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New York, NY—Are more luxury consumers swayed by a celebrity brand ambassador or a lesser-known model as the face of the brand?

According to this article in Luxury Daily, either one works, as long as the spokesperson is someone who is perceived as being aligned with the brand’s core values and who is believable in consumers’ minds. A celebrity spokesperson may appeal to aspirational customers and help build the brand’s following, while the lesser-known face may make a product seem more approachable and relatable to the consumer.

Virtually every luxury brand—including jewelry—has used celebrities as brand ambassador. Watches, in particular, are notorious for celebrity alignment, such as Breitling’s relationship with John Travolta. Not only is the actor popular with a variety of age groups and demographics, but also he is a licensed pilot and therefore appropriately aligned with the brand’s image. Likewise, Dior, the famed French fashion house that also makes jewelry and watches, tapped into a series of actresses, both past (Elizabeth Taylor, Marlene Dietrich) and present (Natalie Portman, Penelope Cruz, and Marion Cotillard, above left) who are perceived as icons of modern elegance. Meanwhile, Tiffany & Co., along with Gucci and Prada, prefers lesser-known models to famous celebrities in its current advertising.

Actor John Travolta's real-life pilot's license makes him a legitimate symbol for Breitling's image.

A brand using a celebrity spokesperson may be able to build customers from among the star’s fans—but also risks fallout should the celebrity make a public misstep (one can assume Lindsay Lohan is not being sought for many endorsements). Finally, says the article, the brand’s marketing should not hinge on the celebrity; it needs to be solid on its own with the celebrity as an added bonus.

Photos: Luxury Daily

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