Lil Nas X and Nicki Minaj have both signed big brand partnership deals. Lil Nas has partnered with M&Ms on a mission to bring people together using the power of music and sweets. Nicki Minaj, meanwhile, is aiming to help gambling platform MaximBet convince more women to waste their money on sports betting. But which is more achievable?
Hard to say really, although it’s a little easier to work out what Minaj’s new brand partnership actually involves. Whereas with the Lil Nas / M&Ms tie up… well, the press release says that the musician and sweets brand will “leverage the power of music to lay the groundwork for a new platform that brings people together to celebrate music, build connections, and enjoy more moments of fun through a series of initiatives set to kick off later this year”.
Allison Miazga-Bedrick – Senior Brand Director at M&Ms parent company Mars Wrigley – attempts to explain further: “In the world Mars wants tomorrow, society is inclusive. And through the M&Ms brand we’re committed to inspiring moments of connection and fun by encouraging a deeper sense of belonging”. Yeah, that’s just waffle, isn’t it?
“Music is one of the most powerful tools to bring people together”, she adds. “Like our iconic M&Ms brand, music sparks nostalgia, memories, and fun and we are THRILLED to be able to partner with one of the most trailblazing artists in the world, Lil Nas X, to help us further cement M&Ms’ role within entertainment”.
Still not really sure what any of this involves, but my guess is some sort of website with a social element and some video content. If you were hoping Lil Nas X might be on hand to provide some clarity, well, his quote suggests that he has absolutely no idea what’s happening either.
“M&Ms is iconic and I’m a huge fan of the brand”, he says. “I’m excited to work with them on some really cool projects this year that are as colourful as they are”.
Sure. OK. Let’s move beyond meaningless marketing waffle to the specifics of this Nicki Minaj deal. Which is easier to understand. In that we’re told that the Minaj / MaximBet alliance will involve the musician and brand collaborating on merchandise, parties and fan experiences that seek to combine entertainment, sports, celebrity and, of course, betting. Though Minaj also gets some of those made up job titles that used to be super popular with music brand partnerships.
Specifically, Minaj is becoming an ambassador and strategic advisor for and to MaximBet – which is an offshoot of men’s magazine Maxim. Currently live in twelve US states and the Canadian province of Ontario, it wants to broaden its market by getting more ladies involved. Men have obviously long been happy to throw their money in the bin when it comes to online betting, but seemingly women are still a ‘growth market’ in this domain.
“I don’t think I’ve ever been prouder of a collaboration”, says Minaj, dubiously. “Merging business savvy power moves with my natural, creative, sexy, fun, and fashion-forward expression is just so spot on as it relates to this partnership. I’m ready to fully step into my potential as a young, influential queen, and owner and open doors for others to dream big. Get ready for the sexy parties and remember: scared money don’t make NO MONEY! HA! Place your bets! Let’s GO!”
And that’s how you do it. MaximBet CEO Daniel Graetzer adds: “Nicki is best known around the world as a mega superstar, but we know her as a brilliant businesswoman. Her role as a strategic advisor to MaximBet will be invaluable to us. She’s built one of the most powerful brands in the world, her own, and she’s applying that same savvy and creativity to our lifestyle sports betting brand. I couldn’t be more excited to be working with her – she is creative, smart, passionate and bold. There is no one better suited to helping us take this form of entertainment mainstream”.
In terms of made up job titles, there’s one more to mention. Because Minaj isn’t just getting on board with MaximBet, she’s also taking up a new role at Maxim magazine as part of the deal too. She is now a Creative Director for the publication, which, says the press release, “will enable her to influence editorial, photography, profiles, covers and future events for the iconic publisher”. Uh huh.
“We are THRILLED to partner with Nicki Minaj”, says Sardar Biglari, Editor-In-Chief of Maxim. “She is an extraordinary entrepreneur and the leading artist of her generation, a combination that will be transformative for Maxim”.
So that’s all great. I’m so happy for everyone involved. Especially for anyone who has any idea what Lil Nas X is doing with M&Ms. Nicki Minaj’s deal – by the way – also serves to promote her upcoming tour dates and new album ‘NM5’. Which I guess – by me simply mentioning them here – just happened. See, the system works!