Celebrity Endorsement - When Amitabh in his baritone says, ‘Navratan tel, thanda thanda tel, do I believe him? Big B, honestly, hand on your heart, do you apply ‘Navratan’ tel? Similarly I doubt that Bipasha’s secret of raven locks is ‘Pantene’; it has more to do with her Bengali genes. Truly, who believes that Katrina applies ‘Veet’ for the satin smooth skin? Sounds faintly ridiculous!
Undoubtedly, celebrity advertising can create a yaadgaar recall value. I am aware of the Samsung tablet, thanks to KJo’s rapid fire round. And I love the way Purab snubs him as ‘Uncle’ in the ‘Nescafe’ advertisement. Beefcake in bubble bath with babes has visual appeal (?) and recall value. Does it convert into sales?
“It’s easy to sell to men, says a veteran advertising consultant. Use this product and you will score over hot women models. Or use this product and you will save time and money to spend on hot women models. For women, it’s even easier; use this product and you will be the hot model."
Yes, its oversimplification. But what’s true is that there are five basic obstacles for every sale - no need, no money, no hurry, no desire and no trust. Celebrities bring in the trust factor. Or so the advertisers think.
Youngistan ka wow is a chick magnet named Ranbir, but do girls buy colas because of him? Will people drink a particular cola because Dhoni endorses it? Even Akkis death defying, ‘Taste the thunder’ is not so effective when it comes to selling. Not for me. And after Baba Ramdev labeled colas as toilet cleaners, I somehow relate ‘Harpic’ with Colas at a subconscious level. Sorry, but the image does come to my mind. Can’t help it!
Ramdevji also suggested that aloe vera is better than any shaving cream in the market. How does he know? For all I know he sports a gleaming beard, doesn’t he? (Ek bhi grey nahin, maybe he uses L’Oreal on the beard……No offense. Just Jockeying…okay?)
But the fact that one zhatka from Munni did more than any amount of advertising could do for the balm, clearly proves that celebrity advertising works at some level.
As Munni pouts suggestively, why do men end up buying Zhandu balm for their aches? When Munni’s bottle green lehnga, as green as the balm swirls with her hands moving in circles, the colloquially stupid ‘Zhandu’ becomes a buzz word.
Some brands gel well with the star personality and the tag line. When Sachin endorses Ujjala Bright for a spotless performance, it rings a bell. Or when Juhi chirpily urges me to buy ‘Kurkure’ and ‘Catch’ chat masala, I do realize that there is a chatpata connection. Also there is some synergy when Abby baby struggles to get some idea. Get idea?
It’s easy to hook up by challenging my self-esteem factor. I have to buy L’Oreal because I am worth it. So what if it pinches my purse? Aren’t I worth it? Or, it’s just not a phone, it’s who you are! Yes, I have the power! The pride awakening works at a sub-conscious levels but I will not buy a product simply because it is ‘India ki shaan’, ‘Desh ki dadhkan’, ‘Desh ka namak’ and the works. Often word of mouth praise sells products more than celebrity advertising.
All our sanctimonious and clean as CWG toilet paper scam pollies can endorse one product – Fevicol…yeh fevicol ka mazboot jod hai asaani se nahi tootega - with the kursi that is. Grumpy and frumpy Pawar can endorse any brand of packaged French Onion Soup. Considering onions are making me cry every day, there is some synergy there. ….
Sonia can endorse pastas, Mayawati can endorse pink hand bags, and Mamta can sell Bengal cotton saris. Sure, Neera Radia can bring synergy to any telecom brand she chooses to endorse. Why should boys have all the fun?
Unfortunately the politicians do not bring in any trust value, whatsoever. Even that cute ‘Hutch’ pug (wherever you go our network follows) or the ‘Vodafone’ Zoozoos bring greater trust factor. Not even Mr. Benefit of Doubt – Dr. Singh. Sorry, after the 2G scam, even he is unfit to endorse Ujjala Bright spotless performance…kyunki daag ache nahin hai.
While Reddy and Yeddy erased the meaning of zeroes, Sachin refused the enticement of zeroes offered by a liquor brand. Reason? Ethics! Yes, the word exists.
Finally I come back to the sale obstacles. Seldom I buy even when there is no need. Desire can be created by smart advertising. No hurry? Advertisements can sweet-talk to shell out – Hurry last 2 days of sale. Prices soon to be revised soon, works.
No trust? For cynicism prevailing in a nation semi-blind with sleaze, it is not easy to sell trust.
No money? Now I have lost it. This one is insurmountable.
(Disclaimer: There is no intention to hurt sentiments here. These are personal musings. All in good fun!)