Celebrity endorsements have been an advertising tradition for centuries. Seriously. In fact, the first celebrities to ever promote products were Roman gladiators who would recommend oils and wines to their fans.
And over the past thousands of years, not much has changed. Brands still leverage the massive amount of love that celebrities have earned to build awareness, improve sentiment, and increase sales for their products or services.
However, just getting a random celebrity to be the face of your product won’t automatically lead to sales. Instead, brands should focus on stars who genuinely love their products, which will lead to authentic endorsements. Check out these 12 brands that have done it right with the best celebrity endorsements in 2022.
1. Our Place x Selena Gomez
@ourplace when we think of cooking joyfully, @Selena Gomez immediately comes to mind. we’re so thrilled to partner with her to bring joy, warmth, and (re)connection with our whole selves back into our cooking practice.#selenagomez #ourplace #cooking #cookware #kitchenhacks #fun #selener #colorful #joy #colorfulkitchen #alwayspan #perfectpot ♬ original sound – Our Place
Our Place, a brand selling Instagram-worthy pots and pans, partnered with Selena Gomez to release limited-edition colors of their products. Selena, an avid chef and the host of her own cooking show, wanted to tie her Mexican heritage into the project, leading to the “Rosa” and “Azul” cookware.
Our Place and Selena promoted the collaboration with various videos where she cooks, shares food, and discusses what she loves about cooking and why she wanted to collaborate with the brand.
They also collaborated with influencers and sent them the collection so they could unbox them, cook with them, and show them off to their followers.
2. IPSY x Alicia Keys
IPSY, a monthly makeup subscription service, partnered with Alicia Keys to curate a special edition collection. While it may seem odd to collaborate with a celebrity who once started the #NoMakeup social media campaign, Alicia Keys is vocal about how she now wears makeup that feels right to her. She’s all about embracing authenticity, just like IPSY is.
Additionally, she formed Keys Soulcare, her own clean skincare line, and she made sure to include plenty of her favorite products from the line in her curated IPSY collaboration.
IPSY then sent these limited-edition Glam Bag X to creators to showcase the products and get people excited.
3. SKIMS x Becky G, Brooke Shields, Chelsea Handler, Juliette Lewis, and Indya Moore
How do you feel about your boobs? @iambeckyg, @brookeshields, @chelseahandler, @cassiesuper, @juliettelewis and #IndyaMoore tell all in our campaign to celebrate the launch of SKIMS Bras.
SKIMS Bras launch on Tuesday, September 27 at 12 PM ET: https://t.co/YijdXcwubo pic.twitter.com/Etc9gqxtyR
— SKIMS (@skims) September 20, 2022
SKIMS, Kim Kardashian’s line of shapewear and loungewear, recently went live with a campaign to introduce their new bras with the help of stars like Becky G, Brooke Shields, Chelsea Handler, Juliette Lewis, and Indya Moore. They filmed a few videos in which each celeb models one or more different colored bras to showcase the line’s wide range of neutral shades.
In the videos, they discuss both abstract concepts, like confidence and sexiness, and their opinions on the bras themselves, like how comfortable they are or how they fit.
The campaign also featured over 50 additional women who modeled the bras and answered the same questions as the celebrities to showcase that SKIMS is for everyone.
4. Nike x Billie Eilish
While Nike frequently partners with athletes to promote their products, this time around, they partnered with Billie Eilish to reach her large Gen Z fanbase. Together, they collaborated to design two different sneakers (riffs on the AJKO1 and Air Force 1), as well as a hoodie, t-shirt, and sweatpants.
They incorporated elements of Billie’s style, like her love of baggy clothing and colors that are important to the singer, to create a collection that truly felt authentic. This collab also plays off Billie’s known love for sneakers. In fact, the singer filmed a video with Complex in which she goes sneaker shopping and discusses everything she likes about different Nike shoes.
The collaboration was a success, with many of the pieces selling out.
5. L’Oreal Paris x H.E.R.
If there is anyone that is #HairGoals, it is H.E.R. The singer/songwriter is famous for her stunning curls, making her a wonderful choice to be the global ambassador for L’Oreal Paris. In one commercial, she promotes their Elvive Dream Lengths Curls product line while showing off her gorgeous strands.
But she’s not just stopping at her hair. Her makeup artist, Marissa Vossen, uses L’Oreal Paris cosmetics when she helps H.E.R. get ready for events, too.
In an interview with Vogue, she said, “L’Oréal was actually the first brand of makeup I ever used, so it’s a really sentimental thing.” By harnessing her authentic brand love, L’Oreal found the perfect ambassador in H.E.R.
6. COACH x Lil Nas X
In their latest campaign, Courage to Be Real, COACH partnered with hip hop artist Lil Naz X to showcase their clothing, promote his new song, STAR WALKIN’, and tell his story in the form of a dramatic video.
Lil Nas X has always chosen to be his authentic self, whether by pushing the boundaries of fashion on the red carpet or coming out in an industry that hasn’t always been accepting, making him the ideal partner for a campaign focused on having the “Courage to Be Real.”
7. Nike x Serena Williams
LOVE these custom AF1s @Nike made me inspired by some of my favorite on court looks I’ve worn over the years. Tell me which look is your favorite!
And Nike is at it again, this time with a tennis legend.
Serena Williams has been sporting NIKE clothing on the tennis court for years, so it makes sense that she loves to show off custom shoes, clothing, and more from the brand on social media.
But it doesn’t stop in the virtual landscape. As Serena attended her last U.S. Open before retiring in 2022, she donned an entire crystal-encrusted Nike outfit that she co-designed with Carly Ellis, the lead apparel designer at Nike. And to further the collab, her sneakers featured shoelace tags from her own brand, Serena Williams Jewelry.
8. JBL x Doja Cat
@dojacat #ad 🧊🔊 @jblaudio #ad ♬ original sound – Doja Cat
Taking a unique approach to her collab, Doja Cat posted a TikTok in which she held up her JBL speaker and proceeded to say “Jibble, jibble, jibble,” while being fed what appears to be chicken. There was no mention of the features, and she didn’t actually use the speaker, instead opting to merely show it off. And she earned 5.2M likes, 49.2K comments, and 26.6K shares.
So why did this approach that broke all the rules of traditional influencer marketing work? It was so successful because the video resembled her other videos, showcasing her unique sense of humor and irreverent approach to life, allowing it to blend seamlessly in with the other content on her account.
The partnership extended beyond the viral TikTok, though. Doja Cat showed up to the Grammys red carpet with the custom JBL Clip 4 speaker from the video attached to her bag.
The collaboration was focused on authentic sound and being your authentic self, and who better to represent authenticity than the rapper who was not afraid to be fed chicken on camera?
9. Gucci x Harry Styles
@i_d #harrystyles just dropped a new collab with @Gucci 👀 taking over an iconic Milan vintage store, the #gucciHAHAHA pieces were fotted amongst vintage garments. The collection will be available to purchase from october ✅❤️🤝#harrystylesxgucci #mensfashion #mfw #fashiontiktok #learnontiktok #fashionfyp ♬ daylight hs howard stern show – leah!!!
Harry Styles is known for his unique style that incorporates vintage elements, feminine pieces, and bold colors, so it makes sense that he would partner with Gucci’s Creative Director, Alessandro Michele, to create a line of clothing. They named the collection Gucci HA HA HA as a nod to their first initials and joyous approach to fashion.
The collaboration makes sense, given Harry’s impact on popular culture over the past few years, what with the release of his latest album Harry’s House, his role in the much-discussed movie Don’t Worry Darling, and his genderfluid approach to fashion that has made the news multiple times.
The HA HA HA capsule might be a bid to court Gen Z shoppers and invite them into the luxury space with the help of a popstar with massive appeal in their generation. And this collaboration truly works because Harry is a known fan of Gucci. He wears their clothing regularly and is a friend of Alessandro Michele IRL. Combining his fashion must-haves with the creative minds behind Gucci led to a truly unique collection.
10. Pokémon x Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran recently released the music video for Celestial, a song that will be on the soundtrack for the upcoming Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet games.
Ed has previously talked about his love for Pokémon, and the music video features animations of different Pokémon that were modeled after some of Ed’s doodles from his childhood. The video is meant to get people excited for the upcoming game release.
And this isn’t the singer’s first partnership with the beloved franchise, either. He performed a concert within the Pokémon Go app in 2021 to highlight the launch of his latest album.
The collaboration so far has been a success due in large part to Ed’s lifetime love for the brand and its characters.
11. Tiffany & Co. x Beyoncé
Beyoncé first partnered with the iconic jewelry brand in 2021 when they announced she and her husband, Jay-Z, were the new faces of the company in a campaign called ABOUT LOVE. Now, in 2022, Beyoncé is back with a new campaign, LOSE YOURSELF IN LOVE.
The campaign videos feature music from Beyoncé’s newly released album, Renaissance, and the brand created a custom version of the Tiffany HardWear necklace for the star. Throughout the videos, Beyoncé models multiple different pieces and showcases her unapologetic self, which their campaign landing page emphasizes.
Tiffany & Co. and Beyoncé also co-hosted a CLUB RENAISSANCE party in Paris at the end of Fashion Week to further promote the collaboration and her album.
12. Taco Bell x Pete Davidson
Taco Bell partnered with chaotic comedian Pete Davidson to spoof the classic influencer apology video. He appears in a commercial during which he apologizes on behalf of Taco Bell for “going too far” with their breakfast offerings. In the commercial, he hypes up the classic breakfast crunchwrap.
Pete is a natural partner for this collab since his comedy (and sometimes behavior) over the past few years could often be described as “going too far.” Just as Taco Bell never takes itself seriously, Pete shows that he can do just the same.
So how can small brands compete without celebrity endorsements?
Very few brands can afford to add a celebrity to their ambassador team, but that doesn’t mean small businesses can’t see the same results! Brands with small budgets can work with nano, micro, and macro creators to leverage the trust they’ve built with their fans. In fact, because they have fewer followers than a mega influencer or celebrity, they have more time to thoroughly engage with their fans, leading to more authentic connections.
Key takeaway on the best celebrity endorsements of this year: Partner with celebrities to harness the power of earned media and major fan love.
Celebrities are known for having loyal fan bases who will go out of their way to support them. So when brands partner with these beloved figures to promote products they really use and truly love, businesses can see major returns.
And since celebrities and their comings and goings are huge parts of pop culture, brands are sure to get a lot of earned media for campaigns featuring people’s favorite stars.
But don’t stress if hiring Beyoncé for your campaign is way out of budget. Finding the right creators for your business (whether they’re nano influencers or mega) can help you harness those authentic connections and drive some major brand love.