I happened to be on SABC1's daytime talkshow Shift today. I shared the panel with some industry folks and the experience turned into a learning one for me. I love learning and transparency hence I always try to share information.
During the conversation on the show, with the hosts Aaron and Kamo, I argued that celebrities may attract endorsements from brands but researches have shown that local celebrities have little to no influence on sales of products.
Adding to that, Ndumiso Mngomezulu, marketing strategist at DNA Brand Architects, schooled me on a little point I have been missing in this whole issue for years. Turns out brand do not only approach celebrities for campaign to influence sales. Sometimes the client is looking for brand awareness.
To break down, I understood him to mean this; say a beverage brand needs to make the public aware of their new product, they would reach out to a celebrity to get that message out there because said celebrity may have a lot of followers on social media and traditional media attention.
What would happen after that exposure driven by the celebrity's multi platform reach, is that the marketing team will have strategies that will target sales in conjunction with the celebrity campaign. Basically, [sometimes] brands are not always hiring celebs expecting that they would make products fly off the shelves.
Well, I have been educated. I am not a marketing specialist so I have been looking at this celebrity endorsement thing from just one perspective of sales and it never made sense to me.
This is why I am a huge proponent of open dialogue in the entertainment industry. We can learn a lot from each other. An informed people make smart choices. If we opened the industry enough that we can have honest and open discussions about the industry, we would completely improve this industry.
Thank you to Shift for inviting me to be part of the show and thank you to Ndumiso for the info.
YOU LEARN SOMETHING NEW EVERYDAY!!!