The Success of Celebrity-Founded Brands


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How Celebrity-Founded Brands Gain So Much Success

Everyone should have a hobby or a passion that’s separate from their career. Celebrities across many different sectors are increasingly diving into the entrepreneurial world and creating their own businesses as a side hustle. What are these celebrities doing to promote their brands that makes them so successful?

It’s all about using more than just your celebrity influence to market your brand. It’s important to know how to meet the needs of your target audience and how to build your brand’s values into your strategy. In this blog, Hollywood Branded talks about some of the well-known celebrity-founded brands and the strategies they use to make them so successful.

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                                                                                                                               photo credit: Hurriyet Daily News

What are Some Examples? 

It’s becoming more and more common for celebrities to create their own brands and businesses. There are too many successful celebrity brands to name within a short blog post, so let’s focus on some of the well-known brands that have become successful among their target audiences!

The three brands that this blog will focus on are Fabletics by Kate Hudson, Kylie Cosmetics by Kylie Jenner, and Combs Enterprises by Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs.

Fabletics: Where It Started and Where It's Going

Kate Hudson, American actress, author, and fashion entrepreneur, founded Fabletics, which is a Techstyle Fashion Group brand (the parent organization to JustFab and Shoedazzle). All brands under Techstyle Fashion Group operate under the membership business model, with the intention of keeping their customers loyal, giving those loyal customers great benefits, while predicting income based on customer preferences. This loyalty program allows customers a monthly option to buy, skip with no charge, or receive a membership credit. If customers choose to shop, they can save up to 50% off of all retail items. With their knowledge of members’ personalized style and size preferences, they can predict inventory with 95% accuracy. That can help limit a ton of waste!

Fabletics’ business model is subscription-based, where customers will pay a monthly fee to gain access to “member prices”, which are usually around 25% of the listing price. One way to get customers to purchase from a brand they’ve never heard of is to attach a celebrity’s face to it, and Kate Hudson happens to be perfect for the “fun, flirty, and fit AF” look that JustFab, owner of Fabletics, has been going for! 

Following the success of Lululemon, athleisure took off. People started wearing the workout clothes to more than just a class or a morning workout, and started wearing them to lounge around the house, go shopping with friends, or go grab a quick bite to eat. Lululemon started designing more clothes that branched out of just the everyday workout clothes, and that’s when athleisure became extremely popular. The main goal of Fabletics was to provide athletic wear that was not only just good for performance, but also branched outside of the typical grays and blacks that were common in athleisure!

“I’ve lived in activewear my entire life,” Hudson told Entrepreneur magazine. “And I just didn’t believe that a pair of high-quality yoga pants had to cost that much”

Kate believes that it wouldn’t make sense for a company to not include everyone, which is why Fabletics places such a high value on inclusivity. Kate said that “[Fabletics] is based on inclusivity, living your best life, living your healthiest life, being as active as you can be, being supportive, and connecting with people in communities.” She also said this is why she partnered with Weight Watchers. She believes it’s a passionate world, and people are always looking for a place where everyone is welcome! 

Fabletics Kate Hudson                                                                                                                                      photo credit: Fabletics blog

What Has Made Fabletics So Successful? 

Fabletics values the loyalty program, which allows them to understand their customers and their needs, so that they can cater the pieces they create to those customers, which ultimately leads to less waste. 

Kate believes what helped make Fabletics successful was the authenticity of the brand. While in an interview with The Daily Front Row, she even said she was currently dressed head-to-toe in her own clothes, but she wasn’t trying to post anything, that’s just the way she lives. That authenticity earns her trust in her audience.

Kate has maintained partnerships with many influencers from different backgrounds. One of the more well-known Fabletics influencers is Maddie Ziegler, who started her fame on the hit reality show, “Dance Moms”, but has used her platform to build herself beyond that! She’s an inspiring, young dancer and actress, who has a strong Instagram following and uses that to post authentic pictures of her exercising or living her daily life in a set from Fabletics.

Another notable influencer, who works closely with Fabletics is Madison Fisher, a vlogger on the YouTube channel, “TheFishFam”. She’s an active mother of 4, and posts videos of her, her husband, and children and their daily lives. She works closely with Fabletics to promote her active life as a mom, and receives a lot of success within that demographic.

Fabletics Maddie Ziegler Kate Hudson

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How the Youngest Jenner Built Her Brand Empire

At age 10, Kylie Jenner made her big debut on her family’s reality show, “Keeping up with the Kardashians.” Kylie, along with the rest of her family, have continually been in the public eye since the show’s premiere in 2007. In 2015, the youngest member of the Kardashian/Jenner family created her own empire with the success of Kylie Cosmetics. 

In 2015, when she was 18 years old, Kylie launched Kylie Lip Kits, which was a collection of three liquid lipsticks that came with a lip liner. Kylie wanted to have a test run, so she launched the trio of products, at 5,000 units, each priced at $29. They sold out immediately, and it took another six months to produce the next batch of products! 

In 2016, Kylie added three new shades of lip kits to her collection for Valentine’s Day, this time selling 500,000 units. In July of 2016, Kylie introduced her first Kyshadow palette, a nine color eye shadow palette, branching her outside of the lip category. In November of 2016, Kylie Cosmetics had their first collaboration, and was with Kylie’s half-sister Khloe Kardashian for the Koko x Kylie collection. It was a four-piece lipstick set, which, you guessed it, immediately sold out once it was launched. 

In 2017, Kylie expanded into the highlighter category, with Kylighter, a collection of six highlighter shades. In 2017. She also did another collaboration with another member of her family, creating KKW by Kylie Cosmetics creme lipstick set with half-sister, Kim Kardashian. Kim’s beauty brand was then launched a few months later. 

More recently, in November of 2019, it was announced that Kylie sold a 51% majority stake in her beauty empire to Coty Inc., which was a $600 million deal. The deal puts the value of Kylie’s business at $1.2 billion, and with this, Kylie hit her $1 billion mark 3 years earlier than previously expected. With this deal, Kylie will be able to stay in the business, working on product development and social media with her Los Angeles team. Coty Inc. is working on plans for international expansion for the business. 

Kylie Jenner Kyliie Cosmetics

photo credit: About Her

Kylie has a massive social media following of 200 million, with the majority of those being noted as between age 18 and 24, which align with the brand’s target market!

Kylie utilizes her social media accounts to post photos and selfies of herself wearing different Lip Kit shades and takes videos of upcoming products. 

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How Sean 'Diddy' Combs Created His Enterprise 

Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, record executive, entrepreneur, and actor. He’s also the chairman and CEO of Combs Enterprises and oversees a portfolio of different brands and interests. The areas include spirits and beverage, entertainment, media, fragrance, fashion, marketing, and music. 

So, how did he build such a successful portfolio of such diverse brands?  Combs understood that his celebrity status could only take him so far in terms of attracting attention to his business. 

After his rap career, his first step into the launch of his business was the creation of Sean John in 1998, which was a line of men’s urban streetwear. In 2004, The Council of Fashion Designers of America named Sean Menswear Designer of the year. Combs continued to expand this brand with additional clothing lines, accessories, and fragrances. This helped show that it makes sense for a brand to look at additional product lines, if they can continue to offer the same brand attributes that attracted customers in the first place. 

Sean also worked as an actor, along with dipping his toes into TV and movie production, which helped him in building out his media brands. He partnered with companies like MTV and HBO to create shows. In 2015, he launched Revolt films, a production company that was focused on developing, producing, and financing original content for film and television. Sean also launched his own music television network, REVOLT, which was partnered with Comcast. REVOLT includes music news, videos, exclusive performances, and original content. 

sean combs diddy

Photo: Rex USA

Sean realizes the importance of using his own status as an entertainer to partner with other brands that value the same attributes and have the same image. In 2007, he partnered with Diageo, which is the world’s leading premium spirits company. He oversaw and managed all of CIROC Vodka’s brand initiatives. The brand received a 2013 Beverage Industry news Award of Excellence and was named 2011 Spirits Brand of the Year by Market Watch. 

After this experience, Sean created his own company, further expanding his empire. In 2013, he launched Combs Wine & Spirits, and partnered with Diageo again to acquire DeLeon, which includes high-end tequila brands. Sean then worked with actor/ producer Mark Wahlberg to launch fitness and water brand, AQUAhydrate. 

Sean placed an emphasis on taking the time to research how to please the target market, then creating steps to get there with innovation and creativity. You need to understand your loyal customers and what they will respond positively to! 

Dia Simms, one of the women behind Combs Enterprises, noted that it’s also important to talk with retailers about what customers are responding to best. How a product is presented is just as important as the taste of it. 

Sean knew the importance of adding brand extensions that still closely aligned with his primary target audience. It’s smart to create a portfolio of brands that crosses over multiple sectors, as long as it matches your overall brand strategy!

Sean Combs

How You Can Generate a Successful Brand of Your Own

After reading about several successful celebrity-founded brands, it’s obvious that each brand has their own personal marketing technique that makes them so successful. For Kate and Fabletics, she was able to build her brand through authenticity and her subscription-based business model that generates loyalty among her customers. She has led an active lifestyle throughout her entire life, which makes her brand so authentic! 

For Kylie, she had previous fame while starring alongside her celebrity family on the hit reality show, “Keeping Up With the Kardashians”. She has a massive social media following with the perfect target age group for her Kylie Cosmetics products. She’s able to take advantage of Snapchat and Instagram, which allow her to post selfies and videos of her trying her own products and showcasing them to her audience. Kylie also understands the importance of partnerships, and has created partnerships with various members of her family, which have all generated lots of success!

Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs understands the importance of partnering with brands who share the same values that he does, which helps him build an authentic portfolio of brands that have become so successful. He is successful across a diverse platform of brands, which allows him to be knowledgeable in many different fields and reaching different audiences!

Check out some of the blogs below to learn more about these brands and other celebrities with successful brands of their own! 

Want to include a celebrity in your next campaign? Check out our webinar to learn the best ways to engage consumers! 

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