Kanye’s marketability has reached a peak not many can claim to have climbed. Whether you like it or not, you want Yeezy in your ads.
Without a doubt, Kanye West has catapulted himself into a revered and envied state of prominence. When someone does as Kanye West has, transcend and reinvent the world around them, it’s garnished with attention. Since hip-hop’s inception into the mainstream consciousness, companies have jumped at the opportunity to endorse the “it” rapper, that’s not news. Kanye West, however, has done it in rare fashion. With him, it’s more than just putting on a nice smile after taking a sip of a refreshing cold beverage. The endorsements in Kanye’s portfolio reflect his bravado, a man whose lifestyle injects radiance into the worlds of music and fashion. Beyond those realms, Kanye West has the ability to reach not only a company’s desired target audience, he can also attract new eyes, new ears, and new dollars. Of course, people tend to put in their two cents about the man but there is no denying what a Kanye song can do for your commercial or the weight his name can carry in the cruel and cut-throat world that is the advertising industry.
Think back to his appearance in Nike‘s star-studded Kobe System campaign. His “But…I’m the best” bit in the commercial was the most memorable of all. Already a part of the Nike family, Kanye West’s cameo added a comical but real Ye to the mix of things. It was not his short segment alone that resulted in successful sales numbers but having him represent his true self in an advertisement is a win-win for any company. Mr. West, the college dropout, threw a Louis Vuitton backpack over his shoulder before preppy became cool again. The self-proclaimed “Louis Vuitton Don” had almost every 17 and 18 year old in Soho walking with a thousand dollar LV bag and lunch money in their back pocket. Sure, he is not the first artist to set trends, but throughout his career the outspoken producer and emcee’s ideals have been able to stick with the masses. Penetrating into the very core of American life, it is that reason alone that makes Kanye West one of the most marketable human beings on the planet.
As our chronicles of Kanye West continue here at The Source, with your permission, I would like to take you through Kanye’s successful endorsement history.