Bieber's star power more than skin-deep for Proactiv

Fri Aug 20, 2010 8:59pm EDT
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By Jennifer Netherby

NEW YORK (Billboard) - It's come to this: No one is more willing to talk about acne than a musician.

With acne treatment Proactiv's signing earlier this month of Justin Bieber as a spokesman, the teen star joins Katy Perry, Avril Lavigne, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Jessica Simpson, Alicia Keys and Mandy Moore as recording artists who have signed up to talk openly about "critters on their face," as Perry refers to it in her spot.

Proactiv has made it lucrative for them to talk, signing multimillion-dollar deals for the biggest names. Bieber will get $3 million for his two-year deal, similar to what Simpson was paid, according to a cosmetics industry source. Perry and Lavigne are paid almost as much.

"We did it because the kid uses it," says Bieber's manager, Scooter Braun, who wouldn't confirm the $3 million price tag. "I never want to do anything with Justin's brand that isn't organic. He isn't manufactured."

Proactiv spends between $12 million and $15 million a year on endorsements, says Greg Renker, co-founder of Guthy-Renker, which markets and sells Proactiv. The guiding philosophy behind the endorsements is that Proactiv spends less on branding by signing an instantly recognizable celebrity than it would on billboards and commercials. (It still spends big on traditional marketing -- $100 million annually -- for Proactiv and the company's other products.)

"I love Julia Roberts, but I've probably had 15 movie experiences with her in my lifetime," Renker says. "I've listened to (Perry's) 'California Gurls' every day since it was released. Consumers are connecting to musical talent multiple times a day in a way that is more than visceral."


Proactiv is the flagship product for the private, Palm Desert, Calif.-based company, whose yearly sales exceed $1.5 billion, according to Renker. Its lineup includes such celebrity-backed skin care lines as Heidi Klum's In an Instant, Victoria Principal's Principal Secret and Cindy Crawford's Meaningful Beauty.   Continued...

<p>Canadian singer Justin Bieber performs on NBC's 'Today' show in New York, June 4, 2010. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid</p>