How to Leverage a Celebrity Partnership: A Performance Marketing Perspective

An effective celebrity partnership can be a powerful tool in your digital marketing arsenal in addition to the other benefits it can have across your business - if leveraged correctly. Here are some tips on how to make the most of a celebrity partnership from a performance marketing perspective, and maximize its impact on your bottom line. 

First, let’s create a hypothetical example. Your brand has signed a deal with a celebrity to promote your product in some way and you want to ensure that you can maximize this partnership from every angle. Think The Nike x Billie Eilish AF1 collaboration. 

A pair of Nike's AF1 x Billie Eilish Sneakers
Billie Eilish's Collaboration with Nike AF1

One of the most obvious is from a digital marketing perspective, specifically paid advertising. Yes, you can post on your social media and update the imagery on your website or even throw an event to gain PR traction but at the end of the day you are missing out if your digital marketing team is not fully in the loop from the contract stage to days before the partnership is announced. 

Read on for a brief overview of the important factors that should be considered to get the most value out of your brand’s celebrity partnership when thinking about how you can leverage the power of performance marketing to boost results even further.  

1. Define your business objectives and the ad spend that you are planning to commit

In order to effectively leverage a celebrity partnership from a digital marketing perspective, it's important to have clear business objectives in place. These objectives should be aligned with your overall marketing strategy and should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. For example, your objective could be to increase brand awareness by X% within a specific timeframe, or to drive sales of a specific product by a certain amount.

In addition to having clear business objectives, it's also important to plan your ad spend carefully. This will depend on your budget and the scope of the partnership, ultimately the key is to make sure that your ad spend is in line with your overall business objectives and that you are aligned on projected performance based on previous data. 

2. Pick the channels that make the most sense for a given celebrity

Once you have established your business objectives and planned your ad spend, the next step is to pick the channels that make the most sense for a given celebrity. This means evaluating different channels where you already have the most success and where the celebrity has the biggest audience / most engaged audience. For example, if you already have proven success utilizing paid ads on Instagram this is an ideal situation for you to test audiences that already perform well as well as new audiences that cater to the partnership in particular. 

3. Create ad content that is tailored to those channels 

To start, this is under the assumption that in your contract you are able to use the content you create with a celebrity for paid ads on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Once you have selected the channels that make the most sense for your celebrity partnership, the next step is to create ad content that is tailored to those channels. This means ensuring from the start of the partnership that these channels are top of mind when creating your marketing materials. For example, if you are planning to use TikTok as your primary channel, then you should create ad content that aligns with the content that performs well on the platform like trends and quick cutting video. 

4. Test, test, test!

The beauty of advertising on digital platforms is the testing capabilities it allows for. Once you have launched your ad content featuring your celebrity, it's important to test and iterate off of the content that performs well. This means analyzing the engagement and performance of the content on the chosen channels, and using that data to make informed decisions about how to improve your ad content to further scale your performance. Iterations can be as simple as changing a headline or the hook of a video. 

All in all, a celebrity partnership can add a ton of positive value to your brand and could be the next initiative that truly moves the needle. Most importantly, stick to what you already know works well and double down on what has been proven to produce results for a given celebrity. 

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