Stealth Advertising

Last Sunday I stumbled across this article in The Age that focused on the ethical issue of celebrity ‘pay for tweets’. For those of you who don’t know what I’m referring to; it’s when a company pays a celebrity to tweet about their product or service. Anything from a good review about a hotel, to a picture of them wearing a brand can and has been used.

Matt Moran Kangaroo Island Tweet

Yes that’s right; your favorite celebrities are making a bit of extra cash by exploiting the fact that you admire and trust them.

The reason marketers are finding secretive celebrity tweet endorsements so appealing is because:

14% of people trust advertising, while 78% of people trust a friend’s recommendation.

As celebrities are part of our lives in so many ways today, it is an effective method for marketers to communicating to large audiences, who trust this medium more than they trust print, TV or radio. People see celebrities as friends.

Many are finding these ‘pay for tweet’ celebrity endorsements an ethical issue that need to be addressed. The main suggestion has been to make the celebrity state when the tweet has been paid for.

The difficulty in controlling an issue such as ‘pay for tweets’ is that it’s almost impossible to differentiate between a celebrity who is actually satisfied with a product or service from a celebrity who has been paid to tweet positive reviews about a product or service.

Tweet

What’s your opinion? Should celebrities have to disclose when a tweet has been paid for OR is it something we should just get used to?

In my opinion it is just another form of advertising that we will eventually learn how to spot and ignore.

It looks as though we will have to get used to seeing it more and more.

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