Lady Gaga – arguably the female musician of 2009 in the UK (certainly if album and singles sales are anything to go by) – has teamed up with Polaroid. In a move that goes beyond celebrity endorsement, this “deal” has been positioned as a true partnership with Lady Gaga taking on the role of creative director for specialist projects.
I’d say this is a bold, and quite possibly a very good move (let’s see whether the Lady Gaga brand is sustainable through 2010) for Polaroid. Polaroid, a brand that was synonymous with the youthful side of photography – fun, instant shots – really lost its way through the naughties – failing to recognise the importance of digital before it was too late. But, it’s back – with new products that stay true to the values of Polaroid (instant printing) and this partnership could further help to raise the brands profile with the demographic that it had previously lost (the young).
For Lady Gaga, this deal shows the strength of the brand of celebrity. The fact that she had already established a design element – “Haus of Gaga” – to the Gaga brand I find is staggering in such a short space of time. But the partnership also demonstrates that how, in the age of public engagement, it’s more important to go beyond mere association with celebrity deals, but to demonstrate to the consumers that the celebrity is truly engaged with the project/brand. Thus the appointment of Lady Gaga as a Creative Director rather than then more traditional “face of” can be seen as a good move. By demonstrating that Lady Gaga has had a pivotal role in the products design/creation will surely have a greater appeal to her fan base ensuring that more of her brand juice rubs off on Polaroid.
Let’s see how it pans out – and also see how many other musicians created design houses in 2010.