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Studies show celebrity endorsers do not create beauty brand loyalty

By Lucy Whitehouse + , 04-Jul-2014
Last updated the 07-Jul-2014 at 09:28 GMT

Celebrity endorsement is no longer a sign of a trustworthy brand for consumers, according to researched collated by beauty retail giant Feel Unique. 

The company commissioned an infographic which compiled various recent studies and surveys on the topic to give an overview of the consumer response to celebrity brand endorsement when it comes to cosmetics.

It highlighted such telling statistics as the fact that 44% of consumers decide to buy a product when endorsed by a family, friend or colleague, as opposed to just 5% who respond to celebrity endorsers.

Celebrity downturn

Engagement in celebrity endorsement has not always been so low though – in 2001 a Deam & Biswas study found that celebs plugging products resulted in both more favourable advertisement ratings, and more positive product ratings.

Yet One Poll’s study a decade later found that adverts which feature celebrities are failing at securing a positive response from consumers, in the report which was published last year.  

The market research company found that 37% of beauty consumers would be willing to pay more than usual for a beauty product if it’s endorsed by someone they know personally; only 3% would make that leap for a celebrity endorser.

The right celebrity, used in the right way, can undoubtedly be a powerful brand asset. But using a celebrity is no guarantee of effective advertising; overall, there’s very little difference between the performance of ads with celebrities versus those without,” according to Millward Brown analysts.

Personal beauty sharing

Talking to CosmesticsDesign-Europe.com, partner in venture capital firm Maveron and industry expert Jason Stoffer noted that consumers nowadays are demanding a sense of participation and accessibility with brands, rejecting the distance which is created via celebrity endorsers.

"Yesterday's brands defined themselves internally. Today building a beloved brand requires fostering a two way conversation with a passionate base of core customers,” he said.

L’Oreal is one brand who has already made decisive steps to respond to this shift in climate, removing celebrity endorsers completely in its recent ‘manifesto’ relaunch.

The brand’s identity overhaul saw ‘Beauty for All’ become its new logo, launched in a video campaign which featured ‘ordinary consumers’ rather than celebrities or models, a gimmick which Unilever’s Dove brand has long been plugging to strong success.

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