In a recent poll conducted by AdWeekMedia via LinkedIn, people were asked to rate the credibility of commercials for brands with and without the company CEOs in those ads. The key question was — does having the company CEO in an ad make the ad more or less credible?
The results are actually a bit surprising to me. 49% of respondents said that the presence of the CEO made no difference to the credibility of an ad. I expected that number to be higher. Furthermore, 36% said that it makes an ad more credible when the CEO is in it while only 14% said it makes an ad less credible. Again, I’m surprised. Do over one-third of consumers actually feel that an ad is more credible because the company’s CEO is in it? I’m amazed by that.
The results beg the satirical question — should marketing messages come from the CEO? For example, “I use XYX brand, and so should you.” I hope not.
Maybe 20 years ago I would believe these statistics, but they amaze me today. In a world where the news is wrought with stories of CEOs allowing companies to self-destruct, pursuing unethical and/or illegal practices, and taking corporate jets to Washington D.C. hearings while their companies are nearing failure, I have to wonder how accurate these statistics are.
Seeing a CEO in a commercial has no effect on me at all. If anything, it has a negative effect because it makes me wonder if that’s really the best the marketing team could do.
Just recently, Dominos got a lot of flack from consumers who posted blog posts (example) voicing their dislike of the Dominos CEO Bailout commercials (watch below).
I think a CEO’s presence in a commercial devalues the message, because most people can’t relate to them and they’re not necessarily thought of that highly anymore. Certainly, there are some CEOs that can help a commercial and add credibility (e.g., Steve Jobs), but there are far more who either hurt a brand or don’t help at all when they appear in commercials. In other words, most of the time, the marketing team can do better.
What do you think? Do CEOs help or hurt brands when the appear in commercials for them?
Latest posts by Susan Gunelius (see all)
- Coca-Cola Contour Bottle Turns 100 This Year - March 3, 2015
- World’s 50 Most Popular Brands - February 25, 2015
- Brands with the Most Loyal Customers in 2015 - February 18, 2015
- The World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies in 2015 - February 14, 2015
- UK Consumers Will Share Private Data with Brands Under Certain Conditions - February 4, 2015