Are Old Navy’s ads more effective sans celebrities?
Old Navy is shifting away from its celebrity-driven commercials starring Amy Schumer, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Elizabeth Banks to focus on product-based spots.
The campaigns starring female comedians ran over the last three years.
“It’s time to move on to something new,” Jamie Gersch, Old Navy’s chief marketing officer, told Advertising Age.
The first execution, entitled “Hi, Fashion,” focuses on colorful khakis. Women are seen climbing out windows to the surprise of suitors down below, throwing red balls or hitting them with golf clubs, and dancing. The ad concludes with: “All pants, jeans and tops up to 40 percent off.”
“That idea of ‘Hi, Fashion’ versus ‘high fashion’ and taking fashion so seriously — really what we are trying to do is just let fun be the fashion statement, versus you being the fashion statement,” Ms. Gersch told Ad Age. “This is something that’s obviously been core to Old Navy’s DNA for a long time.”
A second execution, “Hi, Rollers,” coming in March, features women and girls skateboarding and focuses on a floral-fashion theme. The ad includes a social component with the hashtag #SayHi.
The change comes as declining television viewership and shifts to digital media have altered the way celebrity endorsements work. Bloggers and other social influencers increasingly compete with traditional celebrities.
“The Future of Celebrity Marketing” report from Celebrity Intelligence in association with Econsultancy last year found a wide majority of surveyed marketing specialists still felt celebrity marketing was either “very effective” or “quite effective.” But the report concluded that while traditional musicians, models or movie stars used in media campaigns can help with visibility, a strong social media presence is required to “cut through” with the general public.
The report states, “Brands will need to get wise about only collaborating with stars who have a true affiliation with their brand or products to achieve any real impact. Additionally, less social media savvy celebrities will need to think carefully about their presence on social media moving forward, and decide whether they want to be in it for the long haul.”
- Hi, Fashion – Spring into Old Navy’s latest collection – YouTube
- Bye, Amy Schumer: Old Navy Tries New Approach Sans Celebrities – Advertising Age
- Old Navy ads ditch funny ladies for nobodies – New York Daily News
- Influencer Marketing Update: Non-Celebrity Influencers 10 Times More Likely to Drive In-Store Purchases – Collective Bias
- Study: Social Media Talent Gains Marketing Clout – Women’s Wear Daily
- The Future Of Celebrity Marketing – Celebrity Intelligence
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Are celebrity-driven advertising campaigns generally more effective than product-driven ones for retailers? Has the arrival of social and digital media been more positive or negative for celebrity endorsements?