A Creative Review: Celebrities and Billboards
Welcome back to A Creative Review with James Cooper. Today Coop takes a look at ads featuring celebrity spokespeople.
If you read any historical books about advertising, there is a famous quote from a client who says something along the lines of ‘I know 50% of my advertising doesn’t work, I’m just not sure which 50%’. It’s a familiar problem. Advertising is not a science. There are no guarantees. However, it is assumed that one of the less risky options is to go with a celebrity endorsement.
Photo credit: Jockey Buzz
The theory here is that Jennifer Anniston and Tim Tebow et al. are instantly recognizable and of course desirable. ‘She drinks it. I want to be like her. So I’ll drink it.’ For many marketers this seems like a no brainer and yet there is no real evidence to suggest a celebrity endorsement will help a brand. In some instances, (probably anything to do with Charlie Sheen), an endorsement can have a negative effect.
Photo credit: Daily Billboard
I think there may be some merit in long term associations such as William Shatner for Priceline or Ashton Kutcher for Nikon. Clearly they will involve some serious bucks - yet over the long run they will probably pay off. However, these billboards feel like a one off. They will give the brands a little bit of a lift, but it’s what the brands do after someone sees Jennifer or Tebow that will really help sales.
That’s all folks! Want to get involved? Send us the best or worst billboards you’ve seen and we’ll choose one every week. Just email firstname.lastname@example.org.