Celebrity branding themselves is nothing surprising. It is an industry where personalities thrive on how much people know them and like their work. Personal branding can make the life of a celebrity much easier. Because a good personal brand affinity from their audience will help them sell even when their books, movies or music do not really cut the mark. Moreover a good personal brand will attract a lot of attention and hype (thereby ensuring success) when they venture into their own enterprises of restaurants, publishing or TV shows etc. While some celebrities are simply popular because of their work, their are some who have gone the extra mile to create a killer personal brand that can always be milked for profit and influence.
The best in Celebrity Personal Branding
If there is a genius at celebrity branding, it is Lady Gaga. She has the quirkiest look in the industry and makes some real good music. Lady Gaga is the fine example of excellent branding where people would be attracted to her music purely because of the enigma she exudes. A lot of people talk about her just because of her weird dressing style.
[quote]People ask me why I wear veils. I reply, I’m mourning. Mourning what? Well I figure something shitty must be going on somewhere.’[/quote]
A marketing expert, who works for Impact Branding & Design, believes that the publicity and direct connection the singer has nurtured with fans through the site helps boost her earning potential. He also believes it makes her audience less susceptible to downloading or streaming.
Oprah Winfrey has been named one of the most powerful women in the planet. She has this distinctive personal brand like no other celebrity. In fact, many celebrities take great comfort in talking to her and would prefer to share their secrets and vulnerabilities with her. Oprah worked in Baltimore as a reporter and co-anchor for WJZ-TV after her graduation. By 2000, she was a multi-millionaire and launched a magazine called “”O: The Oprah Magazine,” the most successful magazine start-up in history.
If you want a blueprint to build a personal brand, Oprah Winfrey is the woman to learn from.
If you hear this guy speak, Stallone won’t seem like the brightest person in the room. But the guy was able to brand himself as this macho muscle man with a soft heart. One of the main reasons why Rocky series took off was because of the sympathy the audience had for the character, where Sylvester Stallone played the talented fighter who lacked street smart and won purely on efforts.
He went on and appeared on the cover a fitness magazine called Sly. Sly intended to help guys “stay in the game past 40“; and Stallone also marketed his own line of high-protein pudding.
For a man with three degrees in Psychology and starting his career as a Psychiatrist, getting on a TV show and being adviser to Oprah Winfrey must be pretty awesome. One episode on the Oprah show and Phil was able to establish a personal brand. His appearance proved so successful that he began appearing weekly as a “Relationship and Life Strategy Expert” on Tuesdays starting in April 1998. Soon after, he published his first best-selling book, Life Strategies. And also started his TV show titled Dr. Phil. In 2003, McGraw entered the weight-loss business and also started writing his biography. All on the strength of his personal brand.
Who doesn’t love this guy? From Pursuit of Happyness to Party Starter. What makes him dear to the audience are his firm roots to the ground. He has endeared himself to many with his insightful quotes such as,
[quote]Too many people spend money they haven’t earned, to buy things they don’t want, to impress people they don’t like.[/quote]
Will Smith is a personal brand power house where the people really trust him. President Barack Obama has stated that if a film were to ever be made about his life, he would have Smith play his part, because “he has the ears”. Obama stated that the two have discussed a possibility of a film based on the 2008 election, but this may not happen until the end of the Obama presidency.
No doubt, a handsome face always helps. But its not the only thing that helps you tick in the industry. Timberlake was once upon a time known as Britney’s girlfriend, and with his sheer commitment to a personal brand power; today, he is a personality in himself. In 2009, he was made the face of Audi A1 campaign. Then he went on to venture into his own chain of restaurants, brand of Tequila and clothing line.
We apologize to all the Beiber haters for including him here. But again, this list of celebrities who are great at personal branding will not be complete without Justin Beiber. The kid who is worth $53 million today and named among the top 3 wealthiest celebrities, has some serious brand talent. Music alone would not cut it to take a 17-year old to such spectacular international superstardom.
[quote]“They found him by us simply letting him introduce himself over the internet, like any other teenager would. They built his brand through word-of-mouth.” – Manager Scooter Braun[/quote]
Not necessarily known for being a gentleman, but for a guy who started out his career in 1996, he has really turned the tables of his career fortunes by 2010. Through sheer attention grabbing personal brand. Today Kanye is one of the most well-known rappers around the globe. Besides his music, however, West maintains a very high-profile brand for his public disagreements and competitions with other rappers, like 50 Cent. West started a venture of burger chain called FatBurger and a shoe line with Louis Vuitton.
Sacha Baron Cohen
The actor of Borat fame, with movies like Ali G in his portfolio. His eccentric acting abilities along with the unorthodox characters he comes up with are amazing. Baron Cohen’s characters interact with unsuspecting people who do not realise they are being set up for comic situations and self-revealing ridicule. His movies are a great watch for anyone with a decent sense of humor. Baron is indeed one of the best examples for celebrities who are great at personal branding.
Paris Hilton as the ultimate example of someone who’s turned her fame into a strong personal brand. As much as we may try to avoid Paris, she is tough to ignore. Once only famous for being an heiress and appearing in not-so-appropriate films, she has parlayed her celebrity into record deals, reality shows, a hairpiece line, a watch line and six successful lines of perfume. That is a lot of success for someone who in general, just considered dumb.