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Wanted Dead or Alive: Famous Faces On Your Ads

By Clarissa Arispe - February 6, 2014

Celebrities are no strangers to marketing campaigns and advertisements; Got Milk? CoverGirl, Pepsi, and Proactiv are all campaigns that found immense success after splashing famous faces across their print ads. But what happens when you begin to use deceased celebrities as your spokesperson?

“It’s nice to put a face to a name.”

Using a well-known face to promote a product is no spring chicken. Companies around the world utilize this effective method to achieve the following goals:

Establish product reliability

proactivadfeaturingsingeravrillavigne
Singer-songwriter, Avril Lavigne is one of Proactiv’s celebrity endorsers

The popular 3-step acne system, Proactiv, thrived after airing commercials featuring the popular Justin Bieber, Adam Levine, and Katy Perry. The brand’s target audience consists of any individual suffering from acne however, showcasing these fresh, superstar faces attracts the Millennial generation which is largely made up of influential minds who are constantly searching for the “next best thing”.

People now begin to associate the product with the celebrity and, if the company is lucky, they will adopt the “they use it, so it must work” mentality thus, becoming new consumers.

Build a strong consumer base
Gathering a devoted following of interested buyers who are avid fans of said celebrities is the short term goal for businesses. Once their ideal market has been reeled in, it is now in the company’s hands to deliver quality products that will transform their customers into promoters. This strong consumer base will undoubtedly advertise their favorite product and when introducing it to others, are assisted by the famous face splashed across the packaging and testimonial pages to persuade new buyers.

Remind other brands who’s their daddy
Perhaps a nicer way to say this is that if a prosperous firm can afford such ad costs, expect their marketing collateral to be an accurate demonstration of their wealth.  It’s very unlikely that a startup business will utilize such a costly method, which then leaves this tactic in the hands of corporations such as Nike, Ford, and Revlon (just to name a few).  These are the leading names in their respected areas of commerce so expect every professional move to shudder their competitors and arouse their consumers.

The “deleb” invasion

Deceased celebrities, or delebs for short, are soaring their way around ads this year which have made for creative, eye-catching campaigns. Mazda has rolled out a fun commercial for their 2014 Mazda3 featuring martial arts master, Bruce Lee. sexyhairadfeaturingmarilynmonroe

The automotive giant has incorporated Lee’s most inspiring characteristics such as his small frame, speed, and strength to effectively reflect similar benefits of the Mazda3.

Cosmetic giant, Sexy Hair has taken a similar approach to their commercials and print ads this year by employing iconic beauty, Marilyn Monroe. The publications are simple; black background, Monroe in the foreground sporting sultry red lips, a hinted product placement in the lower corners, a bold red Monroe quote, finished with her flirty signature. Every element compliments the other perfectly, creating an elegant, sensual advertisement for the sexy Marilyn in every woman.

Why delebs?
As if there weren’t plenty of celebrities to choose from. In some cases, oldies are goodies:

We’re not all crazy for Miley
Many celebrities today carry the “I’m a complete badass and I don’t care what people think of me” attitude which is cool and all but let’s face it… they’re sloppy about it. Who wants a slob representing their name? They want the rebel, the expressionist, the original badass, the one that young stars today admire.

Simplicity always wins
Paying for licensing rights is half the battle. These idols call for minimal ads; their image and a quote, their and a signature, their image and the product. Marketers are letting these delebs superstar status do all the talking which, so far, has yielded positive responses.

What do you think about this marketing method?

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