Celebrity Based Television Advertising –
Understanding Indian Consumer Attitudes
Northern Institute of Integrated Learning and Management – Centre for Management Studies
A central goal of today's advertising strategy is the persuasion of customers, who are becoming increasingly educated, sophisticated and selective. Obviously, the changes in markets and lifestyle are driving marketers to focus on more persuasive ways of promoting their products. In today's media driven markers, creative television advertising can promote not only products, but also attractive lifestyles and dreams that are highly valued by consumers. Very often, advertising makers use various advertising styles to influence consumers’ brand choice behavior. Among the different styles available, celebrity endorsement is becoming a popular choice in the advertising industry. Advertisers try to establish a link between their brands and a desirable image or lifestyle of a celebrity.
Research and experience show that consumers are most comfortable, and highly ready to spend, when celebrities endorse things that relate to their desired image. The perceived image of celebrities is likely to have a positive impact on product choice behavior (Goldsmith, Lafferty, and Newell, 2000; Mathur, Mathur, and Rangan, 1997). Consumers are likely to take more notice of celebrity advertisements and improve their level of product recall. In fact, the special influence of celebrity endorsement is further enhanced by the obvious features of television advertising. Television provides daily access to thousands of sport athletes, film and television stars, and other celebrities. This makes celebrity-based television advertising (CBTA) an attractive choice by advertising makers. The term CBTA will be used throughout this study to mean television advertising that depends primarily on celebrity endorsement to influence consumer brand choice behavior.
The objective of this research is to explore the Indian consumers’ attitudes towards celebrity based television advertising (CBTA) to understand how consumers respond to celebrity endorsement in television commercials. In particular, the study seeks to examine the influence of CBTA on consumers’ brand choice behavior and also whether consumer attitudes towards CBTA with respect to brand choice behavior vary with demographic variables (sex and income).
The celebrity concept
In today’s dynamic and highly competitive business environment, customers are becoming more demanding. Their expectations are continuously rising, with marketers continuing their efforts to meet them. In their creative advertising efforts, marketers turn to celebrity endorsement to influence consumer brand choice behaviour. A celebrity is a well known personality who enjoys public recognition by a large share of a certain group of people. Celebrities (example models, actors, artists and sports athletes) are known to the public for their accomplishments in areas other than product class endorsed. They usually enjoy high public recognition, and often have powerful influence upon endorsing products. They appear on television as spokespersons on behalf of the advertised brand, or ordinary users of such brand. In either way they often deliver a convincing message. They help increase the awareness of advertised brands and create positive feelings towards them. Eventually, this will positively affect consumers’ brand choice behaviour.
The decision to select a particular brand of product from the array of all brands with similar composition and cost/performance characteristics capable of satisfying the consumers' felt need.
Attitude means enduring favorable or unfavorable feelings, emotions and action tendencies towards an issue or subject. It is the amount of affect or feeling for or against a stimulus.
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