You know an actress has a killer brand when clothing and spirits and athletic retailers alike can visualize her lighting up their next ad campaign.
Such is the image Scarlett Johansson has carved out for herself. She’s managed, somehow, to become one of the world’s biggest bombshells without sacrificing her innate indie-ingenue qualities. Guys lust after her — girls identify with her. She’s equally appealing to Vogue and Maxim audiences.
All of which makes her an advertising exec’s dream. Note to pitchmen and pitchwomen everywhere: totally blanking on a concept for your next assignment? Call to mind one of those buzzwords you’re always tossing out — fresh, sexy, edgy — and see if all of them don’t apply to Johansson.
If you work at Mango, you’ve already seen the light on this. The Spanish mid-tier fashion chain announced Johansson as its new face today.
She succeeds her Vicky Cristina Barcelona co-star, Penelope Cruz. You might think that for a Spanish clothing company trying to make inroads in the States (Mango has a store in New York and e-commerce available to U.S. customers), Cruz would be the ultimate brand ambassador. But Mango apparently couldn’t resist Johansson, who they laud as the embodiment of the “urban, independent and cosmopolitan woman.”
The company is, of course, only the latest in a long line of suitors begging for Johansson’s endorsement. Here’s how some of her biggest deals have turned out.
CALVIN KLEIN, 2004
The company tapped Johansson for a black-and-white television ad extolling its reinterpretation of the Eternity fragrance, Eternity Moment. The ad was a success — Eternity Moment sales contributed to the biggest sales growth in years for Calvin Klein, and one of the best financial years in recent history for its parent company Philips-Van Heusen.
Johansson’s longest-running deal has been with the makeup and haircare behemoth L’Oreal, which reportedly pays her $3 million a year to shill for them. For the company, it’s been well worth it — in 2006, Johansson’s first full year as a spokeswoman for the makeup collection HIP and other makeup lines, L’Oreal posted a sales increase of more than 5% in cosmetics.
In perhaps her only truly disastrous collaboration, Johansson teamed with Reebok to design a line of activewear and starred in ads for the brand. A year later, the athletic company dropped the deal, presumably to explore deals with another celebrity.
LOUIS VUITTON, 2008
Johansson made her first foray into the luxury market with fall 2007 and spring 2008 campaigns for the handbag and accessories line. By the end of her tenure, yearly sales had risen from 5.6 billion euros to 6 billion euros worldwide.
MOET & CHANDON and DOLCE & GABBANA, 2009
LVMH kept it all in the family when it signed Johansson, who had just wrapped the LV deal, to be the face of Moet & Chandon champagne. The spirits company shot the ads just before Johansson dyed her bubbly-colored blonde hair dark.
Dolce & Gabbana introduced its line of high-end cosmetics with Johansson as the face earlier this year (L’Oreal’s makeup is a mass-tier brand, so the endorsements shouldn’t conflict). We’ll have to wait until this year wraps up to see whether Johansson bumps or sinks those brands.