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Unlocking the Power of Celebrity for PR

Unlocking the Power of Celebrity for PR

Havas Global Comms

Havas Global Comms

January 30, 2018

How can you best leverage a celebrity in a PR campaign? And is it worth it?

Engaging with a celebrity for a PR campaign is a process and an investment

O’Dwyer’s

Tara Reid
VP, Havas Formula Chicago

Jan. 30, 2018

 

Michael Jordan for Nike. Oprah and Jessica Simpson for Weight Watchers. Britney Spears for Pepsi. The list goes on and on … these campaigns have all successfully leveraged a celebrity to tout a brand or product, and they’ve all been memorable. How can you not think of Jennifer Garner when you hear “What’s in your wallet?”

Celebrity endorsements remain valuable despite a rise in social influencers serving as brand ambassadors (or a celeb’s occasional, crisis-inducing misstep). Whether it’s intended to boost sales or loyalty or inspire consumer confidence, many brands still use actors, athletes and musicians in their advertising efforts.

But what about PR? How can you best leverage a celebrity in a PR campaign? And is it worth it?

Celebrities have the ability to drive more awareness and exposure for a brand or product, and they can add a timeliness or relevance that might be lacking based on the narrative.

Before you pick up the phone and start dialing agents, however, consider these five guidelines to help determine if the star power of a celebrity partnership can help ignite your brand.

This isn’t advertising. When it comes to a public relations campaign, celebrities are used differently than in advertising. Most effectively, they serve as spokespeople — to speak to consumers via press on behalf of a brand. Celebs are best utilized to share a brand’s or product’s narrative and earn the trust of consumers. They need to know details and differentiators, and be prepared to speak about them with sincerity, whether they use the brand or product regularly or not. If a celebrity is already being used in an advertising campaign, it would be ideal to also tap into them for publicity. Be sure to discuss PR early on and incorporate this into your contract or deal memo when negotiating creative needs.

Keep it real. There’s nothing worse than watching celebrities endorse products you know they never use. It’s awkward, disingenuous and risks ruining the relationship between a brand and its consumer. So, how does a brand choose the right person? First, it helps if the celebrity is actually a fan of the brand or product. There needs to be automatic linkage. Marketers can and should use a celeb’s love for a product to their advantage, as that relationship can turn into a more formal partnership. A great example of this is John Mayer and his love for Justin’s Nut Butter. When Mayer tweeted his desire for Cookie Dough-flavored Almond Butter, Justin’s created the flavor just for him and sent him his own jar. Mayer gushed about the “hand-made batch of nirvana” across his social platforms, and media caught on like wild fire. While this organic relationship never turned into a formal partnership, it easily could have. Mayer’s authentic passion for Justin’s and alignment with the brand would make him a perfect fit. So, when selecting a celebrity spokesperson, ask yourself if the person could genuinely help bring the brand to life.

Read the full article

Engaging with a celebrity for a PR campaign is a process and an investment

O’Dwyer’s

Tara Reid
VP, Havas Formula Chicago

Jan. 30, 2018

 

Michael Jordan for Nike. Oprah and Jessica Simpson for Weight Watchers. Britney Spears for Pepsi. The list goes on and on … these campaigns have all successfully leveraged a celebrity to tout a brand or product, and they’ve all been memorable. How can you not think of Jennifer Garner when you hear “What’s in your wallet?”

Celebrity endorsements remain valuable despite a rise in social influencers serving as brand ambassadors (or a celeb’s occasional, crisis-inducing misstep). Whether it’s intended to boost sales or loyalty or inspire consumer confidence, many brands still use actors, athletes and musicians in their advertising efforts.

But what about PR? How can you best leverage a celebrity in a PR campaign? And is it worth it?

Celebrities have the ability to drive more awareness and exposure for a brand or product, and they can add a timeliness or relevance that might be lacking based on the narrative.

Before you pick up the phone and start dialing agents, however, consider these five guidelines to help determine if the star power of a celebrity partnership can help ignite your brand.

This isn’t advertising. When it comes to a public relations campaign, celebrities are used differently than in advertising. Most effectively, they serve as spokespeople — to speak to consumers via press on behalf of a brand. Celebs are best utilized to share a brand’s or product’s narrative and earn the trust of consumers. They need to know details and differentiators, and be prepared to speak about them with sincerity, whether they use the brand or product regularly or not. If a celebrity is already being used in an advertising campaign, it would be ideal to also tap into them for publicity. Be sure to discuss PR early on and incorporate this into your contract or deal memo when negotiating creative needs.

Keep it real. There’s nothing worse than watching celebrities endorse products you know they never use. It’s awkward, disingenuous and risks ruining the relationship between a brand and its consumer. So, how does a brand choose the right person? First, it helps if the celebrity is actually a fan of the brand or product. There needs to be automatic linkage. Marketers can and should use a celeb’s love for a product to their advantage, as that relationship can turn into a more formal partnership. A great example of this is John Mayer and his love for Justin’s Nut Butter. When Mayer tweeted his desire for Cookie Dough-flavored Almond Butter, Justin’s created the flavor just for him and sent him his own jar. Mayer gushed about the “hand-made batch of nirvana” across his social platforms, and media caught on like wild fire. While this organic relationship never turned into a formal partnership, it easily could have. Mayer’s authentic passion for Justin’s and alignment with the brand would make him a perfect fit. So, when selecting a celebrity spokesperson, ask yourself if the person could genuinely help bring the brand to life.

Read the full article

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