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How to find the right celebs for your consumer PR campaign

How to find the right celebs for your consumer PR campaign

We all know celebrities are a powerful tool when it comes to promoting a consumer product or service. When it works, having a celebrity photographed with one of your brand’s products or services can be the best form of advertising, and in many cases can be much more cost-effective than an advertising campaign within a glossy magazine. When it doesn’t, the celebrity and the brand could be on the end of some tough criticism!

A prime example of this is the Kate Middleton effect. The second Kate is pictured in an outfit from the Great British High Street it is guaranteed to sell out within hours. Zara, Reiss and Whistles have all benefited from the Kate Middleton effect and even better, at no cost to the brand given Kate’s support of the High Street and insistence on paying for all her clothes and not accepting freebies. Take a look at some of her most popular outfits

So given the power behind a celebrity endorsement, it is really important for consumer brands to get it right and make the most of it to ensure it is of benefit to the brand. We are very accustomed to sourcing and working with celebrity endorsements, so here are our top tips to making it work:

Choose the right celebrity

Many brands don’t have the luxury of Kate Middleton walking into their stores so in these cases, an approach to a celebrity’s agent will be the foot in the door. When approaching celebrities to gift them products or a service it is important to ensure the offering is beneficial to both parties. For the celebrity, if they are going to be talking about a product or service, it must be something they like and believe in so they can talk genuinely about it. For the brand, it is key to ensure the celebrity is right for the brand and is influential to the target market.

A particularly successful celebrity project we ran was with LighterLife. We sourced and appointed Pauline Quirke as an ambassador to the brand which achieved more than 30,000 new clients leads for the diet company. This was so successful because Pauline was the perfect fit for the brand, she ticked all our boxes of a high-profile celebrity with weight to lose and who was well-known amongst the LighterLife demographic. Take a look at our work here.

Make the most out of their support

Maisie Williams

Image Courtesy of Nickleby1453,

For brands that succeed in gaining celebrity fans it is important you use this as a promotional tool. Strike up a conversation with them on twitter about their favourite products, promote via the brand’s online platforms and customer newsletters. Tapping into their fan base is likely to generate new fans for the brand and in turn, lead to further sales of the product.

An example of this is the work we did with Red Driving School with Game Of Thrones star Maisie Williams and sing-songwriter Nina Nesbitt.

Be careful

Over recent months it has become apparent to the media and public about brands who gift celebrities or pay for their endorsement but do not share this information publicly. When gifting a celebrity and using social media channels to promote this, it is important to be honest about where the products were bought by the celebrity.

A good way to highlight this is through social media, a simple tweet to the celebrity asking if they received their gift or if they liked their gift means it is clear that the product is not something they have paid for. For those under contract as an ambassador, introduce them to fans and followers as the new ambassador.

How an internship kickstarted my PR career

You devote three years of your life studying, partying and allegedly ‘finding yourself’ at university, spending a decent chunk of your parents’ hard-earned cash… but hurrah, you earn yourself a solid degree and the world is now your oyster, right? Wrong.

With greater competition for jobs than ever before, it will lead many of us to undergo internships. The very word has mixed connotations depending on your experiences; for some, it can bring back harrowing memories of receiving no pay and performing horrendous tasks, yet for others, it can be the gateway to a full-time job that they have always craved. I am fortunate enough to say that I am in the latter.

I began my PHA journey back at the end of February, lending an extra pair of hands for the UFC Fight Night in London. A baptism of fire, you may think, but one that I enjoyed immensely. My two weeks came to an end, I thought I had done everything asked of me with perhaps a dash of aplomb and received those dreaded words that have let me down before from companies and women alike; ‘I’ll be in touch’. Safe to say I wasn’t taking anything for granted. Low and behold, I received a phone call on the Monday afternoon asking me to come back, this time for a month’s paid internship. Happy days!

An internship gave me a way in to the world of PR.

This developed into a further three month’s paid internship, all the while being made to feel extremely welcome and a part of the PHA family. The culture and the people of the place meant that I quickly knew that a full-time job here was my aspiration and made sure I did everything in my power to make this happen. Graduates on internships are certainly a two-way street. There will be organisations out there that are merely looking for free labour but on the other side, candidates have to show competency and more importantly enthusiasm to convince that they could be a long-term fixture.

The Times’ this week in their University Guide highlighted the importance of internships and their ability to increase employability and they’d be right. All the way through your studies achieving good grades is constantly drummed into you as an absolute must, yet the minute you graduate, employers are hammering on about having suitable work experience. There doesn’t appear to be enough guidance at universities to help graduates overcome, what can be, a substantial bridge between education and employment. While it is extremely tempting to enjoy the rigours of Jeremy Kyle, Philip Schofield and co during the four months of summer you enjoy while at university, I would advise to make the most out of your time off in the form of internships.

I believe it speaks volumes for PHA when nearly half of the workforce began as interns, many of which are now in senior and management roles. It provides excellent motivation and inspiration that it could perhaps be me in that position someday and also gives those members in authority a sense of empathy, with the likes of myself, who are on the first rung of the ladder.

The journey from internship to a fully-fledged member of the team is not always an easy one but I must admit mine has been quite serene. Engaging with colleagues in more social settings has been crucial and has helped me feel truly part of a developing business. It may have taken me longer than I initially imagined finding suitable employment going via telesales and packaging women’s underwear, but in the danger of sounding hugely clichéd, it has been worth the wait!