Why Marketing Needs Celebrities
Celebrity worship may be alive and well. Mostly because certain traits make them more (or less) human. And when you’re human, you’re relatable. And people like to relate to businesses who can humanize their marketing.
But…why? It all comes down to:
Storytelling through narratives.
“Narratives are the stories that infuse our life with meaning.”
– John Mackey, Conscious Capitalism
Ok, I geeked out when I met Elizabeth Moss at a marketing conference.* She plays Peggy Olson on Mad Men.
She complimented my dress. And I didn’t really have anything to say back other than…thank you. Then we took the posed shot above. And then I told her that I’m a big fan (I know, how original).
This play-by-play is a whole lot less awkward than it sounds. Or maybe it really is as awkward as it sounds. I don’t know, and I don’t care (ok, maybe a little). It’s now a part of my narrative. And narratives infuse our lives with meaning.
How so? I can tell this story. And share a totally awesome 6-second video on Vine about the experience. This has to make my life meaningful in some way, right? Right?
It was more the human element of this interaction that made an impact. It was the sheer uncomfortableness of the situation. It was the unspoken knowledge that…she, an actress who plays a character in the advertising industry on TV makes an impact – just by being real today. She didn’t care that each shot was posed, or that there was a long line to meet her. She was gracious, real, and human. And she seemed genuinely happy to meet the other fellow humans in the room.
How do narratives relate to your business?
Not every brand can afford the Elizabeth Moss’s of the world. But this is exactly the reason why having access to the smaller, but more highly targeted micro-celebrities can often make an impact for your brand.
Your customers may not look like celebrities. And they may not act like celebrities. But they are, in fact, celebrities within their own communities. Who your customers interact with, and how they form the narrative about your business, is what makes the impact.
You no longer have to depend on third parties to do this. Sure, Apple and Oprah generate insane loyalty. But the celebrity gatekeepers are not as powerful as they once were. Brands can now create buzz by combining digital technology and personal experiences to connect. This forges insane amounts of loyalty.
And when you create meaningful media through the use of narratives, your business can create opportunities that lead to more impact.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a celebrity. And it doesn’t matter if your business can’t afford a celebrity spokesperson. What really matters is if your business can use creativity and emotions to connect. What matters is if your business can use technology to tell your narrative…and if your business can use real humans to tell your story across all major media platforms. How’s that for being real?
Do celebrities or mini-celebrities make an impact on your business? Please comment below.
Photo credit: pinksherbert (Creative Commons)