An advertising campaign is enhanced or stalled by the choice for a spokesperson.
One of the biggest mistakes marketing people make is thinking the spokesperson for smaller advertising campaigns is not necessarily important. Every person who represents your company (including owners) to the public, regardless of the capacity, is important.
That goes for the actor you choose to be in your run of television commercials right down to the voice-over talent you hire for a single 30-second radio spot. You must treat every spokesperson as though they can make or break your company.
The first element you look for in a good spokesperson is whether your target audience can identify with that spokesperson or not. When your commercial comes on television or radio, you want your target buying audience to be comfortable with the spokesperson they see or hear. In some cases, a company will create a character and choose an unknown actor to play that character. You need to choose the right actor and your character needs to mean something to your audience.
If you are choosing a voice-over specialist, the voice needs to have qualities that your target audience can identify with.
Another helpful tip for choosing a spokesperson is to create a uniform that helps create a recognizable image. For example, if you own a construction company, then your spokesperson needs to wear the same hard-hat and type of shirt in every commercial or segments of your marketing campaign. This is part of the brand name recognition that good advertising develops. If it is done properly, then all a person has to do is see that character in costume and the immediate association with your company is made.
Some companies hire actors to be their spokesperson and then do not put clauses in the contracts that deal with general behavior and conduct. When an actor signs on to be a spokesperson for your company, he or she is always going to represent your company to the public.
When people see that actor in public, they will automatically associate him with your company. Controversial celebrities can be powerful spokespeople, but they can also create more problems than they solve. If you want your company to be considered cutting edge and you hire a controversial celebrity to represent your company, then be prepared to have your public relations experts working a little overtime to make sure that the controversy remains a novelty and does not reflect badly on your organization.
An advertising spokesperson is a critical element in any advertising campaign. If it is done properly, then that spokesperson's image becomes popular in multiple kinds of media and helps to draw positive attention to your company.
Choose your spokesperson carefully, and monitor the spokesperson's activities for as long as they represent your organization to your current customers and to a hopefully growing contingency of prospects.
Jan Kantor is a Southwest Florida business consultant and executive coach. For more information, or to contact him regarding workplace solutions, his website is www.jankantor.com.