Celeb Ads the Worst. What About Tweets?
A new report finds that advertising featuring celebrities
are rarely worth the paper the endorsement deals are signed on.
Peter Daboll, CEO of Ace Metrix, writing on the Advertising
his firm’s study of every nationally televised ad for the first 11 months of
2010 found that spots featuring celebrities either performed below average
or just at average. "One-fifth of celebrity ads had a negative impact
on advertising effectiveness," according to the Ace Metrix study, 2010
Celebrity Advertisements: Exposing a Myth of Advertising Effectiveness.
worst celebrity endorsement of 2010 was Tiger Woods’ "Did You Learn
Anything?" spot for Nike. Following in order of ineffectiveness were Lance
Armstrong (RadioShack), Kenny Mayne (Gillette), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Nationwide
Auto Insurance) and Donald Trump (Macy’s).
"The great news in all of this is that brands should not have to feel
compelled to shell out big bucks on a celebrity," write Mr. Daboll. "Instead,
they should be charging their agencies with creating ads that have a strong,
watchable creative message."
Mr. Daboll maintains that today’s consumer
is more informed and too pressed for time to be moved by a celebrity in an
ad. In fact, he argues that consumers are "more
likely to be influenced by someone in their social network than a weak celebrity
So what happens if a consumer has a celebrity in their social
network? Take Twitter, for example.
A new report on the Poynter website
draws attention to the practice of celebrities engaged in sending out sponsored
tweets. One company, Ad.ly, sent out over 20,000 sponsored tweets last year.
Celebrities typically earn a few hundred dollars from a single tweet although
some high-profile people with the last name Kardashian can earn up to $10,000.
"You have 50 billion dollars a year spent globally on endorsements," Arnie
Gullov-Singh, CEO of Ad.ly CEO, told Poynter. "It just hasn’t
moved online yet, and that’s what we’re changing."
added, "In social media, people are publishers, and
consumers are following people. If you want (Twitter users) to follow your
brand and engage with your brand and monetize your brand in social media, you
need to have a real person behind that."
While each Ad.ly sponsored tweet
ends with either "ad" or #ad,
there is a question whether consumers are clear that celebrities are endorsing
a product because they’ve been paid.
"It all boils down to the question of how easily readers, users, consumers,
and citizens can recognize the distinction between advertising content and
editorial content," Katy Culver, a professor of multimedia journalism
at the University of Wisconsin, told Poynter. "I’d be very
curious how many people recognize that hashtag."
"When you see celebrity endorsements on TV, they’re clearly ads," Mr.
Gullov-Singh, told Poynter. "Online, these celebrities, musicians,
actors, athletes are all being themselves and being authentic."
- Celebrity Advertisements: Exposing
A Myth Of Advertising Effectiveness – Ace
- Celebrities in Advertising Are Almost Always a Big Waste of Money – Advertising
Age (reg. required)
- News organizations sign deals for sponsored tweets, then do not participate
in them – Poynter.
What is your reaction to the Ace Metrix research on the effectiveness of celebrity ads? What about the use of celebrities sending out tweets they are paid?