Popular wisdom asserts that getting a celebrity endorsement is a tried-and-true, simple-to-implement way to maximize advertising effectiveness that yields stronger ties with viewers and, ultimately, greater sales. Not only do advertisers incorporate celebrity endorsements into campaigns, frequently they develop campaigns around them.
Our study of more than 2,600 ads found that – contrary to popular wisdom – celebrity ads do not perform any better than non-celebrity ads, and in some cases they perform much worse. In our data, whether or not a celebrity endorses a product was unimportant in determining whether an ad resonated with viewers. In fact, when compared with industry norms, relatively few celebrity ads were able to earn performance marks above their industry averages.