The public worships celebrities – and has done so for ages. Quite literally, too! The concept of idolising the individuals that are outstanding in a certain way dates back to as far as the Ancient Greece era and its admiration for athletes. The millennia that followed failed to even remotely diminish this trend: we still love a winner, perhaps now more than ever.
Wherever they are, fans will gather. They no longer have to be physically there to inspire dedicated advocates – mere social media presence will suffice to reach millions. Katy Perry’s Twitter profile has 99 million followers, and that is just one of her many channels. Add Facebook, YouTube and Instagram, each with millions of viewers of their own, and you will get a slight grasp on how massive her audience really is.
No wonder brands are quick to jump on the bandwagon and hand lucrative deals to celebrities in exchange for their endorsement.
The vast number of people a popular personality can reach is not the only reason behind marketers’ eagerness for such partnerships. Celebrities are much more than just human advertising spaces: they evoke trust, confidence, admiration and hold the power to inspire new trends and fads. As stated by Marketwatch, a single endorsement can provide an immediate 4% boost in sales.
Common folks aspire to live the same sort of lifestyle they do, to own what they own – and while a multi-million dollar villa in LA may be difficult to acquire, Kate Middleton’s £31 black Topshop dress was not. The moment she wore it, it became an instant sold-out.
However, celebrity endorsement is not all fun and games, as it comes with several barriers and restrictions. The first one is, quite obviously, the price for such an endeavour. If it’s big stars we are talking about, your budget needs to be equally large to say the least. It will pay off, though. Consider the seemingly-staggering amount of $1 billion that Christiano Ronaldo received for his recent deal with Nike. According to Hookit, his social media presence in the last year alone has provided the company with $474 million in value. Nike should therefore see a return on their investment in a little more than two years, and the deal lasts a lifetime.
To choose Ronaldo for an endorser for a sportswear brand was a no-brainer. However, it is not always as simple to find a perfect match between a celebrity and a product. The audience of a given popular personality, regardless of its size, may not be the same as your target audience, and the very same Ronaldo may not be able to sell, say, university textbooks. Take your time to research your potential customers, find out who is it that they respect, follow and admire, and only then prepare a partnership deal. Otherwise you should increase the overall brand familiarity, but your actual sales make stay unaffected.
Another important factor to bear in mind is that celebrities attract enormous publicity. And while you will benefit from a positive image spillover for as long as your endorser is widely liked, you will equally suffer if they lose their reputation. You may have taken every effort to choose an uncontroversial public figure, but as we all have seen in the recent years, even the mightiest can fall. Once they do, you must be prepared to break off the deal to protect your brand from falling with them.
But is contracting a billion-dollar celebrity a precondition for an endorsement to pay off? Not anymore! We live in the digital era, where an influencer is not necessarily a Hollywood star – it can well be a girl or boy next door, as long as they run blogs, YouTube channels or social media profiles. If you lack the budget or a particular need for a high-profile celebrity partnership, consider turning to online influencers. They have their own unique set of traits: they are popular, yet approachable, closer to their audiences and easier to identify with.
By virtue of that, their support is more often perceived as a bona fide opinion rather than an advertisement, and thus can lead to a solid increase in your sales.
At 2 Sisters PR, we have a vast experience in celebrity endorsement and bloggers outreach and can arrange either or both. Should you wish to discuss the opportunities for your brand, do not hesitate to contact us – give us a call at +44 (0) 7808 522 822 or send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org!