A celebrity face fronting a watch brand doesn't guarantee strong sales, but it certainly doesn't hurt.
Marketing budgets have swelled in recent years as brands look to actors, instead of models, for advertising campaigns. Many were quick to embrace the country's appetite for celebrity, but there are a few that are approaching it more cautiously, since the rules aren't always clear.
One of the pitfalls, for example, was highlighted during Charlize Theron's now infamous former relationship with Raymond Weil. The Oscar-winning actress signed a deal in October 2005 that stated she would only wear Weil's watches. During the contract, the actress was spotted wearing a watch from a competing brand. It was reported that Raymond Weil sued Theron for a substantial sum and the news was picked up by virtually every tabloid and media outlet with an interest in celebrity. The case is still pending in a federal court, a Weil spokesman said.
Rolex has been working with notable names in sports and music, including Roger Federer and Michael Bublé, for decades (Arnold Palmer, for instance, has been wearing Rolex on the golf course for 40 years). But it goes against the brand to work with the "It" girl of the moment or a hot celebrity. "We don't do short-term relationships," said a spokeswoman. "We align ourselves with people who are in the areas we support heavily, such as golf and yachting."
But the gold standard of celebrity tie-ups, according to some industry insiders, is Cindy Crawford's long tenure with Omega. The Swiss company was ahead of many of its peers when it tapped Crawford in 1995 to appear in its ads.
"It was quite daring in those days," said Stephen Urquhart, president of Omega.
When Crawford was hired, for a sum that Urquhart declined to disclose, the brand was actively trying to reach out to women, who at the time only comprised about 25 percent of sales.
For its next men’s wear collection, @roberto_cavalli will show as a special guest at #PittiUomo, running from June 12-15. The brand, which has Florence in its roots, will relaunch its men’s wear collection, which will be presented separately from women’s wear for the first time since Paul Surridge was appointed creative director in May. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
“I was making the guacamole when my scout saw me,” says model @stuckinteenage on being discovered just six months ago while working at @chipotlemexicangrill. Since then Williams has signed with @dnamodels, walked in her first show at @calvinklein and landed on the cover of @vogueitalia – a high point of any model’s career. To read @lisajlockwood’s full interview with the model on her experiences thus far, head to WWD.com – link in bio. (📷: George Chinsee)
“I love the idea of dialogue, period. It’s where I’ve always gotten my inspiration from: hearing other women speak, their journeys and their paths,” said @hereisgina, who delivered the keynote speech during @sxsw for @createcultivate in partnership with @fossil. For her two panels, Rodriguez chose female empowering, female-led and female entrepreneurs to focus on. Head to WWD.com to read more about her thoughts on Time’s Up, growing up in a family of women and why we “need a girls’ club.” #wwdeye #sxsw (📷: @jgreenery)
Leading luxury brand are shaking things up to keep up with streetwear. Case in point: the arrival of @mrkimjones as artistic director of @diorhomme. Jones, who succeeds @Kris_Van_Assche, is seen as one of the handful of designers who can actually straddle the luxury and streetwear worlds — which could lead to even more changes at established brands. What could this mean for the rest of the menswear landscape? Head to WWD.com to find out what experts predict #wwdfashion (📷: @franckmura)
“It’s like buying groceries. You’re going to buy the best mango, the best mozzarella, the best things. You have to, or others are going to take it all,” said @gabrielahearst on why she uses only the finest fabrics. Last week, Hearst received her first @cfda nomination for Womenswear Designer of the Year, and earlier this month she opened a permanent showroom in Paris. To read @jessiredale’s interview with the designer and find out why this is shaping up to be a big year for her, head to WWD.com. #wwdfashion (📷: @francoisgoize)
“It’s an interesting thing, playing a younger version of your mother. It’s an interesting concept. I adore my mom and love her in every capacity, but it was just something that had never crossed my mind,” says @anniemstarke on playing a young Joan Castleman in “The Wife.” The same role will be played by her mother Glenn Close. Read more about her growing up in the film industry as the daughter of producer John H. Starke and Close and what she has planned for the future #wwdeye (📷: @nataliamantini)
@asics is launching a new streetwear sneaker inspired by its latest ambassador, @steveaoki. The Hyper-Kenzen x Aoki, which will launch at @footlocker stores exclusively tomorrow, is a slip-on style that incorporates the brand’s proprietary Gel technology through beads integrated into the midsole for comfort and endurance. Read the full story on WWD.com.