Others with five BET nominations each are Drake and and Nicki Minaj, while Beyoncé, Alicia Keys and Melanie Fiona are all up for four. Rihanna, B.o.B, Young Money and Fabolous received three nods apiece.
While Bieber may seem a far reach for a BET Award, Stephen Hill, BET head of programming, praised the 16-year-old for the "rhythm in his music ... He makes the type of music our audience likes."
As nominations were announced on Tuesday, organizers also said, "Justin Bieber has crossed the color boundaries in the way hip-hop has the other way for a number of years."
Winners will be announced at a Los Angeles ceremony to be hosted by Queen Latifah on June 27. For the complete list of nominees, go to BET.com.