We all know a famous face can help grab some attention, particularly in the pages of the lifestyle magazines, so the temptation to recruit a celeb as a vehicle for your message is understandable.
But despite the likely benefits, there are also many potential pitfalls in aligning your hard built brand with an individual in the limelight, so here are our top tips for working with celebrities.
- Think about what a celebrity can really offer your organisation. What value will they add? If it’s not likely to be significant, the risks possibly outweigh the benefits.
- Be realistic about who you can get.
- Do your research. Take the time to find out if there are any potential conflicts of interest or hypocrisies in your celebrity’s personal interests, lifestyle or other commitments.
- Be clear on the role you want them to play when you approach them. Keep things specific and simple and agree the detail of their involvement upfront.
- Introduce your celebrity to your service users and frontline staff if you can. Establishing a more personal connection will make them a far more passionate representative and could forge a more long-term relationship.
- Remember to put contingency plans in place. Famous faces can let you down at the last minute as they have so many pressures on their time.
- Bad behaviour or new revelations about their personal life can quickly have a negative effect on your brand, so make sure you have a crisis management plan in place.
- Bear in mind that celebrities have a shelf life (especially reality TV stars) and the media are always looking for something new. It is good to keep celebrities on board but each campaign is different and may need a new celebrity to promote it.
- Charities should not pay a celebrity for their time but should cover their expenses.
- And remember, celebrities aren’t the only way to get noticed, and they should only be used if they have a genuine interest in the charity and its work.