The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
Email This Page
Consumers ‘junk’ celebs plugging products

London, July 20: Hiring stars such as David Beckham, Kate Moss and Charlotte Church to promote the latest range of trainers, jewellery or underpants could be a waste of money, according to research.

A study has found that celebrity endorsement, the favoured marketing tool of the past few years, makes little difference to consumers’ attitudes.

When asked about what influenced their shopping habits, most people said they were far more likely to be swayed by the views of friends, family and watchdogs, and by what it said on the packet. The endorsement of sports stars, singers and models came near the bottom of the list.

Advertising agencies are increasingly relying on A-list movie stars and D-list Big Brother personalities to sell goods and services. Earlier this year, a survey by the agency WPP found that one in four adverts featured a celebrity endorsement, compared to one in eight a decade ago.

David Beckham, the former England captain, has been one of the most sought-after celebrities in recent years. He has endorsed products by Gillette, Pepsi, Vodafone and Adidas, among others.

However, the What Assures Consumers' report, published by the Accountability think tank and the National Consumer Council, found that the backing of famous names had little influence on consumers.

According to the poll of 2,000 people, product packaging and consumer watchdogs were rated the most trustworthy “information channels”, followed by friends and family, word of mouth and third-party kite marks. Celebrity endorsement came second from bottom in the list of 15 sources of information, slightly above “junk mail” leaflets.

Email This Page