Celebrities Moving Product? Not So Much

Consumers just say no to names aligned with brands

American consumers insist that they are not swayed by celebrity endorsements. When asked by Adweek/Harris Interactive what their response is when a product or service is endorsed by a celebrity, more than three-quarters answered that it has no impact on their intent to buy. Just 4 percent said it makes them more likely to purchase.

Gender and age made little difference to the responses. The only notable variation was that nearly one in five of those aged 55 plus were less likely to buy something precisely because a celebrity had endorsed it.

Brands and their agencies press on regardless, pushing faces and names along with their products and services in a never-ending parade. They must know something we don't. Or is it that we are just reluctant to admit that a celebrity endorsement makes a difference to our buying decisions?

When a sports star, movie star or other celebrity endorses a product I am… Total (% of respondents) Age 18-34 Age 35-44 Age 45-54 Age 55+ Male Female
More likely to buy it 4 6 5 3 3 4 4
No more or less likely to buy it 77 78 78 80 75 78 77
Less likely to buy it 14 9 12 14 19 13 15
Not sure 4 7 4 3 3 5 4

SOURCE: Adweek/Harris Interactive, May 2011