On Monday, Coach announced a $10 million deal with Selena Gomez, who will design a her own line for Coach and appear in future campaigns as the face of the brand.
With the move, Coach follows in the footsteps of Estée Lauder, which named Kendall Jenner as the face of its brand in 2014 in an effort to target millennial consumers. At the time, Jenner had the largest Instagram following among fashion models. Today, Gomez is the most popular celebrity on Instagram, boasting over 104 million followers.
Coach has struggled to stand out among its fashion competitors on social media, particularly on Instagram. Among brands benchmarked in L2’s Digital IQ Fashion Index 2016, Coach accounts for 1.3% of Instagram posts, but just 0.6% of total interactions on the platform.
L2 research shows that Gomez has the potential to elevate Coach’s social presence. Celebrity posts continue to resonate with fashion consumers, accounting for 21% of top performing posts on Facebook and 33% of top performing posts on Instagram.
Furthermore, posts featuring Gomez are exceptionally popular among consumers. By comparing posts that mentioned celebrities to ones that did not—from the same brand in the same time frame—L2 calculated the social uplift (average increase in interactions) a specific personality can provide to a post.
Selena Gomez ranks second among all celebrities analyzed—posts featuring the singer / actress average 55% more Instagram interactions than brand posts without a celebrity.
Brands have also been slow to leverage Gomez, even given her popularity. Gomez was mentioned only 43 times by just 21 Fashion brands over the past year, much less often than fashion models like Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid, who each received over 150 mentions by more than 30 Fashion brands.
While celebrity partnerships can pay off, they are also not without risks. For example, Kendall Jenner suspended her Instagram account in November and overnight Estée Lauder lost two thirds of its engagement on the platform.