If your company is given the opportunity to choose a celebrity to sell your products, it could serve as a gateway to raise awareness of your brand image and even influence sales. However, your company can be in trouble if it chooses the wrong celebrity or, if the celebrity or individual you selected turns out to be someone you didn’t know they really were.
Take the recent scandal of Subway’s Jared Fogle, for example. In the past, Fogle served as inspiring proof that a “Subway diet” can lead to a healthy and delicious lifestyle. His massive weight loss while on the Subway diet became an inspiration to millions of us. However, when Fogle himself was involved in an illegal scandal that ultimately tainted Subway’s brand name, the company suffered severe reputation harm. Who knows if Subway will ever be able to regain the market position they held for so many years due to their “celebrity” connection.
Selecting a celebrity to represent your company can be an extremely complicated and tricky task—your company must take into consideration what type of brand image it is aiming for, and how the respective celebrity may potentially influence this reputation. The celebrity must have complementing values, characteristics, and morals in order for the partnership to be successful, and more often than not, if done right, it can serve as an enormous booster for your company’s image. Take Burberry’s success, for instance. This fashion giant partnered up with Emma Watson, who flaunted their iconic trench coats and plaid patterned handbags while sporting a chic, modern haircut in their fashion campaign. Watson’s already admired reputation of being a powerful and influential female figures aided Burberry’s brand image, as people all across the globe now associate the poise and charisma of Emma Watson with Burberry’s classic styles. This perfect partnership helped the company earn more than 245 million dollars in profit that year, nearly 25% higher than in the prior year.
The pairing of celebrities with your company can either be a match made in heaven, or a matched made in — well, you know where. If you are considering using a celebrity, or even making someone into a celebrity through your brand, be sure you do your homework first.