celebrity endorsement



1.1       Background to the Study

            Model endorsement or celebrity branding is a form of an advertising campaign or marketing strategy used by brands, companies, or a non-profit organization which involves celebrities or a well-known person using their social status or their fame to help promote a product, service or even raise awareness on environmental or social matters. In this study model and celebrity will be used interchangeably as the two connote the same thing in this as far as this study is concern.

            Marketers use popular models endorsers in hopes that the positive images of the celebrity endorser of the brand will also be passed on to the products or the brand image associated with the celebrities. May companies and brands do this but most notable ones among them include but not limited to Genevieve Nnaji’s used by Etisalat,  Lux, Cintrion Energy drink, Range Rover Evogue, Etisalat, Polo and Amstel Malta,   P Square by Etisalat, Funke Akindele by Vita Foam,Globacom,,, Klin detergent, OMO, Wizkid by MTN, Pepsi, Guinness, Mr Ibu by Sports Betting company (MerryBet), GoTv. Also, Saka by Etisalat, MTN, Soulmate hair cream and many more (Olayinka, 2016).

            Celebrity branding is also known as celebrity endorsement, and is a form of publication by portraying a well recognized sports or entertainment celebrity to be a brand ambassador for a company or firm, and by using their social status to promote a service or product (Udo, Nwulu, & Stella, 2015).

            Marketers spend enormous amounts of money annually on celebrity endorsement contracts based on the belief that celebrities are effective spokespeople for their products or brands (Katyal, 2007). Celebrity Endorsement is viewed as a billion dollar industry in today’s era. Various companies are signing deals with celebrities in the hope that by using celebrities they can accomplish a unique and relevant position in the minds of the consumers. Celebrity endorsement is increasingly being employed across various industries regardless of the product type. It is known to be playing the role of a signaling strategy (Mustafa, 2005). Also According to Reynolds (2000) celebrity endorsement can give a brand a touch of glamour.

            Models are the use of well known persons face to help promote a product or service often through radio, television, newspaper, magazine, billboard, digial platforms, online etc. It also involves celebrities appearances at events of Pepsi such as launching, get together. It may involve celebrity use of display the product in the public with the intention to boost sales volume and have positive impact on the product.

            However, one of the brands that use models lots in its advertisement and other marketing means is Pepsi as a means of competing with other brands in the marketing. One of the many reasons for introducing celebrities in advertisement by Pepsi include but not limited to the following:

  1. Pepsi has coke as main competitor in those days and even up to date
  2. Pepsi is among the three most popular soft drink in Nigeria and many countries
  • Pepsi wants to generate more publicity
  1. Pepsi wants to remind consumers more in a different way

            Thus, during the 1960s, Joanie Sommers sang two popular commercial songs (“It’s Pepsi, for those who think young” and “Now you see it, now you don’t, oh, Diet Pepsi”) for Pepsi-Cola that were run in commercials and for which she came to be often referred to as “The Pepsi Girl” in 1974 Joseph Nicoletti, then of Brooklyn N.Y. now music-film consultant, Laguna Beach, California, sung and produced the theme “You’re Drinking Diet Pepsi and it Shows.

Also, 1984, Michael Jackson endorsed Pepsi with the launching of an advert called “The New Generation” with the objective to make Pepsi look young and coke look old. Jackson continued to endorse Pepsi with a series of adverts over 9 years. In short, it was Michael Jackson who started the whole Pepsi-celebrity tradition. In 1983, he and the cola brand inked a $5 million advertising deal, which at the time was an advertising record. Michael Jackson was the undisputed King of Pop and at the time, the most recognizable face in the world. Pepsi leveraged this popularity for its “New Generation” rebranding campaign, when they completely overhauled Pepsi’s old image and positioned itself as a hip, young alternative to stodgy, old-fashioned Coke. The campaign went down in the annals of advertising for a number of reasons: For many, it was the first time they had ever seen an ad with such high production value rivaling that of a top-budget Hollywood movie. Furthermore, Jackson was intimately involved in the choreography and entire look of the ad. Ever since then, several other models and celebrities had been used include by not limited to the followings:

  1. Ray Charles’ 1990-1993 ads for Diet Pepsi in “You Got the Right One, Baby, Uh Huh,” as “Uh Huh”.
  2. Also, Kendall Jenner a reality television star and fashion model was a Pepsi 24-hour wonder in April, she starred in a new PepsiCo. (PEP) “Live for Moments Anthem” ad.      
  3. Beyonce Knowles: The artist formerly known as Destiny got $50 million for a multi-ad contract with Pepsi in 2012, which still ranks as one of the most lucrative celebrity endorsements of all time. In 2004, she appeared in a Superbowl Pepsi ad alongside Britney Spears and Pink.
  4. Britney Spears in 2001 “Joy of Pepsi” ads were provocative and showed her in the glory of her prime. They also hilariously featured former Senator Bob Dole, who plays himsel viewing the ad on his TV and saying “Down boy,” ostensibly to his dog.

            In Nigeria, lots of celebrities especially sport and music pop stars have endorse Pepsi at one time or the others while many have even featured in it  advertisement campaigns, the list include but not limited to the following: Davido, Tiwa Savage, Wizkid, Tekno, SeyiShay, DJ Spinall, DJ Xclusive, DJ Obi and DJ Cuppy etc. it is against this background that the study examines the trends in the use of models in the Nigeria advertising industry particularly of Pepsi and how much influence it has on the buying and consumption habit of the audience.

1.2      Statement of the Problem

            Models otherwise called celebrities endorsement has been one of the main marketing strategies to persuade and get sales. In a study conducted by Taiwanese shows that consumers show greater recall of products that have been endorsed by celebrities  regardless of whether they are actual fans or not. The human brain recognizes celebrities similarly to how it recognizes people we actually know. The effect is that, if consumers happen to be fans, they place a higher value on products that celebrities are endorsing – it is as if they are receiving advice from a valued friend.

            Also, critics have identified the use of celebrities vouching for or promoting products, brands as deceptive form of marketing as some consumers may consume product or use a brand because its sport lord has been used to advertise it.

            Although, lots of studies have been conducted on the use of models and celebrities but most of them are conducted in abroad which cannot be replicated in Nigeria even where they exist they often focus on brands generally, unlike this study that focus only on Pepsi use of model and it influence on Yaba College of Technology, Lagos.   

1.3       Objectives of the Study

Although, the primary objectives of the study is to the trends in the use of models in the Nigeria advertising industry particularly in Pepsi. Other specific objectives are:

  1. To examine the extent which Yabatech students are exposing to model in Pepsi advertisement.
  2. To ascertain whether the use of models or celebrities endorsement having any positive effects on Pepsi buying decision among Yabatech students.
  3. To examine whether Yabatech students’ drinking or recommendation of Pepsi is a result of their expose to the model use in the advertisement.
  4. To ascertain if the use of models/celebrities in Pepsi advertisement influence Yabatech students to remain loyal to the brand.
  5. To find out whether Yabatech students recall Pepsi advert with model than those without model.

1.4       Research Questions

  1. To what extent are Yabatech students exposing to model in Pepsi advertisement?
  2. Are models or celebrities endorsement perceived as having any positive effects on Pepsi buying decision among Yabatech students?
  3. Do Yabatech students drink or recommend pepsi as a result of their expose to the model use in the advertisement
  4. Does the use of models/celebrities in Pepsi influence Yabatech students to remain loyal to the brand?
  5. To what extent do Yabatech students recall Pepsi advert with model than those without model?

1.5       Significance of the Study

            This research finding will contribute significantly to the existing body of knowledge in the area of mass communication, advertising and marketing in general.

            The advertisers will through this study realized and understand the true impact of various strategies particularly the use of models/celebrities in promoting their brands, products and other services especially in the era of competing brands. Also, the kind of music and celebrities use contribute significantly to motivate customers.

            Media such as radio, television, digital platforms including advertising agencies may gain from this study as it will uncover what consumers wants and how they want it in order to design an appeal and strategies to gain more audience to their clients

            All government and other stakeholder that are saddled with the responsibility of ensuring fair and suitable commercial may equally benefit from this study as it serves as an eye opening by monitoring the kind of celebrities, models, lyrics and other strategies and appeal combine in other to prevent obscene, respect for the mirror and religion among others by enforcing truthfulness, fairness and non- deceit campaign that may persuade or lure audience to buy less quality products as critics once said model use in advert is more of deceit.   

            Researchers from advertising, marketing, mass communication and other related field may who may be interested in conducting similar or related one shall find this study relevant as it offers them empirical opportunity to see what has been done while it will serve as a reference  materials for them, thus fill some gaps in musical advertising and how it works especially in this era where music is gaining more momentum in the society. 

1.6       Scope of the Study

            The research which examines the trends in the use of models in the Nigeria advertising industry particularly on Pepsi brand has been narrowed in scope to the Lagos State Polytechnic Students due to the proximity of the institution to the researcher. The brand (is picked because it is one of the most obvious brands that use lots of models/celebrities to promote its brand) while Laspotech students were also selected because they often expose to Pepsi brand ambassadors at different shows, television commercials and even on various digital signage in Lagos. 

1.7       Operational Definition of Terms

Trends: This refers to the proliferation, popularity and growing rate in the use of models otherwise called celebrity in Pepsi brand advert and other commercials among companies in Nigeria.  

Use of Models: This means when a brand like Pepsi seek a celerity such as Musicians like Wizkid or footballer like Osasi Odenwingie to use their product in public, promote it or appear in their important event such as launching etc

Celebrity: They are star or role used in adverting products or services, it could be television  stars, actors actresses, sport figures or entertainers whose appearance in the advertisement of such goods or services sustains the  interest of his /her  audience on the  goods  or services so advertised.

Advertising: It is the process of disseminating persuasive information to the public through a non-personal medium like radio, television, magazine, newspaper, billboard and online with the aim to lure them to buy or use Pepsi especially with the use of model as a part of its strategy.  

Pepsi: Pepsi is a carbonated soft drink produced and manufactured by PepsiCo. Originally created and developed in 1893 by Caleb Bradham and introduced as Brad’s Drink, it was renamed as Pepsi-Cola on August 28, 1898, and then as Pepsi in 1961.

LASPOTECH Students: These are the students of Lagos State College of Technology otherwise called Yabatech who have tendency to have exposed or seen models in advertisement especially a model showcasing Pepsi brand.  






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