Real Life Celebrity Couple Brand Endorsements Cultural Studies Essay

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After having tried and implemented various ideas and technique, the latest emerging trend in the field of Celebrity Endorsement is that of using Real Life couples to Endorse certain Brands. The fact to be emphasized is that celebrities alone do not guarantee success, as consumers nowadays understand advertising. They know what advertising is and how it works. People realize that celebrities are being paid a lot of money for endorsements and this knowledge makes them cynical about celebrity endorsements.

Hence, marketers and advisers have started casting Real life couples to prove the genuineness of their brands . The Brands, especially those, whose purchases depend not just on the individuals but also on the preference of their real life partners, have been employing this trend to gain maximum results. The picture perfect, real-life Bollywood couples are emerging as the most coveted brand ambassadors.

Successful celebrity couple endorsements for a brand- An Indian perspective

A number of Indian couples have been involved in Celebrity Couple Brand Endorsements.To name a few: Ajay Devgan & Kajol, Abhishek Bachchan & Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, John Abraham & Bipasha Basu etc. However, the Couple termed as a Brand Couple is Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor.

Saif Ali Khan & Kareena Kapoor - The Celebrity Couple's Brand Portfolio

After Saif and Karina signed Airtel endorsements, they are now being known as India's answer to Victoria and David Beckham. They are on their way to becoming hottest power duo with companies approaching them for joint endorsements. They were also the ones who set the trend of endorsing products together. They make a neat Rs.80 million to Rs.90 million per advert. According to a media report, companies are willing to offer over Rs.100 million per ad for the duo to make joint endorsement. They are also referred to as "Saifeena" together. What makes them different from other filmi sweethearts such as Ajay and Kajol Devgan, John Abraham and Bipasha Basu, and Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone, is the fact that both Kapoor and Khan are Bollywood royalty. She is from the first family of the industry, his father is the Nawab of Pataudi.

Saif, who makes a neat Rs.360 million a year from his 12 endorsements, and Kareena, who represents five brands, endorse the following brands together:

Ads for Procter and Gamble Co.'s (P&G) shampoo brand Head & Shoulders

Bharti Airtel Ltd's digital TV and mobile service businesses.

Branded Magazines: The Lonely Planet Magazine, India

Manish Malhotra Collections.

PepsiCo India is on a joint promotions for their snack brands Lays and Kurkure and the couple are also likely to support for charity

Metro Shoes

Analysis of the Brand Portfolio

For the analysis, the multiplier effect formula for a successful brand as stated below is used:

S=P* D*AV --the multiplier effect

Where S is a successful brand,

P is an effective product.

D is Distinctive Identity

and AV is Added values.

The realm of the celebrity's impact is confined to bestow a distinctive identity and provide AV to the brand; the celebrity does not have the power to improve or debilitate the efficiency and features of the core product.

Thus, in light of the Distinctive Identity & the Various added values that this power couple imparts, their various Endorsements are analyzed as follows:

P&G's Head & Shoulder Shampoo Brand

In the Head & Shoulders ad, Kareena is seen just for a split-second, but any brand that has them both on board will eventually use them. in 2008 P&G signed on Khan for their shampoo brand Head & Shoulders, a few months after they had signed on Kapoor making them the first company to leverage the romance. The ad had images of fast cars, music and Kapoor popping up as thought bubbles on Khan's mind in the television commercial.0.jpg

Added Values to the Brand:

In a single advertisement the Brand targets both the female and the male audience.

Both Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapur have been popular among the youth and can easily influence their buying decisions

Since a real Life couple was cast at the same time in the same frame, the advertisement captures the attention of the audience, thus making the presence of the brand felt.

Celebrity Couple Benefits:

Since this was the first advert they did together, it must have been done for personal reasons like spending more time together.

However, eventually, they have made themselves big in the world of Celebrity Endorsements.

Bharti Airtel Ltd. Digital TV and Mobile Service airtel.jpg

Airtel proved a brilliant strategy by casting Saif and Kareena together for their endorsement

Added Values to the Brand:

Since, Television is an activity which is mostly done with a person who is mostly dear to one, the advert proves this point quite impressively by casting both of them in the same frame.

Since, they are not married, the ad also reaches out to the couples having a "live in" relationship.

Instead of casting two separate stars, and then worrying about their personal work quotient, any Brand would prefer to cast a couple already in a relation and having great frequency, so that the chemistry shows on screen and the advert looks as real as possible.

Celebrity Couple Benefits:

After Head & Shoulders, this was the second endorsement both of them signed together.

The deal weighted a huge amount of sum, and gave both of them a platform to showcase their on screen chemistry too. It also helps them bag offers in films together.

METRO Shoes Brand

Saif and Kareena Walk With 'Happy Feet' as 'Happy Couple'

Added Values to the Brand:

The endorsement deal was just a photo-shoot and not the normal video commercial since that itself added the weight required to the campaign.

With Celebrities, not only their appearance but also quotes help in promoting the brand, e.g. during the launch Kareena had said, "I don't know if anybody wants to be in our shoes or not; but we are definitely proud to wear Metro shoes!" .Saif Remarked," "Brands do their intensive research before choosing you as the brand ambassador. So I was obviously pleased when I was approached by Metro Shoes."kareena-saif-metro.jpg

The couple's public display of personal emotions, fights, tattoos, love expression adds to building the buzz round the brand.


Branded Magazines: The Lonely Planet Magazine, India

Kareena Kapoor and Saif Ali Khan launched The Lonely Planet Magazine India.

Added Values to the Brand:

Launching activities done by two celebrities together gives double benefits to the brand.

It send across a message that "you read and make those around you too read"

PepsiCo Snacks

Kareena Kapoor has been recently appointed the new brand ambassador of soft drinks giant PepsiCo's snacks. She will be again seen with her boyfriend Saif Ali Khan in the new ad campaign for the product.

Suggestions as an Image Manager

Since we are dealing with couple celebrity Endorsements, more than the Image Managers , the couples themselves are the decision makers. However, the respective ImageManagers do give the celebrities their opinions.

In this case, since both the celebrities complement each other so well and have just started endorsing the brands, all the choices so far are valid and can be justified. After some more number of assignments there could be an occurrence of Celebrity Vamping‟ which means over-use of the celebrites in selling products. The audiences don't like it because they figure that if the same celebrity couple is used to endorse multiple products, the public will become suspicious of their authority and expertise. The way ahead seems to lead towards saturation point of celebrities seen endorsing products.

There also seems a good need to have the celebrities fit into the relevant frame of the commodity being endorsed. Since not all advertisements need a celebrity or a couple for that matter to endorse it. There are many advertisements which have never felt the need of doing so. E.g. Fevicol,Vim,Lifeboy,Amul,Fair and Lovely.etc. The point of debate can be that, whether all the brands casting Celebrity couples for their endorsements can do with just one of them. In Saif and Kareena's case, since they are real life couples, their role has been very crucial and leads a lot of depth to the entire campaign of their various joint endorsements till date.

The other brands which they can look forward to endorsing together are Car Brands, Brands of Watches, Banks etc.

Concluding Remarks

Re-phrasing Aristotle's quote :

"Any brand can get a celebrity. That is easy. But getting a celebrity consistent with the right brand, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose and in the right way...that is not easy!"