Fictional spokes-characters in brand advertisements and communication: A consumer's perspective
Keywords:Spokes-characters, Brand communication, Marketing communication, Credibility, Advertising, Consumers
Fictional spokes-characters in promotion and marketing communication are becoming more popular with brands. This study examined the impact spokes-characters have on the brands they endorse. Celebrities have been used as endorsers since the late nineteenth century and marketers have established that they are one of the most effective methods of advertising. The popularity of celebrity endorsements springs from the numerous benefits that companies experience by employing them. The contribution of this study is in addressing an area in marketing that looks at consumer perceptions of spokes-characters, how these consumer views influence their perceptions of advertisements and brands that use spokes-characters, and ultimately the influence on purchase intention. The studysurveyed 260 consumers in the Braamfontein business district of Johannesburg, South Africa. The study found that consumers are in favour of spokes-characters and advertisements that use spokes-characters. Moreover, the researchers concluded that only a spokes-character’s attractiveness and expertise influence attitudes toward the advertisement and a spokes-character’s trust influences attitudes toward the brand. In addition, the study found that individually, both attitude variables have a positive effect on purchase; however, the relationship between the attitude towards the advertisement and the attitude towards the brand tended to be stronger.
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