The primary objective of marketing is to reach the target market and earns a maximum profit. However, it is not that easy to influence the consumers’ tastes and shift their preferences, promoting a particular product. Today’s market is flooded with a variety of products and services. Marketers of new products might have difficulties with occupying a certain market sector. The abundance of marketing messages and information overload may result in thcoconsumer’s confusion. To stand up in the crowd, the marketers’ of the product using brand endorsers” “According to McCracken (1989), endorsers can leverage their own popularity to create positive associations for brands in the minds of consumers. Brand managers are hoping to transfer this creation of associations to their own produ “t” (Chedi, n.d, p.2).
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Today one of the best ways for retail advertising is using celebrity endorsement. 25% of all television advertisements are using celebrities to promote their brand. Today marketers are investing a huge amount of advertisement budget for celebrity endorsement for promoting their brand. The reason for celebrity endorsement is that the image of the celebrity will positively influence the processing of selling. Attractiveness and trustworthiness of the celebrity are the main two instruments of influencing thcoconsumers’ preference” “or celebrity endorsements to be truly effective; attempts should be made to employ celebrity spokespersons who have direct connections with their endorsed products and who are perceived to be experts by the target respondent “s” (Bruce et al., 2004, p. 127).
The brand endorser is always an expert in some field; their words will get good acceptance from the public. A brand endorser is a person who is popular in that target market, and he/she must be credible, physically attractive, and likeability to the public.
The brand endorsers will provide information about the product and consumers and services and influence the consumers to buy the product. Their interaction may be short, but they are giving a strong influence on the minds of consumers.
- Responsibility of a brand endorser:
- Increasing the product awareness
- product information to the consumers
Creating an association in the consumer’s mind between the product and a particular idea.
The advantages of using celebrity endorsement are:
- It facilitates brand identification
- It helps to remove the negative attitude towards the brand
- It gives attention at the time of repositioning a brand it helpful for positioning a brand in a domestic and foreign country
- It affecting the purchase intention of consumers; consumers will give more attention to the product endorser than the quality and other aspects of the product.
- The advertisement of product using celebrity/brand endorser will remain iconconsumer’smemory.
- By using brand endorsers/celebrities for promoting their product, the product will get the value and image of that endorser.
The studies show that using celebrities or brand endorser causes to increase the positive attitude of consumers towards the advertisement, and ultimately it creates a positive attitude towards the product.
The disadvantage of using a brand endorser is that the negative aspects/incidents relating to the brand endorser are affected the product.
The fitness of the brand endorser/ celebrity to the product is a crucial one.
The role of brand endorser in the selling of a product:
Here Grant McCracken explaining the role of brand endorser with his theory- Meaning transfer theory. According to this theory, the image of every celebrity communicates a number of information units that will be transferred on their perception of the endorsed product. According to this theory, there are three main components of the meaning transfer process, such as decoding the message, transferring its meaning, and accepting it.
Decoding a message
The Pspespecialists’efforts are always aimed at creating a particular image of a celebrity in the public consciousness. Coupled with age and gender characteristics, thconconsumers’opinion of the person contributes to decoding the message.
The meaning of the message needs to be adapted to the personal peculiarities of the consumer.
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Selecting a product from a wide range of similar brands, a consumer pays attention not only to its functional value but to its attractiveness and symbolism as well. According to this theory, consumer purchases a product because of capturing some of the meaning inserted the celebrities on the product.
Examples of the best fit of the brand endorser and product and its implications
Tigerwood; he has the best combination for the software products, watches, energy drink, telecom, etc. He will attract all the kind of peoples and have influence in the standard peoples.
Angelina Jolie; is the best matching with the organic baby food, inner wears, body fit instruments, lipstick, etc. She is with the attraction among the ladies with her child-caring nature and is a good model.
Donald Trump; has the best combination of a model for business school, car, watches, etc. His business experience attracts all the students.
Kate Moss; is also the best combination for innerwear, jeans, diamonds, and I-pod. She makes the young ladies happy with her model life.
David Beckham; the best combination for the Beckham is jeans, hair cream, energy drink, sports shoe, etc. His style and personality make him get the attraction to the crowd.
Primary research rationale behind the product-endorser pairs chosen:
The encyclopedia is mainly targeted at the customers like students and teachers. This product will attract the reading peoples only. It is mainly targeted to the learning customers. These types of customers like to find their doubts and interesting topics from the encyclopedia. Tiger woods is a golf legend who is having lots of fans all over the world. With the advertisement of encyclopedia which will attract the intellectual customers, they like the peoples in that level as an endorser. Thus it will be the worst match to the product. For the software items, the survey reported Tiger woods will be the most matching combination. These customers will be attracted by the endorser and will result in more sales.
Organic baby foods are now becoming the target of most of the FMCG companies” “organic baby foods are a fast-growing segment of the prepared baby food market. Many parents today are choosing to feed their babies organic foods, even if the parentdondon’teat organics regularly themselves “s” (Corley, 2007, para.1).
The customers are the mothers who were having small children and infant babies. The target of the baby food companies is the loving and caring mothers who like to feed nutritious food to their babies. They will have various anxieties and worries with their children, mainly due to the eating habits. To exploit this situation, the endorser like Angelina Jolie, who is having a loving position among ladies all over the world, will attract customers. As she is famous for her beauty and acting skills, she had attracted the hearts of the people, and surely they will like her in this organic baby food ad. Thus this will be a good match. Apart from that, the survey participants mentioned the second-best combination as the endorser of jewels and then with the inner wears. Angelina is the worst in the endorser as TV advertisements.
Business schools are popular among students. All the students like to get an admission in any of the reputed business schools where they can improve their talents” “business school rankings have had a major impact on business schools themselves. At present most business schools implement marketing strategies for the purpose of increasing the ranking of the educational institution and attracting new applicants. Full-day workers develop programs aimed at enhancing public awareness and creating a positive image of the school. Though some experts doubt the effectiveness of these marketing efforts, the importance of branding the school and protecting its reputation cannot be underestimated, having a significant impact on thstustudents’choice.
Donald Trump is a celebrity by the NBC reality show. He is one of the business magnates from America. He is running several business enterprises and is the author of several books. A person like Trump can maximum exploit the mind of young business learners, and this type of endorser will always make a fine match to the advertisement of business school. The customers have the perception of the visuals by seeing Donald Trump in that. They will have a deep impact by seeing him in this ad, and the parents will allow their kids to go and study there. The people like to see him as the endorser of business schools, and then they like him as the endorser of the car.
English supermodel, Kate Moss, called as skinny supermodel us seen in her innerwear and skinny jeans as a model for several advertisements. Thus the survey participants are matching Kate moss as the endorser of innerwear. They chose her in this endorsement as she was a perfect model and had huge fans. The worst combination will be in the advertisements for the bike. No one likes to see a lady as the promoter of a bike advertisement in the lead role. High fat and high-calorie foods are now in the market in the form of dairy products, burgers, cheese, castle pudding, etc., making a huge response from the consumers. The high fat-containing foods are called junk foods, which will produce lots of troubles in health. Sometimes, these high-fat foods contain high calories also, and most people are fond of these kinds of varieties. This will also be a far good option for Kate Moss.
Most of the peoples like the sports. They will be very much attracted to sports and games. There are various events going on in countries like the UK and the USA. A celebrity from the sports section itself will gain the attraction of the advertisements for the sports varieties. After the football world cup and ahead of the 2012 London Olympics, people are attracted towards the sports, and this time, the organizations can gain huge profits. They can make these events colorful by promoting their sports costumes. A sportsmanlike David Beckham can initiate this task. He is a well-known footballer, and he is the person getting more income through his various advertisements in the world. He is familiar with the ambassador of the sports in England. A person like David Beckham can make the maximum use of the endorsement with the advertisement of jeans and then hair creams as he is a person with a variety of hairstyles. But the survey shows there will be the worst combination with the furniture ads, and no one likes him as the endorser of the furniture products.
Pros and cons of celebrity endorsements
From the above, it is crystal clear that to a very large extent, the use of celebrity endorsement could be a good marketing ploy for product makers, not only to increase revenue generation but also to compete confidently and competently in the fiercely competitive business market. The fact that celebrities endorse products gives an impression (sometimes false) that these people have actually tested and used these products or services, which, however, may not always be true. The fact that a celebrity endorses a food product does not necessarily mean that he/she uses this food product, or rides the car which he endorses, or wears exotic perfumes or costumes which he or she endorses. The main reason may be purely commercial, to get an exorbitant sum for allowing himself to be an advertising medium for products. For instance, Britney Spears used to endorse Pepsi products, but she is often photographed carrying a can oPepPepsi’scompetitive product, Coca Cola. So, people who believe that celebrity endorsements could mean an excellent and well-used product may not always be true.
There are several dangers of celebrity endorsement, as many producers could vouch for. For one, often it is the celebrity who gets all the publicity and not the product. For instance, when Michael Jordan promotes Nike sportswear, it is more often than not, Jordan who gets maximum publicity, and not the Nike product. Similarly, research studies have shown that when Britney Spears endorses Pepsi, it is she and not Pepsi who hogs the limelight. Perhaps this was one of the major reasons why Pepsi did not renew M Sp Spears’s contract since she was much larger than life than Pepsi, which the sponsors felt was not in tune with advertising and publicity objectives.
Another aspect is that this would trigger off a product war, which would have no end. With Pepsi signing in Spears, Coca-cola and other soft drink makers would be perforced to sign up other celebrities, and there would be no end to the competition. This does not really serve any purpose except escalate competitive bidding for products and services of all kinds and indirectly even hike up the prices of such products. It is important to pay attention to matching thcecelebrity’s image and the product brand in thcoconsumers’ consciousness” “A generic, well-liked celebrity endorsement will not have the same’ ‘pun’h’ as a celebrity endorsement in which the image of the celebrity matches the image of the bra” d” (Maclnnis, 2009, p. 117).
Celebrity endorsement alone cannot make a useless product a bestseller. The consumer is well aware that celebrities more often than not endorse for status and money and not because they are fond of the products, although this cannot be ruled out for all cases. The chief argument is that when the product is excellent and could sell on its own merits, what is the use of celebrity endorsements? In other words, not so good products need to be propped up with artificial marketing tactics, and celebrity endorsements could be one of them.
However, one needs also to consider the competitive markets and the strategies the rivals and competing firms employ, which may erode profitability and market share of the business. If the endorsement of celebrities could boost the bottom line and introduce the products to new and unexplored markets, why not try this option out also” “Celebrity endorsements can be an effective marketing strategy when the celebrity image, brand image, and consumer aspirations are taken into consideration, particularly for symbolic bran “s” (Maclnnis, 2009, p. 118).
In this context, it is also necessary to consider that the endorsements by celebrities should serve to endorse the products advertised by them and not enhance their own image, which is what is happening in the modern context. Most celebrity ads fail because it is the celebrities that get mileage and not the products they endorse. Companies should make sure that this does not happen under any circumstances, and the money which they pay should be used exclusively for promoting and adding value to products and not increase the public image and enhance the publicity of concerned celebrities.
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