• Tuesday, July 23, 2024
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BusinessDay

Brand endorsement by celebrities

brands

Endorsement is a form of brand communication in which a celebrity acts as the brand’s spokesperson and certifies the brand’s claim and position by extending his/her personality, popularity, stature in the society or expertise in the field to the brand. In a market with a very high proliferation of local, regional and international brands, celebrity endorsement was thought to provide a distinct differentiation.  Over the years, many aspiring brands have jumped on to this celebrity endorsement bandwagon. This principle states that an attractive endorser will have a positive impact on the endorsement. The endorser should be attractive to the target audience in certain aspects like physical appearance, intellectual capabilities, athletic competence, and lifestyle.

It is almost a rule of thumb, according to brand experts, that an endorser that appears attractive with the features described above, has a greater chance of enhancing the memory of the brand that he/she endorses. He has credibility. Credibility is defined here as the celebrities’ perceived expertise and trustworthiness. As celebrity endorsements act as an external cue that enable consumers to sift through the tremendous brand clutter in the market, the credibility factor of the celebrity greatly influences the acceptance with consumers says Abdul Abubakar a brand manager with Emirate Media Resources. Sometimes, celebrity endorsements would drive up your revenue by more than 50% while at other times; it doesn’t do too much to increase your sales. So, before you roll out funds for a celebrity endorsement campaign, be sure that you have clear and realistic expectations.

Celebrities are always doing their best to give back to their fans and the society as a whole by supporting charitable causes. If you are interested in a particular celebrity, what you have to do is to find out what charitable causes they are supporting and then offer your business as a platform to support that course. Multiple brand endorsements obviously come with huge financial rewards.  To become a celebrity, in most cases, requires hard work, developing your talent, exploiting media opportunities, high networking ability, appealing personality, etc. Every celebrity is interested in getting maximum financial reward for all of the above efforts, which many of them interpret as investment.

The world has now changed, we are living in the modern era where people do not use or buy the product only because it is endorsed by the celebrities. People now seriously search for the quality and design. Customers use magazines and other sources of information to gain knowledge of the product that they thought of buying. They compare products through internet before paying money for it. Hence, people no longer buy a product only because it is endorsed by celebrities.

One of the major argument for using a celebrity as a product endorsement is that it can link the product to the celebrity’s skills.

The concept is also good for them because they need huge funds to sustain their expensive celebrity status which comes with flashy cars, designer clothing, expensive holidays, and houses in choice locations.

On the flip side, the brand value of celebrities with multiple endorsements tends to slide with serial public exposure. Usually because of the financial terms involved, brand managers would normally want to get maximum benefit from the ambassador. As a result, the ambassador appears on the brand’s advertisements; he attends all corporate events. All these are complimented with high decibel media coverage that makes the ambassador a permanent feature in the media.

The novelty of a celebrity endorsement gets diluted with over exposure. This over exposure naturally leads to loss in brand value and before long, discerning brand managers look elsewhere for a fresh choice. No brand wants to associate with a ‘tired’ celebrity.

The major challenge to celebrities is how to balance the pull of huge financial rewards and keeping their brand value fresh and appealing.  Celebrity Icon and brand ambassador for renowned conglomerates, Kate Henshaw is a product of successful brand endorsements, even at collaborations on music, videos and marketing campaigns. The happy single mother of one, who had been able to tackle many hazards in her life straight on, though her political ambitions were not so flattery at some point, noted briefly that she was happy to be part of Nigerian posterity for durable brands. Brand Ambassadors bring their endorsements into limelight. They also create positive feelings towards brands, connect user to brand.

The success of the Onga Powder Seasoning, the famous seasoning brand has since brought a craving from consumers to have other cooking condiments that can be used in different parts of the cooking process, a development which inform the launch of the product in cube format courtesy to brand endorsements that supported the business prospects. Kate admitted in a short interview with Business Day at an event in Lagos recently, that the most important fulfillment was authentication and value impact of the product represented. ‘I admit that I am willing to identify with quality of the product or service especially for the Nigerian enterprise.’

Julie Agnes Omeike  & Frank Eleanya