are right around the corner for Bieber. There are many unisex products through which he can target both male and female fans, like sunglasses, sneakers, watches and hats. I can see a line of Justin Bieber-branded Wayfarers, perhaps in collaboration with Ray Ban.

Boys’ apparel would require somewhat of a transformation, á la Justin Timberlake, who was in a famous boy band in 1998 and didn’t have a clothing line until 2005, which was launched under the William Rast brand, not his own name. As for how he could make that transformation, he’d do well to follow the other Justin — Timberlake that is —who has laid out a pretty good road map. NSYNC wasn’t outrageously popular with male teenagers, but his William Rast clothing line seems to be doing quite well with both sexes.

Bieber needs to stay relevant – which he shouldn’t have a problem with – and showcase his talents in other arenas. Acting roles in Alpha Dog and The Social Network have broadened Timberlake’s fan base significantly. It looks as if Bieber is taking the same approach with his pursuit of acting gigs, CSI in particular. He has proven that he has box office appeal—grossing over $30 million in the opening weekend of his biographical film Never Say Never—so it is only a matter of time before Hollywood producers come knocking for feature films. He’ll have to pass on the obvious “teen heartthrob roles” and continue to pursue edgier roles in order to eventually broaden his appeal.

However, a word of caution — maintaining popularity and relevance in the media will be much easier than maintaining relevance in consumer products. The retail shelves are littered with the remnants of very famous celebrities (who are still very famous), but who no longer resonate with consumers. There’s always a fresh crop of celebrities waiting in the wings.

 
   
   Michael Stone in CEO and President of the Beanstalk Group.



 
 commenting closed Add Social Bookmark bookmark  print
 suggest topic  recommend ( 3 )  email

  brandchannel brandspeak archive   2014  |  2013  |  2012  | 2011  |  2010  |  2009  |  2008  |  2007  |  2006  |  2005  |  2004  |  2003  |  2002  |  2001
 
 
Dec 22, 2011 Pan Am Lives - Every Dead Brand's Dream -- Michael Stone
  A deeper look into Pan Am by Michael Stone
   
 
Dec 5, 2011 The Generational Effect - Customer Loyalty across the Generations -- Howard Lax
  A look into customer loyalty
   
 
Nov 18, 2011 Play: Bringing Virtual & Real Worlds Together -- Ted Mininni
  A deep look into bringing virtual and real worlds together
   
 
Nov 11, 2011 Putting a Mark on Sustainable Luxury -- Diana Verde Nieto
  How to help consumers make informed decisions about sustainable brands?
   
 
Nov 4, 2011 In a Crowded Daily Deals Market, Attention to Detail Counts -- Kara Trivunovic
  With 680+ daily deal providers now peddling everything from discounts on high fashion to high adventure travel packages, the market is reaching a tipping point. Here’s how to stand out
   
 
Oct 27, 2011 Brand Iraq and the Arab Spring -- Lisa Knight
  A deeper look into the identity of the Iraqi nation
   
 
Oct 21, 2011 The Power of 8: Eight Elements to Address When Researching Multicultural Audiences -- Favio Martinez
  Research can validate or disprove our marketing and communications assumptions. Done correctly, it can uncover the actionable audience insights that serve as the foundation for killer business solutions.
   
 
Oct 14, 2011 Start Measuring What Matters -- Brian Chiger
   
 
Oct 7, 2011 Thank You, Steve Jobs -- Melissa Davis
  A tribute on the Apple co-founder's passing, by Truebranding's Melissa Davis
   
 
Sep 30, 2011 Linkable Offers - A Redemption Revolution -- Kim Riedell
  A deeper look into online coupon companies
   
 
Sep 23, 2011 Virtual Events – Aligning Environment, Content, Audience and Technologies for Superior Branding Impact -- Michael LaRocco
  A look into Virtual Events by Michael LaRocco
   
 
Sep 16, 2011 Back to the Future – Marketing to the New Majority -- Ola Mobolade
  Ola Mobolade shares three important lessons marketers can learn from the history of multicultural media and marketing in America
   
 
Sep 9, 2011 Color Trademarks: A Black Future for Red Soles? -- Gabriela Salinas
  Deloitte global brand manager Gabriela Salinas looks at trademarking colors and the Christian Louboutin case.
   
 
Sep 2, 2011 Successes, Failures and Counterfeits: Western Brands in China -- Matt Train
  The perceptions and misperceptions of Western brands in China.
   
 
Aug 26, 2011 Leveraging Consumer Engagement to Fight Product Counterfeiting -- Greg Miller
  To fight counterfeiting, build customer engagement into the authentication solution.
   
 
Aug 19, 2011 Steps to Successful B2B Communications -- Hope Picker
  Insights on Successful B2B Brand Communications
   
 
Aug 12, 2011 London’s Grief -- Melissa Davis
  London-based Melissa Davis on why the UK is not a broken society.
   
 
Aug 5, 2011 What’s in a Name? -- Lisa Knight
  The founder of the Brand Foundation on the political implications of naming.
   
 
Jul 29, 2011 Absolut Genius -- John Bell
  John Bell on how Absolut Vodka as kept its cool.
   
 
Jul 22, 2011 Cheering On Brand Japan, the “New Cinderella” -- Eileen Wacker
  The view from Hawaii on Japan's victory in the Women's World Cup.
   
 
Jul 14, 2011 Product Placement in the UK: A Progress Report -- John Barnard
  NMG chairman John Barnard on the challenges facing product placement’s growth in the UK
   
 
Jul 8, 2011 Japanese Lessons: In Crisis, Take the Offensive -- Karen Attyah
  Crisis management lessons from Japan
   
 
Jul 1, 2011 Have Brands Lost Their Cachet? -- Ted Mininni
  A look into branding and brand value by Ted Mininni
   
 
Jun 24, 2011 Why Entrepreneurs Need Smarter Brands -- Julie Cottineau
  Why entrepreneurs need to spend mroe time and energy in defining and pressure testing their Brand Idea.
   
 
Jun 17, 2011 Why iCloud is Apple’s Achilles’ heel -- Olof Schybergson
  The iCloud service shows a drift towards software development for Apple, and less towards their shiny nice products.
   
 
Jun 14, 2011 Next Summer’s Blockbuster Coming from an App Near You? -- Michael Stone
  Beanstalk's Michael Stone on Moshi Monsters, Angry Birds and other hot properties at the 2011 Licensing International Expo
   
 
Jun 8, 2011 The Tragic Fall from Specialist to Generalist: Starbucks, the Latest Victim -- John Bell
  An in depth article about Starbucks going from specialist to generalist.
   
 
Jun 3, 2011 The Future of Customer Insights -- Amanda Yates
  A closer look into the future of customer insights
   
 
May 20, 2011 10 Ways to Make the Most of Mobile Marketing -- Jeff Judge
  Signal CEO Jeff Judge on boosting the ROI of mobile marketing.
   
 
May 13, 2011 Pharma Branding and Pharma Marketing: The Keys to Success -- Dr. Gary Wield
  Dr. Gary Wield on the brave new world for pharmaceutical marketing.
   
 
May 5, 2011 How to Build Long-Lasting Relationships with Your Customers Online -- Zephrin Lasker
  Zephrin Lasker takes a look at how to build long-lasting relationships with online customers
   
 
May 3, 2011 Animation and Overseas Deals: All in a Day’s Work for LeBron James, Inc. -- Patrick Kerns
  Interbrand’s Patrick Kerns assesses the global branding strategy of LeBron James Inc.
   
 
Apr 29, 2011 Good Brands Gone Bad -- John Bell
  How brands recover from a crisis defines their essence.
   
 
Apr 15, 2011 The Anatomy of a Great Ad - Mark Bilfield
  Mark Bilfield reviews the winners in TED’s first Ads Worth Spreading competition to highlight what makes a great ad.
   
 
Apr 1, 2011 INDIA Future of Change: Engaging with the World -- Amit Shahi
  Amit Shahi, project director of INDIA Future of Change, on India’s nation branding
   
 
Mar 25, 2011 The Cure for a Forgotten Brand - Reinventing Luden’s -- Terri Goldstein
  The Luden’s brand story reflects the rise and fall of many heritage brands.
   
 
Mar 11, 2011 Bing Heats Up Search War for Brands -- Ben Kirshner
  How will Bing’s HTML5 impact how online consumers search for products?
   
 
Mar 4, 2011 Social Tribes are More Potent Than Social Networks -- Dr. Bob Deutsch
  Dr. Bob Deutsch argues that brand marketers’ fatal error is to think of customers as consumers, not people.
   
 
Feb 25, 2011 Between Culture & Branding - An African Perspective -- Tomi Ogunlesi
  Bates Cosse strategic planner Tomi Ogunlesi debunks the notion that consumers in Africa aren’t sophisticated.
   
 
Feb 18, 2011 Think Outside the (Blue) Box - The Role of Online Collaboration in Rebranding -- Peter Ryder
  How to avoid costly, and damaging, rebranding mistakes.
   
 
Feb 11, 2011 Trends for the New Decade -- Cheryl Swanson
  Toniq principal Cheryl Swanson weighs in on hot trends for 2011 and beyond.
   
 
Feb 4, 2011 The Secret to Real Customer Connectivity -- Ted Mininni
  A deeper look into customer connectivity with Ted Mininni
   
 
Jan 28, 2011 Advertising China -- Jay Wang
  USC professor Jay Wang on China’s branding campaign during president Hu Jintao’s state visit to the U.S.
   
 
Jan 21, 2011 Brand equity beyond the grave -- Gabriela Salinas
  A deeper look into marketing using dead celebrities by Gabriela Salinas.
   
 
Jan 14, 2011 Customer Loyalty Is Dead - Your Four Opportunities To Capture Customers Who No Longer Care Where They Buy -- Robert H. Bloom
   
 
Jan 7, 2011 The 1st Baby Boomer Turns 65 - and Why it Doesn’t Matter -- Stephen Reilly
  Born sometime in 1946, the first Baby Boomer will turn 65 this year. You can expect to hear this achievement announced repeatedly before 2011 is over.