YAB Member Reports: Selling Millennials on Celebrity Endorsement

Millennials have grown up as paparazzi culture has reached a fevered pitch. They are well used to tabloids and blogs touting celebrities as being "just like us!" while simultaneously looking for scandals and failings to broadcast to fans. For this generation, there is no mystery to their "idols," and as a result actually idolizing celebrities is a dying sentiment. Their unique experience with celebrity culture brings into question the effectiveness of traditional celebrity endorsement. How believable is a seal of approval from a celebrity when Millennials know more about their personalities and preferences than ever before? Add to this the fact that Millennials might just be the most media savvy generation to date, with full awareness of the machinery at work behind brands and their efforts to lure in consumers. They are a more critical audience, and to reach them, finding the right pairing of brand and celebrity is imperative. Today Youth Advisory Board member Maddie Flager is giving her first-hand Millennial perspective on when celebrity endorsement works and when it falls flat.

 

Selling Millennials on Celebrity Endorsement

There is a fine line between a well-placed celebrity endorsement and one that simply fails to connect. Here are two of the biggest factors Millennials use to judge celebrity-endorsement marketing.

1) Do the Celeb and Brand Personalities Match?

Perhaps the biggest factor in producing a successful celebrity ad campaign is choosing the right person: how well do the icon and the product fit together? Personally, I often find that the less an ad is outright about buying the product and instead features an idea, feeling or attitude that the product evokes the more I will pay attention to it.

Feels Right: Pepsi has matched celebrity with brand perfectly…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “I think when I'm a parent my top concern in raising a child will be, in general, just not screwing them up." –Female, 14, MA

It is becoming common practice for busy Millennials to skip breakfast, but that doesn’t mean they don’t like breakfast food. In fact, this generation is more likely than others to eat breakfast at times other than traditional morning hours, and 16% are pushing back their mealtime to use breakfast as an afternoon snack. Their adventurous food preferences are influencing the “premiumization” of breakfast items, but since we know that the majority of Millennials enjoy cooking, there is also opportunity in "speed-scratch" products for the 65% who prefer to make breakfast foods from scratch. (MediaPost)

In the past three years, Lego has seen its consumer base change from 90% boys to 40% girls, thanks in part to its Lego Friends collection of girl-targeted construction sets. Activity kits like Rainbow Loom and GoldieBlox, along with licensed Frozenmerchandise, have helped drive the surge in sales for girls toy divisions, whereas action figure movies have begun to cannibalize each other in the boys toy aisle. (Kidscreen)

In the Age of Not Believing, images online and in magazines are almost assumed to be manipulated, but one Millennial is speaking out in support of imperfection. The fashion blogger behind the site Do The Hot Pants posted a reveal of images before and after Photoshop, admitting that she posted edited images to her site that decreased the size of her stomach, legs, and smoothed her skin. While she lifted the veil on her use of Photoshop and is advocating for better body image perceptions, her transparency might make some even more skeptical of what they see on user-created blogs. (BuzzFeed)

The #IceBucketChallenge for ALS is still going strong with participation from celebrities continuing to snowball, but no one’s nomination has seen as much viral traction as Bill Gates’ video. The tech genius decided to step it up a notch with a specially designed ice bucket contraption, and his behind-the-scenes take has seen over 8 million views in the past four days. (YouTube)

The social media landscape has seen a number of standalone apps fail, often due to resistance from users to migrate themselves and all of their friends to another platform. Instead of creating another Snapchat look-a-like, new app Camoji is using iMessage to send GIF selfies. The short video selfies send and loop seamlessly within iMessage, elevating the selfie into animated expressions that can also be shared as a URL link to non-iPhone users. (Mashable)

Quote of the Day: "I haven’t had children yet because I have a lot to accomplish—academics, career goals, travel destinations—before I settle down and look to someone else's interests.” –Female, 25, PA

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