Rihanna Is The Most Marketable Of All Big-Name Celebrities

The NPD Group Releases Data Matching Celebrities to Brands

Port Washington, NY, January 13, 2016 – Rihanna is the most marketable of all big-name celebrities, with fans that have more distinctive brand preferences than any other big-name celebrity in any genre (including athletes, actors, musicians, and others), according to data from global information provider The NPD Group.  NPD’s new BrandLink database identifies the brand preferences of fans to help marketers identify the celebrities with which brand users are most likely to engage.

According to NPD, a celebrity is considered to be a strong endorsement opportunity for a brand if the fans of that celebrity are at least 50 percent more likely to use the brand.  The endorsement score shown below reflects the relative marketability of big-name celebrities, based on the total number of brands for whom they would be a strong endorser.  Rihanna’s index score of 367 means that she has almost 3.7 times as many strong brand endorsement opportunities as the average big-name celebrity.  Besides those shown in the chart below, Rihanna outranks other well-known celebrities including Angelina Jolie, Tim McGraw, Coldplay, and Stephen Curry.

Top Ten Big-Name Celebrities Based On
Brand Endorsement Score
Rihanna 367
Beyoncé 336
Ne-Yo 334
Usher 334
Wiz Khalifa 325
The Weeknd 318
Jennifer Lopez 313
Kevin Hart 306
Dr. Dre 301
Khloé Kardashian 298

One of the many brands that drove Rihanna’s top endorsement score was Jeep, which means that her fans show a distinct preference for Jeep.  On the surface, if Jeep were considering a celebrity endorsement, it might think that Rihanna and Beyonce’ are equally good choices; both are chart-topping female R&B stars with very similar fan bases.  However, BrandLink shows that Rihanna’s fans are much more likely to choose Jeep.  

“CMOs and CFOs have long asked for better data to help inform their expensive sponsorship decisions. We can now prove what has been suspected when making expensive sponsorship decisions—that celebrities are media properties in their own right, with audiences that have nuanced brand preferences”, said Barbara Zack, vice president, The NPD Group. “In the same way that every sitcom is not equally valuable to a particular brand, neither is every celebrity equally valuable to a particular brand.”

Beyond the obvious business applications for marketers, BrandLink is also used by celebrities and their agents to identify brands that are strong prospects for lucrative endorsement deals. Although this analysis is focused on big-name celebrities (those with over 10 million big fans), the database includes lesser known talent as well.  Smaller celebrities with a high number of brand endorsement opportunities include talent as diverse as M.I.A. (rap/hip-hop), Michelle Phan (YouTube), and Luis Suárez (soccer).


BrandLink is a database representing responses from 92,000 consumer surveys, reflecting self-reported preferences for more than1,000 celebrities and 2,500 brands across diverse categories including automotive, consumer packaged goods, beauty/fashion, financial services, restaurants, technology, and more. This specific analysis is focused on “big name celebrities” (those with over 10 million big fans).

About The NPD Group, Inc.

The NPD Group provides market information and business solutions that drive better decision-making and better results. The world’s leading brands rely on us to help them get the right products in the right places for the right people. Practice areas include apparel, appliances, automotive, beauty, consumer electronics, diamonds, e-commerce, entertainment, fashion accessories, food consumption, foodservice, footwear, home, mobile, office supplies, retail, sports, technology, toys, video games, and watches / jewelry. For more information, visit npd.com and npdgroupblog.com. Follow us on Twitter: @npdgroup

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The NPD Group, Inc.
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Port Washington, NY 11050

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