Celebrity Endorsements: Is this a big deal?


I am sure you know by now that Sachin rejected a huge ad-deal (supposedly the biggest yet!) with an alcohol manufacturer. While it’s a great gesture to me it sparks the debate of whether it’s ethical for celebrities to endorse such products.

Before coming on that, let’s try and understand why celebrities endorse ads at the first place. The answer is a no brainer MONEY!!! Well ok, at times you do see them for social causes like Polio campaigns but more or less its money. Brands benefit from celebrities in their ads and sell more, that’s the argument at least. These brand managers think that celebrities have great influence on the society and hence this impact. Hence, the argument that celebrities endorsing alcohol and tobacco, negatively impact society.

I do not buy this argument. Why?

First, I don’t think our society is that stupid that they will blindly follow the celebrity (there is some impact but no blind following) and second smoking / drinking usually are least likely to be started because of a celebrity. Also, usually performance of sportsmen is also associated with the impact so if Sachin doesn’t do too well in South Africa people would not stop drinking / smoking (assuming he did the campaign). So if Sachin rejects the ad-campaign, it’s a big deal because of Sachin and not because of the cause.


Moreover, the same celebrities also campaign for other products which are false claims. For example, Boost is a secret of nobody’s energy and drinking Cola isn’t cool! I am sure more people drink Boost and Colas because of celebrity endorsements than they do smoking or drinking. The point is the impact on society cannot be measured easily and even if it could there are 1000 different brands which impact negatively but there is no publicity around it.

Should celebrities do ad-endorsements or not? I don’t know but we should neither be too excited about their selection nor should we judge them because of their endorsements. Smoking and Alcohol are issues in the society which should be dealt with responsibility and not by celebrities.

Obviously, we are too passionate about Sachin, so I expect some push-backs here.

  1. Manish G. says

    well, it is true that in today’s environment. consumers are more wise and alert. but celebrity endorsennt help to drive the purchasing decision towards positive end. it may result in actual purchase or may not. but co.s don’t want to loose the single oppotunity to increase theire sale.and hence they are using celebrity to recall theire brand and pramote theire products…

  2. Vishwas says

    Ha…..we all know in India……….you can talk about three things to any citizen -Movies, cricket and politics. Even we all urban people need some information for any product or service before we go for that. Of course celebrity gives that adv a face value and make them different from others adv. You purchase it or not but a villager will definitely go for smallest AC of the world or helicopter shot.

  3. jagannath gupt says

    To some extent i believe that celebrity endorsement is beneficial for the company to which they are endorse but i always think about the companies or brands which do not have celebrities to associate with them??????????????
    Why is it that people believe in the success of others rather than believing what suits them?????
    What i say to my self for the above posed questions by me is “it is always good to make our own way rather than following the already created path”.

  4. Ashfaq says

    I have a few friends who usually purchases branded clothes, perfumes endorsed by dhoni. I don’t follow them. Everybody have different tasted isn’t it.

  5. Jagannath A says

    there is something called as subliminal marketing

    1. Ravi says

      If I understand correctly you are referring to the stimuli aspect of the consumer behaviour side.

      While its true I would like to argue that nobody is smoking/drinking coz celebs endorse it

  6. Nilay says

    But I see that society not blindly but do follow the product endorsed by celebrity….whenever sachin, sehwag, hrithik, shahrukh give a big hit they become a talk of town which lead to SALE of a product…if not then why even low cost manufacturing Mobile handset company would endorse a big celebrity to promote their product and they even have higher sales…. so I see its because of liking, preference towards a particular celebrity which lead to product preference

  7. Charu says

    Actually in last few years it seems like rat race has started amongst the celebrities for endorsements & i do not understand why the companies are hell bent on signing them (even for toothpaste, oil what not?), i personally feel celebrities cannot influence the credibility of the product whatsoever. i might be induced to try it once but if its bad….ofcourse i will never use it.

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