MY VIEWS ON CELEBRITY ENDORSEMENT ARTICLE
In the recent issue of BUSINESS TODAY (14th April 2013) there was a cover story titled GOD OF BIG DEALS showing M S Dhoni in the form of a multi-armed Hindu deity carrying different products that he endorses. Total endorsement earnings work out to Rs.100 crores !
This is what I had written to BT by way of a Letter to the Editor:
MAKE HAY WHILE THE SUN SHINES
This refers to your cover story on MS DHONI under the caption of CELEBRITY MANAGEMENT titled “GOD OF BIG THINGS” (BT April 14th 2013).
The statistics are mind-boggling. The strategies to grab eye-balls and endorsement campaigns of around 17 leading brands are innovative and record-breaking indeed. M S Dhoni indeed deserves the sobriquet “Captain COOL!”
The subject of celebrity endorsement has been debated umpteen times in several Management Institutes and in subjects like Advertising Management and Brand Management.
Celebrity Endorsement, no doubt, has quite a few advantages such as: enhancement of brand equity, changing consumers’ attitude toward a brand, contributing freshness and adding some new dimensions for a brand, manipulating culture road blocks to improve worldwide reputation, building brand credibility in a short period of time, helping advertisements to stand out from surrounding clutter and improving their communicative ability, underpinning competitive differential advantage among other companies, making advertisements believable, helping in brand name recognition, enhancing message recall, influencing consumer’s purchase intentions, and creating a distinct personality of the endorsed brand.
However, Mahi needs to keep in mind that some disadvantages too can topple his apple-cart! For example: consumers might not believe that the endorser really consumes the product that he endorses, consumers give less credibility to celebrities who endorse many products, while single endorser for one product is often seen as boredom, yet consumers might get confused by multiple celebrity endorsements, often celebrities who are blamed for negative events can have detrimental effects on the products they endorse, if the celebrity loses his fame, his image changes, resulting in contradicting image of endorsed brand, sometimes, ”Vampire Effect” can be perceived, when endorsing celebrity is too attractive, drawing attention away from the product, quite often endorser’s effectiveness is reduced when there is a bad fit between the endorsing person and the product.
So the message to M S DHONI is: Yes, Make Hay While The Sun Shines, but do remember that : When it rains, most birds head for shelter; the Eagle is the only bird that, in order to avoid the rain, starts flying above the cloud.
J S BROCA,NEW DELHI,2ND April 2013
A highly edited view of my letter has been published in the latest issue of BT dated 28th April 2013 as under:
Your cover story on M S Dhoni (April 14) has thoroughly analysed the celebrity endorsement business. The statistics are mind-boggling. And Dhoni indeed deserves the sobriquet “Captain Cool”. However, he needs to keep in mind that some reverses on the field may upset his apple cart. So the message for Dhoni is : make hay while the sun shines.
J S Broca, New Delhi.
The above short version of my letter did not do justice with my views on the subject matter. In the garb of space constraint, the editorial staff as usual, has chopped off important points and what has been published looks just like a skeleton bereft of meat!
J S BROCA,18TH APRIL 2013