Don’t be too excited first, when your company has signed a million dollar deal for an annual brand endorsement with your local big time celebrity. There is no need to be too hopeful while thinking of all the beautiful things that your company can get, such as the tremendous increase in your product sales, people rushing to buy your product the moment they saw your celebrity telling them how good your product is on the TV commercials.
The truth is, it won’t happen. Celebrity marketing won’t work today in the era of smart and educated customers. And here are the 3 big reasons why.
Reason #1: A Celebrity is Paid to “Love” Your Products
A smart consumer today can see right through that celebrities are just acting to love your brands and products by showing it in your prints and media advertisements. Consumers today know, pretty well, that the company has paid thousands or even millions of marketing dollars for the celebrities to act, to say out their slogans during TV ads filming, recite the script that their clients’ marketing officer has pre-written for them, and by pretending to be happy using their products or services.
Companies CMOs are often blinded by the myth that celebrity sells, they will think that the more popular the celebrity that they engaged is, the more sales they will get, and therefore more customers will just flock to their doors and buy their brands. Hence companies don’t mind spending millions of dollars just to get the most popular celebrity to endorse their products. Once the endorsement contract is done, the CMOs or marketing manager will think that their job is done, and they sit back, relax and shake their legs.
However, as a performing marketer, you do not have to follow the herd of these so-called experienced marketing managers who thinks celebrity marketing is the best and only solution for them.
What you should do, is using your budget well enough by creating converting marketing strategies that will bring you customers realistically instead of relying on the celebrity to bring in the dough.
Reason #2: A Celebrity is not Your Product Specialist
A celebrity will only memorize the script that you have created for him or her on what to say in your TV commercials. They will only say whatever features or benefits of your particular product or brand based on the script you have given to them to say in front of the cameras. Celebrities are not your brand evangelists either because you will never know whether they are using your products regularly behind the cameras or not.
Reason #3: A Celebrity Does not Represent Your Targeted Prospects
Ask yourself this very, very simple question, who are the ones who would likely buy your products and brands? The celebrity or your targeted customers? Your customers right? So getting celebrities to say all the good things about your brand on the TV commercials will not have that significant impact on your targeted prospects at all. Your targeted customers may be just anyone on the street who don’t live the high flying lives of celebrities.
However, these group of people makes up almost 100% of your market share, and they have a higher chance in buying your product out of their own hard earned money compared to a celebrity whom you have to pay them millions in order to ‘enjoy’ your product.
One important thing to take note is that peer influence between a customer and a customer is the most effective marketing strategy today. Customers today are more likely to be influenced, to buy a particular brand, by their own network of friends. This is because their friends are genuine and they are not paid to sell them. This type of peer to peer influence, also commonly known as word of mouth marketing. It is more powerful than the “Celebrity-to-Consumer” or the “Company-to-Consumer”approach.
By understanding and not to believe in the myth that celebrity marketing is the “Be all and End all” for the CMOs today, we can then effectively use our marketing and branding dollars well so that we can come out with higher conversion ads instead.