Will Rihanna lose any of her celebrity endorsement deals due to her getting back with Chris Brown?
—O7, via Twitter
Rihanna isn't losing her lifetime supply of CoverGirl Wetslicks Fruit Spritzers just yet.
Sure, thanks to reports of a reunion with her alleged pummeler, Rihanna definitely looks like less of a role model for young girls, marketing experts tell me. And the singer's endorsement clients may very well dump her. But not yet.
It just so happens that Rihanna's future as a shill depends on one person, and that is...
Such decisions will likely take several more months, even if RiRi permanently reunites with her all-singing, all-dancing lummox. After all, she's still seen as the victim in all this—something many people in the entertainment business seem to have forgotten—and breaking from Rihanna could cause just as much bad publicity for a company as keeping her.
"I don't believe brands will use a reunion with Chris Brown as the sole basis for disengaging from her," says David Reeder, vice president at the branding agency GreenLight.
"More likely, brands will let consumers voice their opinion on the resumption of her relationship. If public sentiment takes a less than supportive turn, current deals she has may choose not to renew."
Meantime, marketing consultant Eli Portnoy of the Portnoy Group adds, "A lot of marketers are taking a wait-and-see attitude."
Yes, of course Rihanna's own actions will play a significant part in whether she'll ever get millions to pimp anything again. Thursday, for example, her lawyer declined an order of protection against Brown. Mommies may not like that the lady selling makeup to their children has chosen an alleged abuser as a mate.
A CoverGirl spokeswoman recently told the Los Angeles Times that ads featuring Rihanna are still running nationally but would not say whether developing news would affect her status as a spokeswoman.
But really, it's all up to the rest of us.
Should Rihanna's apparent reconciliation with Chris Brown affect her right to wear the fruity, shiny colors of CoverGirl? Tell them! Or just tell me in the comments section below.
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