Celebrity Fallout

September 1, 2006
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Celebrity Fallout

Datamonitor reported on a new U.K.-based survey published by the AccountAbility and the National Consumer Council that questioned consumers on their shopping habits and how they judged manufacturers’ product and ethical responsibility. The survey found that the most trustworthy information was obtained by packaging, then consumer watchdog groups and family and friends.
What did rank rather low was celebrity product endorsements. Why? Although consumers seek to give themselves a better image by choosing brands that celebrities endorse, too many products now are endorsed by celebrities, which makes selecting these products less special. One-in-four advertisements currently features a celebrity vs. one-in-eight 10 years ago, Datamonitor reports.
But some companies have been staying away from using big names because their brands are being overshadowed by high-profile celebrities. A good example is Pepsi, which dropped deals with singers Beyonce Knowles and Britney Spears, in part due to perceptions that attention was being drawn away from the brand itself.
No movie more brilliantly pokes fun at endorsements than Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby. The movie laughs at the well-known overuse of ads placed on NASCAR cars and driver sponsorships and endorsements. Beverages get several nods in the movie, but none so funny as when Ricky Bobby (Will Ferrell) takes a break while praying to plug PowerAde and its new flavor Mystic Mountain Blueberry (created for the magic of movies). While you’re able to laugh at the lengths to which celebrity endorsements stretch in this movie, the reality of it is that consumers are saying “too much” already. They would rather have good products from companies they trust.

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