Thursday, August 9, 2012

Celebrity, Celebrity Endorser, Brand: What's The Difference?

Allen Adamson, managing director of the New York office of Landor Associates, has written a useful article for students of brand: "What Justin Bieber Can Teach Michael Phelps, Gabby Douglas and Other Superstar Athletes about Being a Super Brand." To summarize the somewhat complex language:

  • A celebrity is someone who has achieved fame.
  • A celebrity endorser either has credibility in endorsing the brand or there is some sort of "credible rationale" for the pair-up (for example, in terms of the image of the celebrity and the image the brand seeks to portray)
  • A celebrity brand is someone whose image goes beyond a single point of expertise or distinction to multiple categories.
In matching celebrity to brand Adamson offers a few tips but the most important concept is focus - ensuring that the positioning of the celebrity and the brand (or the celebrity as brand) is careful, specific, and unique.