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BizReport : Advertising : August 29, 2017


5 Tips for Working with a Celebrity Spokesperson

Working with a celebrity is a dream for many small businesses, but rather than accepting just anyone, businesses need to understand what a celebrity can - and cannot - do for them. Here are 5 tips to help businesses work with a celebrity spokesperson.

by Kristina Knight

1) If you have the opportunity, don't be afraid to ask a celebrity to work with you.

"My company, JamBios, has had the good fortune of working with Henry Ian Cusick, star of ABC TV's LOST and The 100," said Beth N. Carvin, CEO, Jambios. "I met [him] through a real estate transaction. When I suggested to my co-founder that we invite Cusick to work with us at JamBios, my co-founder Bruce thought I was crazy. "He'll never agree to that!" But I persisted. You don't get anywhere if you don't dream big, believe in yourself and act upon those dreams. I knew that it could be a win-win opportunity. When we broached the idea with Cusick and his wife Annie Cusick Wood, they were intrigued and quickly became as excited as we were."

2) Make sure your celebrity loves your product.

"One of the reasons that Henry Ian Cusick joined JamBios was because he had a keen connection with the product. JamBios is a place to write and share the memories of your life, together with friends and family. JamBios is all about remembering and reminiscing. When we met to discuss JamBios, I gave my typical 2-3 minute elevator pitch about JamBios. Cusick smiled and asked, "Do you know what the movie I just filmed was about?" It turned out that he just completed filming on a movie called "Rememory" (currently available for free on GooglePlay). The movie is about an inventor who creates a machine that captures all of your memories. It was a serendipitous moment and bonded us on the common interest of saving memories," said Carvin.


3) Be protective and respectful of your celebrity's image.

"When you have a celebrity spokesperson you are likely to take a lot of photos and videos. It's tempting to put as many of them as you can on social media. Fans love it and it's an easy way to get page views and likes," said Carvin. "But remember that your celebrity has to protect his or her image. It's one of the most valuable things he or she has. Those behind the scene photos might look great to you but remember that your celebrity needs to look picture perfect at all times. Make sure your celebrity signs off on every photo that you choose to use. Always select the photos that presents him or her in the best possible light. Make sure that you and your team keep confidential everything that is said during idle conversation."

4) Find ways for your celebrity's fame to rub off onto your company or product.

"JamBios has an online "digital biographer" character that we call Monty. Monty asks questions and is designed to help our users remember stories from their life. We designed Monty before we started working with Henry Ian Cusick. We gave Monty a personality of an old bumbling British biographer that spends a lot of time in the archive basement but secretly longs to be James Bond. Once we started working with Cusick, we started to blur the lines between Cusick and Monty. Cusick became the voice of Monty and we've created a back story where Monty thinks he's Cusick. Because of all the interplay between the two, Cusick's fans have fallen in love with Monty," said Carvin.

5) Make sure your celebrity is a good person.

"We have been lucky that in addition to being famous, talented and handsome, Henry Ian Cusick is also a wonderful person. When we first started working with him we were tentative about asking him to help with additional projects and activities," said Carvin. "After a couple of months he took me aside and said, "Whatever you'd like me to do just tell me, I'm glad to do anything that will help." He meant that seriously and has proven himself by going above and beyond all expectations. He works hard, he does whatever it takes to make sure his performance is top notch and he is fun to work with."

Tags: advertising, advertising tips, celebrity endorsement, celebrity endorsement tips, Jambios










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