6 must-know tips before signing a celebrity ambassador

6 must-know tips before signing a celebrity ambassador
Klub's guide: Debt funding for celebrity endorsements

According to a survey conducted in 2023, up to 30% of consumers are saying "yes" to products endorsed by their favourite stars!

In the world of branding, finding the right celebrity ambassador is like casting the perfect lead in a blockbuster movie. The right celebrity can elevate your brand and create an emotional connection with your target audience. But why do you even need celebrity branding, and how do you go about choosing the ideal star to shine bright for your brand? Let's dive into this process with exclusive insights from Shivani Soni, co-founder of Beyoung, an online clothing brand, that successfully onboarded Bhuvan Bam as their celebrity ambassador. 

When to onboard a brand ambassador

Timing, as they say, is everything. Opting for a celebrity ambassador too early might be like putting the cart before the horse. Considering this move is best when your brand has a solid foundation and a clear vision, which ensures you have the resources to support the partnership and maximise its potential.

Shivani advises, “It is really necessary that whenever we choose a celebrity, our vision should be clear. We should know what we want to convey to the audience. When other brands were focused on influencer marketing and the market was saturated, we chose a brand face which resonates with our brand. We decided to dive into celebrity endorsement and chose Bhuvan Bam as the celebrity brand face. His association was the catalyst for our next phase of growth, significantly boosting our brand's credibility and trust among our audience in Real Bharat.”

  1. Behind the scenes of onboarding a celebrity

Bringing a celebrity onboard is no walk in the park - it requires meticulous planning, brainstorming, and a deep understanding of both the brand and the celebrity's persona. Shivani elaborates, "We started by noting that Bhuvan Bam's audience, primarily 18 to 34 year-olds from Tier 2, 3 and 4 cities, aligns perfectly with Beyoung's target demographic. These individuals are predominantly active on platforms like YouTube, matching our core values and audience focus. Even while considering various celebrities, including actors, comedians, and artists, Bhuvan’s relatable story and down-to-earth appeal directly connect with Beyoung’s target customers, which fosters an emotional bond. His story, rising from humble beginnings without a celebrity background, mirrored the journey of our brand. Hence, we chose to onboard him as our celebrity ambassador and finally approached him with a well-crafted pitch that highlighted the synergy between Beyoung and his personal brand."

Shivam Soni, the founder and CEO of Beyoung, expressed “This partnership is all about mixing creativity, style, and relatability to inspire young folks, set fashion trends and make fashion accessible to everyone."

In essence, here is a checklist to keep in mind when narrowing down on a celebrity ambassador to be the face of your brand:

One must also consider the long-term potential of the partnership (if relevant) and have a contingent plan in place in case of a crisis.

  1. Engaging celebrities: Is it like pitching to an investor?

Engaging a celebrity ambassador is a blend of pitching to an investor and crafting a compelling story. You need to showcase your brand's potential while also highlighting the mutual benefits of the partnership. "When we approached Bhuvan, it wasn’t just about numbers and reach," says Shivani. "We focused on storytelling, showing him how Beyoung and his brand could grow together. It's crucial to speak their language, understand their values and ensure they align with yours."

  1. The importance of legal advice

Navigating the legal landscape is crucial when onboarding a celebrity. Just as a sailor wouldn’t set sail without a map, brands should not proceed without sound legal advice. Contracts need to be meticulously drafted to cover aspects like duration, scope of work, exclusivity, and contingencies. Discerning the boundaries of promotional activities and aligning them with both legal requirements and the celebrity's branding preferences is paramount. Some legal aspects to consider would be 

  • Clear Contracts: Ensure comprehensive contracts outlining partnership terms, compensation, and termination clauses. Also  prioritise understanding the rights to advertise and the permissible digital and offline platforms for the collaboration
  • Intellectual Property: Secure rights for using the celebrity's name, image, etc. in marketing materials.
  • Endorsement Disclosures: Comply with advertising regulations for transparent endorsement disclosures to avoid legal issues.

A legal body with expertise in relevant fields could help navigate the process smoothly.

  1.  Designing effective campaigns and setting goals

Once the partnership is sealed, the next step is designing impactful campaigns. The rule of thumb here is to start off by setting clear goals for high-profile collaborations. For example, a brand might aim to boost sales by 30%, or increase social media engagement by 40%, with an investment of INR 3 crore in celebrity endorsements. To achieve this, here’s how you can get started:

  • Set clear objectives: Define what success looks like for your campaign. Is it boosting brand awareness or driving traffic to your website?
  • Analyse your strengths: Look at where your traction comes from. Is it your website, paid ads, or social media? Understand where most cart additions are happening.
  • Direct traffic effectively: Use this analysis to direct traffic to these key sources through the celebrity’s influence.

"We crafted campaigns that were authentic to Bhuvan’s style and Beyoung’s identity," Shivani explains. "Our end goal was primarily to enhance brand awareness rather than immediate ROI. We launched the BB x Beyoung campaign in both Hindi and English to resonate with our diverse real Bharat audience. The actual results were impressive too—our organic searches increased significantly, and our brand's credibility soared. When you give a face to the brand, people feel a sense of trust and assurance when making a purchase."

  1. The benefits of celebrity branding 

It’s no secret that celebrities have a magnetic appeal that can attract attention, build trust, and create a buzz. Their endorsement acts as a stamp of approval, often translating into increased brand awareness and loyalty. Just as Shivani mentions, “Bhuvan Bam brought not just his popularity but his authentic connection with the youth, which aligns perfectly with Beyoung's vision and helped us connect with the real Bharat.”  The benefits of a brand partnership are not one-sided. For celebrities, aligning with the right brand can enhance their personal brand and provide opportunities to engage with their audience in new and meaningful ways. 

Teaming up with Beyoung, Bhuvan remarked, "Collaborating with the entire team was a joy, and it was a fantastic experience to work together. I'm extremely pleased with what we've achieved collectively. The brand's dedication to innovation is evident in their approach to fashion, and their range of styles is essential for everyday fashion."Beyoung used every opportunity to connect with their audience—whether it was through their website, social media, product shoots, or even Bhuvan's own handles. They made sure the message got through loud and clear!

Beyoung maximised this partnership by implementing a variety of contests, giveaways, and other socially engaging formats

All in all, choosing a celebrity ambassador is a strategic move that requires careful planning, a deep understanding of your brand, debt funding for startups and a clear vision of the desired outcomes. By following these steps and learning from the experiences of brands like Beyoung, you can navigate this journey effectively. Remember, the right celebrity can not only enhance your brand’s image but also steer it towards new horizons of success. So, set sail with confidence, and let your brand shine brightly in the market!

Ready to elevate your brand with the perfect celebrity partnership? Klub provides comprehensive assistance through its holistic growth empowerment platform, offering end-to-end support for onboarding new celebrities. Connect with us for comprehensive debt funding solutions to meet your brand’s needs and explore the possibilities further.

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