Having a celebrity endorsement or even just a picture of a celebrity using a product can be a great boon for any business. Finding a celebrity who is a good fit for your brand and willing to work with a company can be a challenge, however. If you’re like 99% of us, you don’t have any celebrities as personal friends, and you probably don’t know anyone who does. So it isn’t as easy as calling them up and saying, “Hey, Kanye! What’s up? I need you to wear a hat with my logo on it for a week or so. Cool?”
You can reach out in other ways though, and some otherwise unknown companies have had success getting their products in the hands of the A-listers. How did they do it? Here are some tips:
Before approaching anyone to seek their help with marketing and branding, make sure that you are absolutely prepared. Have the following ready:
- The product you’re hoping to succeed with should be perfected and have professional packaging
- Have samples ready to go – in the form of gifts, with a business card and a personal note of thanks
- A running professional website with up-to-date information about the company and product
- A press kit with a company summary and a biography.
Use Your Resources
There are millions of ways that people are connected throughout the world. Even if you or a close friend aren’t directly connected with a celebrity, in just the same way that people are only separated from Kevin Bacon by six degrees, many people can find links to people in the public eye. Whether it’s someone who graduated from the same university or someone with the same dog walker, these casual connections can be a great and legitimate starting point for approaching someone to help with branding. Make sure that your approach is clear, straightforward and direct so that the person who you hope will help with marketing does not feel scammed or used in any way. Remember that these people are likely approached in this manner extremely often.
How to Get Their Help
Once the initial contact has been made with distinct guidelines set out about who you are and what you are hoping to achieve, let your product and branding speak for itself. There are swag bags and luxury lounges for VIP’s set up at various celebrity events. These events are a great way to expose celebrities to your product but can be very difficult and expensive to gain access to. Make sure to make good use of any resources, networks, organizations and connections to get your product into the hands of the current and relevant celebrities who can aid with branding. Another option is to find the agency that the celebrity works with and call or email them directly with an offer.
Getting Celebrity Endorsements
Make sure that any official celebrity endorsements include contracts written by attorneys who specialize in endorsement deals. If an official endorsement is out of the question because of cost and time constraints, try to get a public photo of the celebrity with your product. Celebrities are often seen in magazines wearing different lines of jewelry, shoes, clothing, etc. Make sure to keep your eyes open for them using the product you gifted them. You might just get lucky with a great published photo of them and your product. If you take a picture of a celebrity and your product in public (like at your display booth), you will be able to use it on your website, Facebook, and Twitter pages for marketing and branding purposes.
Getting your brand used by celebrities can take a lot of work. Fortunately, this work often pays off in the end as the general public is exposed to your company. Having celebrities use and endorse a product is a great way to give a business a huge boost. Remember: to impress your clientele, especially the celebrity ones, what you need most is professionalism, a fantastic product, and integrity.
Matthew Toren is an Award Winning Author, Serial Entrepreneur, and Investor. He Co-Founded YoungEntrepreneur.com along with his brother Adam. Matthew is co-author of the newly released book: Small Business, Big Vision: “Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right” and also co-author of Kidpreneurs.