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Campaign-specific contracts on the rise as social media changes the rules of celebrity engagement


The emergence and rapid uptake of social media has changed demands, expectations and outcomes of traditional celebrity-led campaigns, finds the Celebrity Intelligence and Econsultancy report.

London/New York. When it comes to selecting a brand ambassador, celebrities remain the number one choice. But now, thanks to a whole new generation of social media talent, the way marketers are engaging and working with celebrities has changed. According to ‘The Future of Celebrity Marketing’ research report, social media has become a top priority for all celebrity-led endorsements with one-off, campaign-specific contracts on the rise.

The most comprehensive of its kind on the topic, the report was released today by Celebrity Intelligence, the leading digital provider of celebrity contacts, news, events and insights, in association with Econsultancy. ‘The Future of Celebrity Marketing’ demonstrates the impact social media is having on celebrity engagement and assesses how the future market is shaping up as budgets in this space are set to increase by up to 50%.

Key findings from the report include:

  • Celebrity marketing is a well-established practice. The survey findings show that 74% of agency respondents, and 69% of companies (representative of in-house marketers), are currently working with celebrities.
  • 70% of companies are identifying and managing their celebrity contacts in-house. This is proving a challenging, time consuming task for 66% of companies and 58% of agencies.
  • Campaign-specific contracts on the rise. As many as 40% of the agencies questioned and 22% of company respondents are choosing to engage celebrities on a campaign-specific basis, rather than a long-term contract. Spend on a campaign-specific social media contract can be significant, with 54% of agency respondents spending anywhere between £10,000 ($15,000) and £100,000 ($150,000). Meanwhile, 45% of company respondents are spending upwards of £10,000 ($15,000) on a campaign-specific contract.
  • Traditional celebrities remain most relevant, but social media talent is on the rise. Film actors are still the most desirable celebrity endorsement. However, 43% of company respondents and 46% of agencies claim social media talent would be most relevant to future projects they have in the pipeline.
  • Social media promotion is top priority. 79% of company respondents and 75% of agencies say they are currently working with celebrities in this context. An impressive 100% of agency respondents say it’s a strategy that is “highly effective” or “quite effective” for them, and 98% of companies agree.
  • Revenue is the fifth measure of ROI for a brand engaging with a celebrity for a social media campaign. Revenue comes after press coverage, web traffic, content sharing, and online mentions.
  • Almost 50% of agencies say budgets will increase in the next 12 months. A sizeable 49% of agencies and 39% of companies say budgets are going to “increase significantly” or “increase moderately” over the next year.

“Findings from the report underscore the shifting celebrity landscape as rising social media talent attach itself to the celebrity endorsement space – changing the rules of engagement as we know it,” said Katharine Plunkett, Managing Director of the Centaur Marketing Portfolio, of which Celebrity Intelligence is a part. “The report confirms that in the next 12 months, we will see increased investments in this space, as more marketers blend the best of what traditional celebrities and social media stars have to offer. I am delighted that Celebrity Intelligence has continued to evolve by providing market-leading tools and insights that enable global organisations to deliver successful celebrity campaigns in the digital age.”

The report marks the next phase in Celebrity Intelligence’s commitment in providing all the insights that drive celebrity marketing forward.

The Future of Celebrity Marketing’ report informs on the current state of celebrity marketing, the opportunities and challenges posed by digital technology, the rise of social influencers and its impact on celebrity culture, the trends and spends for the year ahead and what factors equate to success on celebrity-led campaigns today.


The full report can be read here:

Methodology and Sample
This is the first ‘The Future of Celebrity Marketing’ research report, published by Celebrity Intelligence in association with Econsultancy.

There were 355 marketing specialists who responded to the research request, which took the form of an online survey. Respondents included in-house brand marketers, agencies, consultants and media owners. Detailed breakdowns of the respondent profiles are included in the Appendix section of the report.

About Celebrity Intelligence
Celebrity Intelligence is the industry's most powerful digital resource, designed to assist, improve and transform celebrity engagement strategies. Providing a wealth of data and resources, we help organisations world over, make intelligent decisions about which celebrities to work with, when and why.

Twitter: (UK) @CelebIntelUK (US) @CelebIntelUSA
Tweet the report using the hashtag #CelebMarketing

About Econsultancy
Econsultancy is an international research and training group, focused on helping businesses succeed in digital. Its data and insight, best practice guides, training and events focus on improving organisations’ digital capability, effectiveness and revenue generating potential. Founded in 1999, Econsultancy supports a subscriber base of over 210,000 marketers and businesspeople at the world’s top brands and agencies; it informs their digital strategy and helps them get to grips with the what, the why and the how of all their digital initiatives. Web: Twitter:

Press Contact
Priyanka Dayal
Content Marketing Manager, Celebrity Intelligence
P: +44 20 7970 4670