Is Chris Brown Still a Viable Endorser?
After facing public scrutiny, Chris Brown’s career is on the rebound. The 20-year-old singer is currently in the studio working on his third studio album. But one area that remains gray is the troubled star’s future endorsements.
Brown had been a spokesman for Wrigley and the Milk Mustache campaign, but lost the lucrative endorsement deals after allegations surfaced that he beat Rihanna. Marketing executive Steve Stoute of Translation Consultation & Brand Imaging, who organized Brown’s deal with Wrigley’s Doublemint gum, shared his thoughts on whether the “Forever” singer is still a viable endorser.
“I don’t know,” he told Billboard.biz when asked if Brown will recover from the incident. “It becomes much more risky obviously.”
He cited Kobe Bryant and Vanessa Williams as celebrities who were able to get back their endorsement deals after going through public scandals. “We don’t even remember what [Kobe] went through anymore. We don’t even think about it,” he said referring to the sexual assault allegations against the Lakers player in 2003.
“Whoever knows the Vanessa Williams tragedy when she had the naked pictures and to know that she’s selling products for Procter & Gamble,” he continued, “which would never sign somebody who was in Playboy magazine and market her to moms and kids.”
Stoute remains optimistic and believes that over time the public may forgive Brown. “You can do it. There’s a natural healing process and there’s a bunch of other magic that happens to make you that fortunate, but you can never count somebody out when there’s celebrity involved.”