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Gaga x Amazon x Rihanna: Time To Design For A New Brand Reality


As it is reported that Lady Gaga is launching a beauty brand in partnership with Amazon, the question of brand and cultural equity is apparent.

Conventional thinking would suggest, Amazon, best known for selling discounted goods has little cultural capital to offer the Oscar-winning singer.

However, ahead of the brand launch in September 2019, the public relations address the question head-on –  “only Amazon would give her free rein to build the brand around the twin messages of self-acceptance and confidence…”

An alliance that appears strange, is, in fact, a shrewd move. When viewed as a next-Gen retailer, Amazon has the most expansive footprint for a new venture such as Gaga’s. Amazon is one of the most used searched websites in the US, over half of US households have Amazon Prime subscriptions, with 2 day shipping a key competitive advantage for the organisation.

Looking outside the beauty category – the total Amazon ecosystem also appears to be a powerful vehicle for this brand. From the predictive nature of the platform attributed to making better purchasing decisions, to the increased share of the streaming market (2nd to Netflix in the US), Gaga’s new brand can play in a space that crosses traditional marketing practices – with direct access to over 100m* people at launch.

Taking these factors into account, Amazon quickly becomes arguably the perfect marketing and distribution platform for a new brand – if marketed correctly.

Perhaps we shouldn’t be shocked – disruption in the beauty sector has been highly evident I’m the last couple of years.

Rihanna’s beauty brand Fenty has been cited by Fenty Marketing Director, Sandy Saputo,  as the biggest beauty brand launch in YouTube History, achieving over 132m views in its first month. Launching live on the same day in 17 countries, the brand was omnichannel from birth, with the ability to directly ship to 137 countries. Glamor Magazine even went as far to call the disruptive shockwave – ‘The Fenty Effect’!

Saputo attributes the secret to Fenty’s success to “the diverse, insanely creative and brave marketing team”. The ability to understand and cater to audiences, with availability, choice and at speed, appears to be a core component that these high profile examples might share.

This should give considerable food for thought to those of us in branding. The traditional touch points in a sector like beauty are being redefined, thanks to an audience that is rapidly redefining themselves from being empowered to leveraging genuine power – especially in a consumer spending sense.

What makes a dynamic female audience engage in an age of such personalised needs? How can brands create engagement and loyalty in an age when the traditional purchase funnel is being challenged? Why does confirmation bias represent the most dangerous ingredient when creating a brand for modern female consumers?

We all need to be considering these factors, a lot more often than ever before thanks to Rihanna and Lady Gaga!

Rob Scotland



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