Celebrity Marketing as a Form of Entertainment


Creating entertainment through advertisements increases consumers ability to connect with brands.

Brands strive for consumer attention. Simultaneously, consumers want to be entertained.

Consumers are blasted with advertisements day after day. In an effort to escape from a workaholic lifestyle, consumers embrace entertainment as an enjoyable distraction. As attention spans grow shorter and ad-blocking efforts grow stronger, brands have to find a way to push through the clutter and become memorable.

In order to do so, companies have to move from simply adding brand value to adding entertainment value. Not only should companies sponsor the brand content, but these brands need to be the entertainment.

This “don’t sell, entertain” mindset has gained momentum, especially as musical artists, television stars and athletes have joined the movement. Celebrity marketing content that is entertaining erases the idea that advertisements are purely promotional.

Below are a few brands who have successfully used celebrity marketing to execute this approach:

North Face

With the help of Spotify, North Face partnered with White Denim to take advertisements to a whole new level.

In an effort to promote North Face’s Apex Flex GTX rain jacket, Spotify released the first weather-triggered song. White Denim’s song, “No Nee Ta Slode Aln” was made available by Spotify only in U.S. regions receiving rainfall. Using ClimaTune, Spotify determined which markets to release the song.

In addition, “No Nee Ta Slode Aln” can be heard throughout the marketing campaign for North Face’s new rain jacket.

Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut partnered with Kristin Wiig for its “Everyman” campaign with a goal to showcase how hot and fresh pizza can be loved by all.

Wiig is featured in two TV advertisements playing a variety of characters, such as an older farmer, male cheerleader, business woman, and mechanic. Chief brand and concept officer of Pizza Hut, Jeff Fox, was quoted in AdWeek saying, “Wiig was a great fit for the role because of her versatility and her ability to play so many different characters – as shown seen in her time on Saturday Night Live.”

Channeling these various personas, Wiig uses her celebrity status to entertain viewers and also promote Pizza Hut as a brand for everyone.


For its “Battle of the Paddle” digital banking campaign, Chase partnered with not just one celebrity athlete, but two. NBA player Stephen Curry and professional tennis player Serena Williams go head-to-head in an impressive battle of ping pong to promote the convenience of Chase Quickpay.

Yet, before the commercial even launched, Chase created teaser content on various social media channels to encourage viewer interaction. The company gave viewers the choice of #TeamStephen or #TeamSerena to build hype and create social buzz.

The teaser content alone amassed three million video views across Instagram and Facebook.

Altogether, these three examples illustrate the power of celebrity marketing as a form of entertainment. Interrupting consumers with branded messages no longer works. Brands have to create entertainment and decide which celebrity can best enhance their message if they are going to connect with consumers.

photo credit: Al Ibrahim via Flickr



10 Ways to Use Celebrity Marketing to Help Grow Your Brand

ten tips for celebrity marketing

The most successful celebrity campaigns I’ve worked on have been driven by brand executives seeing an opportunity and acting on it.

Using a celebrity can be a powerful way to take advantage of new opportunities during the marketing cycle and provide a strategic advantage over competitive brands.

If you don’t have much experience in celebrity marketing, it may be helpful to know the variety of ways other brands have used them.

This is my top ten list of ways you can use a celebrity’s help:

  1. Break through the clutter. Using a celebrity marketer opens the door for your key messages to be “pulled” in over thousands of others bombarding consumers.
  2. Build brand awareness. Using a celebrity can shorten the time needed for consumers to become familiar with a new brand. It might take a brand five years to get to where a celebrity endorsement could take it in only one year.
  3. New brand introduction. A celebrity partner will be an assest anywhere and everywhere they go, which means that your brand will be represented as well at all of the exclusive events such as award ceremonies, the red carpet, sporting events and more.
  4. Marketing campaign. Partnering with a celebrity can be a great asset to take your marketing campaign to a whole new level. They can lend instant credibility to a campaign and also provide additional value by leveraging their established fan bases.
  5. New product launch. A celebrity’s endorsement of your product can greatly impact sales. It definitely increases consumer awareness of your brand and provides a differentiation among similar products.
  6. Build credibility. When consumers believe a celebrity uses a product or service, a powerful third-party endorsement creates confidence and respect that is not normally available, providing a strong reason to purchase.
  7. PR events. A cost effective way to deliver key message points. The media love to interact with celebrities because they are just like us. This is a cost effective way to deliver your key points.
  8. Branded content. Branded content is a way for advertisers to let their messages come across in a “not so commercial” way. Using one or more “hot” stars will draw people to content in large numbers quickly.
  9. Creating an emotional connection. There is such a great desire to identify with a celebrity, to drink the same drink, wear the same clothes, drive the same cars, etc. Fans want to be like them and do what they do. There is a strong emotional connection with that celebrity that can be attached to a brand.
  10. Implementing a new brand strategy. According to a new media study, 95% of social-media users believe a company should have a presence in social media. A celebrity fueled social media strategy can greatly amplify your brand’s online presence to reach consumers faster than traditional approaches.

photo credit: Defence Images via photopin cc