Wednesday, October 14, 2009

CelebTrack- the game of endorser ranking!!!

Percept talent management and Hansa research has done it again – their second leg of the survey tracking India's most powerful celebrities which they call as Celeb Track….

CelebTrack first phase in April 2009, happened with inputs from 6,000 people, rated celebrities on attributes like media presence,physique, popularity, power of persuasion and exposure had put Amitabh Bachan as the most powerful celebrity in India scoring high in most of the attributes that was studied…

Now Celeb Track second phase has come out with the results and MS Dhoni has taken over others as the most liked celebrity in India ,thanks partly due to the survey which happened soon after IPL and partly due to the lackluster show by his other team mates and the over exposure of celebs like SRK ….Dhoni has pushed Shah Rukh Khan to the second place and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan to the third. Amitabh Bachchan and Sachin Tendulkar have moved down many places compared to the last round of survey….

Ahem !

Well ….for the uninitiated, the research measured more than 400 celebrities across the country to generate a celebrity power score (CPS) by ranking them on the above said parameters .

The main facets of the latest study goes like this …

“Among the male actors, Shah Rukh Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Hrithik Roshan, Akshay Kumar and Salman Khan feature in that order in the power list. Among the female actors, it is Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Katrina Kaif, Priyanka Chopra, Hema Malini and Kareena Kapoor. Among cricketers, the list includes MS Dhoni, Sachin Tendulkar, Yuvraj Singh, Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid.

According to the wave 2 (phase 2)of the study, Salman Khan, Sachin Tendulkar, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Sania Mirza top their respective genres as the most recognised stars. In terms of likeability, Amitabh Bachchan replaces Salman Khan. The latter scores low on persuasion, exposure and image parameters. In terms of popularity, cricketers score among the classes while actors score higher among the masses.

The top five most persuasive stars are Amitabh Bachchan among male actors, Yuvraj Singh among cricketers, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan among female actors and Sania Mirza among other sports personalities. Higher classes and men get more influenced by the top ten stars, while the masses get more influenced by women, the study suggests.

While Sachin Tendulkar falls below Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh in terms of power of persuasion, he still holds on for products needing maturity and stature, such as financial products.

The respondents did not wish to read more about Rakhi Sawant, Mallika Sherawat and Sreesanth, while they wished to read more about celebrities such as Aishwarya Rai, Akshay Kumar and Sachin Tendulkar”

I wouldn’t agree with the rakhi thing here ( lol) but for sure sree santh I know more and enough.. Please stop glorifying the lil lad media folks!!!!..

Now brands can make informed and learned decisions, as per the percept team who is behind this work, and no longer the big brands who bet huge money on stars have to rely on gut feeling and anecdotal learning. Also, celebrities can yardstick themselves in comparison with their viewers and for that reason price their participation with brands.

Males and the ones of the higher SEC’s seems to be liking the cricketers more than the cinema stars but then cricket in India seems to be revolving around Dhoni, Tendulkar and Yuvaraj . And for me one shocker is the study fact which says that most people have heard most of the cricketers names but wouldn’t connect their faces with names.. if that is the case, what would happen to an Abhinav Bindra?

I mean people would have for sure heard the name but if they don’t know that he is HE when they se him on screen, will the brands that he endorse benefit?

It's all a game.. I mean the whole game of a celebrity choice…. Marketers, their agencies (like Percept) often ignore the key factors in the choice of the celebrity whom they select with fanfare and with all the logic of "his persona matching with our brands" et al….

Is the audience traits vis-à-vis persuasibility of the endorser taken care off?

Is there a study on the Monopoly of Communication source and its influence, Messages that is conveyed and its compatibility with the the belief /opinions/values of the receiver and the extent to which the Source is believed to have, expertise status/objectivity in the area of endorsement done?

Remember Rahul Dravid was a failure when he came for Bank of Baroda, so was Sania Mirza when she came for HP.. Dhoni and Mysore sandal is a classic case…

And in any case the risk of the celebrity becoming a scoundrel overnight threatens brands,,, not that it happens often but when it happens as percept would know it would be Horrible Mess…. Hansie Cronje was the key celebrity endorsers for Siyaram's J.Hampstead brand of clothing when he got caught in the max fixing scandal…..The campaign featuring Cronje had been running on the print, electronic and outdoor media and Siyaram and its advertising agency, Percept, watched in consternation and utter sadness as their celebrity endorser turned into an internationally detested sportsman during the night. Now that is quite an extreme case and let God forbid.. But the point is .. is it a safe bet to hang a brands future (entirely)to another brand whose brand value is quite volatile?

Having said that let me also add (quickly) that some study and some statistics is good... as the good old saying goes ,'something is better than nothing'!!!


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