Updated: Oct 28, 2020
So you have made the choice to get a celebrity involved with your brand to boost sales, increase your following and your brand awareness. That's great, but which celebrity are you going to choose to endorse your brand?
In this article we take a look at how important it is to choose the right celebrity for your brand and how to choose one without throwing away your money with any old famous face.
Choosing a celebrity for brand endorsement
Celebrities are still a great way to market your brand, but it needs to be done correctly otherwise it can come off a bit silly, desperate and the wrong decision can have a disastrous outcome!
The idea is to keep your brand values in-line with your choice of celebrity. You will want a good connection and association with the celebrity and your brand, and you need to be sure that their audience matches your target audiences.
Now, these 3 key points don't all have to be used, but you will want to choose at least one when finding a celebrity to endorse your brand. Let's take a look at the 3 key points in detail, with examples of each.
Your brand values are key to your business and should be expressed in all aspects of your marketing to keep your brand's feel, momentum, messaging and connection consistent.
Celebrity endorsements are no exception when it comes to brand values. You will want to match your values with the personality and traits of the celebrity.
For example if your brand's core values are playful, fun and exciting - you definitely shouldn't approach a politician! Jokes aside, you will want to find a celebrity, which expresses these values through their personality.
Connection & association
Your choice of celebrity should have a connection or association with your brand.
A good example here is with Virgin Media, who boast fast broadband. They wanted to focus on promoting the broad-band's fast speeds, so they went ahead and got Usain Bolt - the fastest man on the planet.
Connection and association doesn't always have to be in the form of a physical trait, it can just be the connection they have in your industry. For example an animal welfare charity may look to Sir David Attenborough to endorse the brand as he is well known for the protection of animals.
There is no point in getting a celebrity to endorse your brand if their audience isn't a part of your target audience (with the exception of the 2 key points above). Think of it as fishing, you will want to use the right bait to attract the right kind of fish! The celebrity being your bait, but don't call them that.
For example, a car manufacturer may want to choose a celebrity that has a large automotive following such as Jeremy Clarkson. You will still want to make sure other aspects of the celebrity doesn't affect your brand negatively.
Another example, if the relevant audience was the health and fitness sector, countless vitamin, protein and gym-wear brands seek out athletes and bodybuilders to promote their brand, because their audiences are perfect and the celebrities have an inspirational impact.
What can go wrong if I choose the wrong celebrity for my brand?
It may not be the end of the world if you choose the wrong celebrity, but depending on the severity, the wrong celebrity could seriously damage your brand!
Choosing the wrong celebrity for your brand can result in dis-trust and a lack of credibility for your brand, along with a negative reputation. This can cause you to lose followers, sales to fall and consumers & customers to look elsewhere, which is the exact opposite of what you will want to happen.
Let's do a throwback to when David Beckham signed a £4 million, four year contract with the hair styling brand Brylcreem. Half way through the contract Beckham decided to shave his luscious locks off! As you can't really endorse a hair styling brand with a bald head, Brylcreem took a hit, reportedly having a 25% drop in sales. Ouch!
So when it comes to celebrities, make sure you do your research. Don't choose a celebrity just because you're a fan, and be sure to use our 3 key points to help make your decision.
We recently covered the 5 Pillars of Influencer Marketing, which is also a great guide to picking the right influencer for your social media campaign. Influencers are a hybrid of celebrity endorsement and product placement crossed with user-generated content-driven marketing campaigns so are a fantastic way to utilise the pull of a well-known figure without necessarily having to use a huge amount of budget.
Want to look at how you can leverage and utilise influencers and celebrities in your marketing efforts? Get in touch with our team via firstname.lastname@example.org or on +44 (0)1780757 666.