The Marketing Corner: Marketing Strategies for Using Celebrities

March 27, 2016 Updated: March 29, 2016

There is an old saying: “What’s in a name?”

Well, if you are well-known, it could carry weight. And used properly by a brand, it could bring a financial impact and scale against a desired target audience. Personalities can come in many forms: celebrities (actors and actresses), influencers (bloggers or vloggers), on-air personalities, and entertainers, etc. As you can see, it could encompass almost anyone who is popular and has influence over people.

Just take a look at the media landscape. One can easily see many celebrities and influencers hawking numerous products on-air, online, and on-site.

There are a variety of reasons to consider using celebrities or influencers within a company’s messaging strategy. One prime reason is the immediate acceptance of a brand by using someone with cache to help sell brand attributes to your target audience. Other reasons they can help:

  • Create needed awareness
  • Buzz factor for PR efforts are heighten especially with social media influence the celebrity may have
  • Trust and credibility garnered to enhance favorability of the brand
  • Create an emotional connection
  • Build upon a brand’s “cool” factor to resonate with a desired target audience
  • Drive purchase intent and word of mouth recommendations

Now, some schools of thoughts may not see the need for celebrities or influencers to convince a purchase. However, in the world fueled by social media and enormous amount of video content being consumed, celebrities have carved out a unique place within the marketing landscape. It’s a means to keep fresh messaging that can evolve with the changing whims of consumers.

Celebrities have carved out a unique place within the marketing landscape.

Celebrities, generally speaking, have a longer shelf life. Of course, a company needs to do its homework before signing a personality type to work as a brand ambassador. Some major companies will perform background checks to minimize any surprises. If one lacks the resources to perform these task, there are companies that perform these services.

Finally, it’s important to know that one size does not fit all. Be very discerning when selecting a celebrity type. As an example, if you sell fur coats you shouldn’t select an ambassador that is a supporter of PETA. No credibility is gained in that relationship.

Be mindful of your overall objectives and decide if using any kind of celebrity is aligned with your brand’s overall marketing strategy.

Adele Lassere is a marketing/advertising consultant with 20+ years experience, freelance writer and author of Elements of Buying (a self-help advertising guide), available at Adele was listed as Black Enterprises 2011 Top Execs in Marketing & Advertising and Black Enterprises 2013 Top Women Executives in Advertising & Marketing. Contact: