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Tarun Mahani

Curator, TEDx

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The Danger of Celebrity Endorsements of Brands

Paying celebrities to endorse a brand is dangerous territory. This isn’t a new revelation, but brands still shell out massive amounts of money to have the “it” celebrity of the moment appear in ads and say how great the brand is.

The latest celebrity brand endorsement gone wrong story (Lance Armstrong admitting to Oprah Winfrey that he used doping to win all of his Tour de France titles) reminds us once again how risky it is to pay to attach a celebrity name to a brand name.

The list of celebrity endorsements of brands that have gone terribly wrong for the brands is long. Here are a few:

Tiger Woods and multiple brands
Madonna and Pepsi
Kobe Bryant and McDonald’s and Coca-Cola
Michael Vick and Nike
Michael Phelps and Kellogg’s
Kate Moss and Chanel and H&M
O.J. Simpson and Hertz


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  • Mar 17 2013: I am from the West Indies, not well educated because the East Indians from India assisted the British by being the middlle administrators.
    The Canadian Mission helped educate the majority of us to a secondary level in special schools, however the East Indians with the resources managed to use the poor sent their kids to college and duing my time to England.
    Their children returned and were the new masters when the British left and is in control today.
    The African man introduced an easier way to gain higher education in my country, the majority of East Indians grabbed the oppurtuinty.
    Do not get fooled my acedemics, since knowledge gained through the intellect is not always knowledge of true reality.
    In India today you have child labour, and a fully functional caste system steep in disrespect for women. East Indians leaving India tried to introduce the caste system in the country I came from, fortunately some African men and women proved them wrong.
    The low caste Hindus of yesterday and now the multi TT dollar holders today.

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