Product Launch Meet Pandemic
With many launches and major initiatives taking a back seat until the world has a bit more of a handle on what’s going on, there are a select few who are braving the cold and moving forward with their launches. And what do you know? They’re finding success!
The plans aren’t fool proof, and they require a lot of the right pieces in play like the right launch messaging, perfect medium, and appropriate product. However, it’s important to note that the perfect storm can exist. In this blog, Hollywood Branded explores how some of the top influencers are continuing to find success with their brands during COVID-19.
Joanna Gaines / Magnolia Table Vol. 2
Everyone’s favorite interior designer is slowly, but surely turning into America’s favorite chef as well. Known for her and her husband’s extremely successful home makeover series Fixer Upper, the family is on their way to becoming media moguls… who live on a farm and raise their own animals. After the couple rose to insane fame thanks to Fixer Upper, Joanna in particular is becoming a household name in the kitchen as well. Releasing her first cookbook in 2018, Magnolia Table quickly became a NY Times Bestseller. Between that success and a new cooking show on the way, it’s no surprise that Gaines went for Magnolia Table Vol. 2. However, no publisher in the universe could have predicted its launch to coincide with COVID-19.
While the inconsistency in the economy might certainly dampen sales, little did we all know, Joanna had a bit of a secret weapon up her sleeve… her family. Throughout the quarantine experience, Joanna has been posting cooking tutorials, edited by her son, of her making meals for her family – something that is incredibly relatable right now. While it’s a rough time to launch any product, with at home cooking inevitably on the rise, a new cookbook is certainly a logical purchase right now. This is only compounded by the heartwarming, family-friendly videos of her cooking flooding her Instagram.
The icing on the cake was the “book signing” Gaines hosted at her home. Knowing she would have to skip her promotional book tour the week of its release, the author and her kids set up a makeshift book tour in their kitchen with each kid taking turns acting out a different type of fan. The video proved to be a hit, garnering over 2 million views, oh… and a comment from Taylor Swift complimenting her kids’ talent by saying, “GIVE! THEM! ALL! OSCARS!”
Rihanna / Fenty
In May 2019, Rihanna shook the fashion industry by becoming the first black woman to create an original brand with the French luxury conglomerate LVMH (home to brands like Givenchy, Fendi, and Christian Dior). The launch was a hit as the pieces combined Rihanna’s edgy, effortless style with a luxury that only LVMH could bring to the table. However, similar to all retailers right now, Fenty and by association, Rihanna are being forced to get creative with their launches during this COVID-19 period.
Each Fenty launch has come with its' own version of bells and whistles whether it be an exclusive pop-up in Paris or a retail partnership with Bergdorf Goodman marked with insane, state of the art LED display panels. However, the fashion house’s latest launch of their Faux-Leather Fenty capsule collection on April 2nd forced the superstar to think outside the box… and inside the phone!
To make the quarantine launch as memorable as possible, Fenty and @badgalriri took to Instagram Live to host the #FENTYSocialClub, which was an IG Live party with performances from four different musical acts, of course with the ability to stream all over the world. The IG Live was of course co-hosted by Rihanna who was seen dancing in the Faux Leather corset dress the whole time, something that is becoming more and more exciting as the star becomes more and more private.
And we weren’t the only ones who noticed! The Faux-Leather Capsule launch earned Rihanna PETA’s Compassion in Fashion award for her, “JAW-DROPPING leather free,” collection according to a tweet from the organization.
Kim Kardashian West / SKIMS
Between her makeup line, KKW Beauty, her mobile video game, Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, and her shapewear line, SKIMS, if you’re one of her 165 million followers, chances are you’re constantly inundated with some product launch of Kim Kardashian West’s.
Typically associated with a limitless number of Instagram Stories and posts, the Coronavirus didn’t make too much of a difference in the latest shapewear launch. However, there was one slight change… the $1 million donation the SKIMS brand promised to make to Baby2Baby's COVID-19 Emergency Response Program to support their mission to provide essentials to children in need.
Here's Kim's IG post announcing the company's donation.
Utilizing (virtual) press appearances on programs like Jimmy Fallon and The View, Kardashian West promoted the restock of this particular collection, while additionally giving the charity a shout out. And guess what… it worked! A majority of the collection is sold out, with the remaining pieces on ‘Low Stock’ warning.
Waitlist, waitlist, waitlist!
Adjusting To The New Normal
Even influencers are doing it. Quarantine has proven to do disastrous things to our economy and many of our wallets. However, it’s also brought us closer to family, closer to our phones, and closer to each other. Each of these influencer campaigns played off of at least one of those factors proving that there are in fact certain products and initiatives that will get us to spend again.
As for those brands still looking to make that impact, take something from these examples. Now isn’t the time to launch just any product – it will have to make sense in this new ‘now,’ but if it does, and if it’s launched right, with empathy and honesty about the current circumstances, there is a way to connect with the consumer, maybe even on a deeper level than before.
We Got More Where That Came From!
If this article peaked your interest, we have a ton of more content about influencers and celebrity endorsement partnerships. Check out some of them below!
- Marketing From An Influencer's Perspective
- Brand Partnership With Travel Influencers
- Transparency In Influencer Marketing
- Top 5 Celebrity Endorsements
- When Celebrity Endorsements Go Wrong
You can become an influencer marketing expert too! Enroll in our influencer marketing school and become a certified influencer marketer, learning all the ins and out of successful marketing campaigns.