The Chanel advertising team may have noticed that the perfume ad starring Brad Pitt, the actor appears in distress due to a probable existential crisis, maybe not exactly a brilliant piece of marketing. The ad, filmed in black and white, shows-meditative and Brad Pitt with beard alone in a room. “It’s a trip,” says crestfallen. “Journeys end, but we continue to tour the world, and we turn to him plans fade; triumph dreams But wherever you go, there you are.. My fate, my destiny, my fortune.”.
The ad went viral, but not for the reason they expected Chanel executives.Ridiculed by the pretentious and esoteric tone, the commercial was parodied by Conan O’Brien on the show Saturday Night Live and “virtually everyone on the Internet,” according to The Huffington Post .
The announcement, however, is only the latest in a series of failures related to celebrities hired to promote a brand-sometimes-but soaring amounts that end up being ridiculed on social media and thereby hurting the brand should be promoting. Sometimes the fault of the marketing campaign; other times, celebrity just ruining the brand message, inadvertently or for misbehavior.
The pace and content of social media has hindered the work of managing brand image, and have a celebrity to be your spokesperson increases the degree of risk involved, notes Patti Williams , a marketing professor at Wharton. “Traditionally, the celebrity involved in the ad and brand relationship ended there,” he says. “Now, calls to celebrities who interact with customers the company in other ways. This occurs through the media of the company or celebrity on your Twitter account or Facebook, for example. The nature of advertising backed by a celebrity is a proposed 360 degrees, and that is the cause of most of the risks. “
Take the case of Jessica Simpson, he would have received $ 4 million to be spokesperson for Weight Watchers. Your participation joke ended becoming second pregnancy due to unexpected, rumors of Simpson-respect on the Internet for several weeks until she confirmed suspicions by Twitter-, hampering plans to lose weight. “In the past, the disadvantages of these collaborations were relatively limited: it could be an ad that did not go well and that was the topic of conversation with friends,” says Williams. “Today, when something goes wrong, the situation does not end the failed ad, the rejection of the message comes to life. Backing celebrity can quickly become the subject of massive joke. Might not permanently affect the brand but can impair short-term. “
The strength of a celebrity
The celebrity endorsement is a marketing tool consecrated. The theory is that if you borrow a little glitter of celebrity, it will make people aware and interested in a certain product. Apparently, the strategy works: a 2011 study published in the Journal of Advertising analyzed the support of athletes and found some brands that generated a 4% increase in revenue (about U.S. $ 10 million per year in the aggregate sales branded products) and a 0.25% increase in dividends.
“Two schools of thought compete for choosing the right celebrity for your brand,” says Barbara Kahn , director of the Trade Jay H. Baker [ Jay H. Baker Retailing Center ] at Wharton. “One of them says to choose a celebrity to evoke positive emotions in the target market. Should be someone with great power of attraction, someone to give that talk, a nice person. The second says you should choose someone who fits with the product or understand some of it. That gives credibility. “
In a way, the rise of the Internet has increased the value of celebrity endorsements. As marketing staff wants to conquer a beautiful share the ability to increasingly shorter attention of consumers, a spokesman of weight can help the brand gain visibility. “It’s hard to win the attention of people in the midst of confusion and commotion,” says Kahn. “It was hard before, but now the situation has worsened. Celebrities, right or wrong, draw attention.”
In the segment of social media, celebrities have more prestige and influence that brands. On Twitter, for example, Justin Bieber has 34.5 million followers, and Oprah Winfrey, 16.6 million. The stars of the reality shows also have impressive numbers: Kim Kardashian has 17.3 million followers, and Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, six million. Brands, however, even the most popular and trying to convey a “modern” image generally have far fewer followers.Starbucks has 3.4 million followers on Twitter, Rolling Stones and has 2.3 million Gap, 177,000.
No wonder, therefore, that advertisers are increasingly resorting to the strength of social networks and celebrities to attract the consumer. After all, Internet users spend more time on social networks than on any other web site, as noted a report last year Nielson, media measurement company. The report showed that 20% of the time people spend on the computer desktop is dedicated to social channels, and 30% of the time spent on mobile devices is spent on social networks. About 17% of the time consumers spend on the PC it does on Facebook, which is still the mark of Internet and mobile app success in the U.S., according to a report by comScore, specializing in digital business measurements.
Celebrities are valuable to advertisers, but their fans are also important in social media sites, says another study by Nielson. The study found that 64% of U.S. adults online that follow a celebrity also follow a brand, and that the subject is a celebrity that has four times more likely to follow a brand than the average U.S. adult online. The Nielson study showed that these people also tend to give advice and opinions frequently other online consumers.
“The celebrity endorsement acts as a signal or trigger,” says Mark Bonchek, founder of Orbit + Co, company social media strategies for near Boston, Massachusetts. “People are looking for a signal. If they see a celebrity like [endorsing a product], that sends a signal that the product is good and becomes part of the conversation of consumers when they talk about a brand or product” .
Although that kind of talk from client to client it is something that companies want, it is also a risky proposition when you migrate to the digital world: what is said during a casual or around water machine office meeting is very different from what is said in a social network like Facebook, used by one in seven people on the planet. About three-quarters of social media users say they visit social networking sites to know the experiences of others with different brands, Nielson reports. Of these, about 65% require more information on products and services offered by the marks; 53% want to praise a brand and 50% want to express your concern or complain about brands and services.
“Social media allows the consumer to speak with other people, that can be positive or negative,” says David Reibstein , a marketing professor at Wharton. “If you have a good or funny ad, or a celebrity really weight the impact social media can be much higher. However, there is a disadvantage in that too. If your brand gives a false step, or is there a celebrity who is inconsistent or impairs the mark, could have major negative impact [...] ‘There is no bad publicity, “says an old adage. Actually, it is not so. Every company wants people to talk about their brand, but want to do so in a positive or neutral manner. “
24 hours a day, 7 days a week
The progress of technology and the rapid pace with which information spreads have hampered the work of enterprises, which aims to ensure that the conversation about your brand is always “positive or neutral.” A famous spokesman gives extra confidence to the brand, says Reibstein. With social media, “the potential of public opinion is greater,” he says. “Just someone kick that exposure to become part of the news cycle 24 hours a day seven days a week during a photo of a celebrity [in an unwelcome situation].”
Like all of us, celebrities also have their weaknesses and errors of judgment.Unlike us, however, these errors of judgment are shredded in detail. When she is “brand ambassador”, that behavior becomes a big problem. Michael Phelps, the most decorated Olympian in history, lost sponsorship from Kellogg after a photo of him smoking marijuana appeared in News of the World . Tiger Woods lost the sponsorship of Tag Heuer, Gillette, Accenture, Gatorade and other companies after it was discovered that he had several extramarital affairs with numerous women. More recently, Nike, Oakley and other major sponsors withdrew their sponsorship of the South African sprinter Oscar Pistorius after he was accused of shooting and killing his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp during a domestic dispute.
When celebrity in the news, “social media spend to feed the news cycle,” saysJonah Berger , Wharton marketing professor and author of Contagious: The Secret Behind Why Things Catch On . “Everyone wants to know what’s new and what’s happening. In politics, a hitch goes unnoticed. Ditto in advertising.”
Berger says that the tradition of American artists frontline Sites make announcements about what product do not advertise in the U.S. is old. In Japan, Natalie Portman made an announcement of a product for hair; George Clooney made propaganda Honda and Brad Pitt made an announcement of Softbank. When there was no sharing sites like YouTube social media, those celebrities “did not believe that such publicity would prejudice the heritage of its brand in the U.S., because no one would see at home,” notes Berger. Now, however, “anyone with an Internet connection can see it.”
Social media give celebrities “more rope with which to hang himself,” saysAmericus Reed , a marketing professor at Wharton. “It has leveled the playing field in which people disseminate information, a subject with a mobile is a potential journalist. So any story can hold and last much longer.”
But the mistakes of a celebrity who is endorsing a product is not damaged so needed the image of a product definitively says Reed, who has done research in the area of ”moral disengagement”, ie the way in which the consumer justifies supporting a brand whose reputation has been tarnished. “Your immediate reaction is to blame the company for the offense of a celebrity. However, that mistake could harm the company for some time.”
Reed and others say that companies should be well prepared for possible bad behavior of the person who will represent your brand before it’s contaminated. “You should think of it as an opportunity to anticipate the story,” says Reed. “Da’s work today deal with celebrities who are spokespersons of the company.’s Undertaking must be more attentive to what is happening, because rumors of a possible crisis often spread very fast. Many companies have” control rooms Social Media “which monitor the blogosphere and can intervene before something happens. problems can be avoided before they become viral.”
Another challenge arising from the support of a celebrity in the era of social media is the difficulty of creating a perfect marketing message. It is not easy to conceal faults, because “there is always a ‘second release,” says Erik Qualman, Professor of Digital Marketing Hult International Business School.”There are always comments on the ads [on Facebook, Twitter and other channels.] The brand seeks to understand what is being said. Currently, many companies place their ads on YouTube for the Super Bowl a few days before the game. According to the response obtained, analyzed what had the best answer. It’s a smart decision. “
If the marketing team of Chanel had analyzed the situation that way, perhaps the traditional media and social media have not had the opportunity to mock the announcement of Brad Pitt so cruelly. In the past, the company, private equity, managed to leverage non-traditional media with several “short” of her perfume Chanel No. 5 ads lush several minutes long featuring actresses like Nicole Kidman and Audrey Tautou. The fact that the ads were so well received may have been the cause of massive rejection of the ad with Brad Pitt, Williams says Wharton. “The error was raised by social media. Believe that, ironically, it was due to that Chanel had previously done an extraordinary job in Social Media Management . Their success and acceptance in social media made it more susceptible to failure.”
Confused speech Clint Eastwood at the GOP National Convention last year is another such case, she said. During the speech, Eastwood devoted much time to talk to an empty chair representing President Barack Obama. “In the past, the next day’s newspapers have commented on the fact, and experts had complained. SNL have satirized the event. But with social media, the situation became a meme that took own life, “says Williams. “In an instant, someone created a Twitter account: ‘Invisible Obama’ Social media makes this kind of thing prendan.”.