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Which one to Choose: Celebrity Endorsement or Influencer Marketing?

Authored by Gautam Madhavan, Founder and CEO at Mad Influence.

Marketing environment is evolving day by day and it would not be wrong to say that marketing and that also, social media marketing to be more particular is growing at lightning-fast speed with each day bringing newer concepts, ideas and platforms or mediums to market one’s business.

Gone are the days when a brand’s reputation was built by a celebrity endorsement, influencer marketing has taken over with the advent of social media marketing and advertising. Celebrity endorsements and influencer marketing have many advantages in their own ways so one cannot make a choice between the two being a marketer as it also depends on the type of campaign that one is leading.

Popular is Always Influential. Really!

What if instead of a celebrity promoting a hair color, a hair colorist speaks about it on his Instagram post. Yes, once the post is up, it begins hitting sales across the globe because of the millions of followers. This makes more sense for the person who is the direct influencer of the product and uses that very product in his day-to-day life.

The advantage being the most important factor of cost effectiveness and at the same time even more exposure. So one ends up saving a lot of money that the celebrities usually demand thus making a good profit from both the fronts.

Online specialists are masters of their work who very well understand a company’s vision and objective and hence work so accordingly to foster genuine relationships with the customers. 

What once had been the definition of a celebrity is now changing with the upcoming social media and the massive fan following. An individual can become a celebrity with millions of people across the globe as his followers. Isn’t it interesting? And so is the case in building brands with the influence of social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and the emerging ones like TikTok, etc. on everybody all over the world.

The key to becoming an influencing sensation is the content. The more engaging one’s content is the faster is the influencer’s growth in terms of fans and followers. So before stepping in as an influencer one should first be a creative thinker  and the rest follows the course.   

Brands always look forward to more engaging and captivating techniques for putting forth their offerings to the customers. And when celebrities from their domains come to endorse the products, definitely a personality with millions of followers would be able to create a deeper impact. But it’s no more the case now. The market is full of influencers who have the tactics and skills to capture the consumers to their offerings. They are expert Facebook, Snapchat influencers or others like Instagram models, etc. who know pretty well the ticks and tricks to profit maximization.      

Celebrities and Endorsements

No doubt that the fan following of the celebrities have more followers but one cannot deny the fact that the people are also getting aware. They can very well make out that what the celebrity is promoting doesn’t necessarily mean that they also use that product but they are doing so just because they are being paid for it and so it’s merely a medium income for them. And hence the question arises, why should one go for buying the particular product when he knows that it’s merely an advertisement. 

But no matter what, the brands continue to spend on celebrity endorsement given the fact that they may be more appealing to the viewers, but it’s not actually the right decision always. Sometimes it backfires too.  

Pros and Cons of Celebrity Endorsements

The celebrity endorsement is a time-tested and effective marketing strategy. The influential power of celebrities, their physical beauty, communicating and persuading skills is an effective method to propel one’s brand to success. Millions of people are following them blindly as they have a global appeal. It won’t be wrong if one calls them global marketing agents for a brand. Influencer marketing is a way for celebrities to endorse on digital mediums as well as they are no less than influencers to many and this adds up to their versatility.

As the saying goes that every coin has two sides so is with the celebrity endorsement. Celebrities are too expensive therefore not every brand can afford them and adding on to the costs there are the payments to the agents, styling team, etc. Also, one needs to be decisive enough to choose the appropriate celebrity so that any issues related to them may not become a trouble to the brand’s success.

Influencer Marketing

The market is flooded with two types of influencers, one the macro and others the micro influencers.

Which one to choose between macro and micro influencers?

The answer depends on one’s marketing needs. Macro influencers are celebrity driven, so if one wants to get more reach but doesn’t actually need any sort of engagement through mediums like Instagram then the best ones are the macro influencers who come up with celebrity tags and hefty price tags.

And if you really want the audience to engage with your message and take a positive action towards it then micro influencers are the best way forward.  

Pros and Cons of Influencer Marketing

Influencer Marketing is a great way of targeting a particular audience of different categories like fashion, travel, lifestyle, etc. with so many experts on Instagram who are outstanding in their areas. 

Influencers are not just online people, they are creative identities as well who know what the buyers actually want to see or hear. Their work is highly personalized and cohesive.

Since marketing through influencers is an emerging industry so it comes along with a lot of promises. The working is at times experimental but the result noted by marketers is tremendous, one can very well look forward to going with this fashion of marketing which is cheap if one wants to make it affordable and also even costlier if one wants to collaborate it with celebrity endorsements and end up with a pretty expensive budget. All that is important is to find the best influencer which suits your message delivery medium.

So, finally which one to choose between the two?

The answer remains yet to be decided by the company itself.

If you have larger marketing goals, you want a larger viewership and a nice budget, then celebrity marketing can be a good option for you. But if yours is a moderate budget with a cross-platform approach to social-media marketing then going forth with influencer marketing would be beneficial. 

But as is widely said and believed that Change is a rule to life so is practically valid here as well. The boundary between the traditional marketing ways through celebrity endorsements and now the modern media influencers is blurring at a fast pace. The two are merging as a unified tactics to enhance the success and growth rates. Consumers are spending quite a lot of time on social media and the fact that brands appeal the most to buyers through endorsing celebrities so why can’t get them both together at one place? Because the ultimate goal is customer engagement and at the same time persuasion that the customer goes and buys the stuff hence the unified bond of the two serves the desired purpose. 


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