STUDY: No One Cares About Your Celebrity Endorsements


We have consciously uncoupled ourselves from your opinion

Today in That’s Encouraging news: despite what might seem like evidence to the contrary, the public at large cares not a whit for the opinions of whatever celebrity might happen to endorse your client’s products.

According to a survey conducted by “industrial-strength Word Press hosting platform” WP Engine that involved 1,000 Americans “indicative of the entire nation”(?), consumers want content straight from the client–not the client’s big-name spokesperson.

The most important number:

  • 96% of participants don’t want to read celebrities blogging about products

The other findings, however, are a bit more surprising…

Basically, the public wants brands to create their own original content–a conclusion that just happens to match recent trends in the communications industry.

  • 48% of those surveyed say it’s “important” for brands to maintain and post regularly on their own blogs

Here are some numbers we almost don’t believe:

  • 46% of consumers say they read their favorite brands’ blogs, and 40% say that brands will suffer if they don’t post regularly
  • 40% prefer to get news from the corporate source as opposed to “a news magazine or website”
  • 52% visit corporate home pages for info on the company; surprisingly, only 25% check out social media accounts (though women were nearly twice as likely to fall into that camp) and only 22% check third-party articles first

And here’s your opening:

  • 27% of Americans would like to see brands produce articles on important issues
  • 16% would like to see a brand present research on its own industry

They also prefer straight up NYT-style reporting to blogs, listicles and lighter pieces. Why do they want to see such content? Because it gives them up-to-date info straight from the horse’s mouth (32%) and allows for a more personal connection with the company in question (16%).

Of course, we don’t want to take these conclusions too far. While the public continues to deride Ms. Paltrow, most earthy brands would still love a GOOP mention.

On the celebrity matter: another recent survey revealed that people trust content created by product/industry experts more than any other kind–and fame does not make one an expert on anything other than being famous.

The real conclusion, though, is that brands have the power to write their own narratives as long as they do it in a substantial way. If their homepages aren’t serving as sources of valuable information for consumers, then they risk missing out–no matter what their celebrity spokespeople might say.

@PatrickCoffee Patrick Coffee is a senior editor for Adweek.