TV personalities, athletes, models, and other famous people to establish or enhance a brand is not a foreign concept anymore. Celebrities have been endorsing since late nineteenth century (Ordering, 1999). This kind of marketing strategy does not only draw attention but attracts action. Companies spend a big part of their budget in the attempt to align the brand with the endorser.
Needless to say, the chosen celebrity for the product or service of the company should be perfect and hit the target market right on the mark. Celebrities may be known for having that power to influence the people into making a decision on what to buy, where to eat, what to wear and a lot more choices. But using this kind of marketing strategy can make or break an entire advertisement. Brands use celebrity endorsers as an effective marketing strategy to establish the credibility of a brand, especially with new products. A celebrity preference of the brand denotes that he/ he is gaining with the brand, hence, the target audience will also benefit.
It will also build a sense of trust from the target audience. Moreover, celebrity endorsements guarantee attention by emerging from the clutter. On that note, it gives the brand a high-degree of recall. Also, a celebrity mass appeal produces interest of the brand among the target audience (Catwalk, 2005). In creating efficient messages, the advertisers consider the celebrity attractiveness (Select, 2003). Celebrity attractiveness does not only connote the physical appearance but also the character, likeability, and similarity to the target market. At times, controversial celebrities are also preferred (Knight, 2010). Consumers will only mind if the actual product has or had a controversial issue.
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This research aims to briefly discuss Kuris Aquinas TV endorsements and how she can have an impact on the brand she’s advertising, the company as a whole and the target market. Moreover, this research aims to find out how, despite the personal controversies she’s had, she still bested other TV endorsers in terms of numbers of endorsements. BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY Celebrity endorsers play a big role in the advertising industry; big names such as John Lloyd Cruz, Sharon Cement, Anne Curtis and Polloi Paschal are among those who are always on the top of the list when it comes to TV Brand Endorsements (Mannequin, 2011). Along with the huge names in the industry is the one hailed as the Philippines Top Brand Endorser for 2009 to 2012, the Queen of Talk, Kuris Aquinas.
Three prerequisites to selecting celebrities: Before signing on celebrities to endorse their brands, companies need to ensure that they meet three basic prerequisites, namely the endorser should be attractive, have a positive image in the society, and e perceived as having the necessary knowledge, although it might be difficult for a celebrity to meet all three prerequisites (Lumberyard’s, 2011). Kuris Aquinas seemed to possess most if not all of these prerequisites despite the negative image that all the issues and controversies she found herself in, had imposed on her. Kristin Barnett Conjuring Aquinas, popularly known as Kuris Aquinas, is one of the most controversial personalities in Philippine TV.
Coming from a highly recognizable clan of politicians, she inevitably draws more light from the show business industry as impaired to other celebrities. She was crowned as the “Queen of Talk” because of her hosting prowess. She hosted different shows such as The Kuris Aquinas Show, The Buzz, Morning Girls with Kuris and Koruna and many more. Tactless as it may seem to some people, but to many she is a fearless host asking her interviewees questions that nobody would dare ask. Aside from being the Queen of Talk, Kuris holds the title Queen of Game Shows as well. Being linked to a number of men whether from the politics, or showbiz industry, being outspoken, and fearless, Kuris has almost always been the center of attention.
From a commercial bakeshop to a beauty product, Kuris Aquinas dominated the Top Endorser list of 2009 to 2012 for having the most Brands being endorsed by a TV Personality (Mannequin, 2011). Kuris Aquinas managed to stay on top of the list and became a desired endorser to most of the companies despite all the issues that sparked in the middle of her success as a TV personality. Following her mother’s death, Kuris made a public service announcement supporting an anti-cancer campaign with some other women endorsers, namely mother and daughter, Pip and Maxine Monsoonal who also lost a loved one who offered from cancer, Master Rapper, Francis Monsoonal. “Kuris has become a pop cultural icon.
The over-all perception is that she is a personality that’s part of our culture, sociological. Kuris has never been afraid to share near interior elite; seen NAS always been transparent,” Internal. Kuris Aquinas made a huge impact to the audience because of her strong personality and straight forward comments towards the people around her. What you see is what you get from her. That kind of trait from her might be a reason why the major brand companies favored her in endorsing their brands rather than some other TV rationalities. “Kaki, I’m not a liar ‘yon Lang ‘yon, what you see is what you get,” “A good conduct clause is when you know how to behave,” (Alamo, 2011) “l think I’m very talented,” Kuris laughed. L mean I feel that massing aka and managing as attract kook. More than anything else, lam Eng Tao an I don’t lie. And did baa that’s the most important thing for an endorser, young Toto aka and you have credibility. (Sadist, 2004) One of the Queen of Talks main priorities is her image as an endorser, and to maintain a good image, she refrains from doing things that might ruin her reputation. Lying is a big no-no for her, since she wanted the people to trust her, her main goal is to tell people the truth, tell them what she really feels. One time in September 23, 2003, Kuris Aquinas appeared to the public emotionally and physically weak after a fight with her actor- ex-boyfriend, Joey Marquee.
This issue was the first time that the public saw Kuris cried on TV because viewers know her with her strong personality and highly-energize actions on TV. Grave threats, grave coercion, less physical injuries and illegal possession of firearms are the cases Kuris filed against Marquee. Along with her conflict with Joey Marquee, another issue came out; Kuris Aquinas admitted that she had STUD which she acquired from Joey Marquee. Two weeks after the incident, Joey Marquee made an apology that made Kuris Aquinas Junk the cases and chose not to talk about the incident again. Two years after her rough breakup with Joey Marquee, Kuris Aquinas married James Yap, star player of Purebloods (now Seaming Coffee Mixers) in the Philippine Basketball Association and a National Team standout.
Their story bloomed when Kuris announced that she is pregnant with James Yap, Jar. (a. K. A Bimbo). But Just like her previous love affairs, this one didn’t last that long either. In 2010, Kuris ended her five-year relationship with her husband after an issue sparked that James is having an affair with a rumored girl in the name of TV personality, Isabel 011. Based on this study, the researchers would like to determine why Kuris Aquinas is still the most favored TV endorser of different companies despite the issues being attached to her name. THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK This research is grounded on three theories which primarily concern the target market of a specific advertisement.
As it is a common goal for advertisers to create, execute and convey a message, the receiver of the message is of high significance. At the end of a days Job, the important question would be “Will the consumers buy it? ” Based on the previous studies regarding the consumer’s behaviors, there are three unintentional doctors that attest the consumer decision when buying. They are enumerated as external influences, internal influences, and the marketing influences in which the advertising, product promotion and pricing are found (Chem. and Lee 2005). The product promotion is where celebrity endorsers come in and advertisers want money who will attract attention and cause action from the target market so a big amount of money, effort and time would not be put to waste.
The Source Attractiveness Theory will guide the researchers in finding out the physical attributes Kuris Aquinas possesses in terms similarity, familiarity and likeability, the Situational Crisis Communication Theory will determine the type of crisis Kuris is involved with, the intensifying factors of the controversies and will determine how Kuris Aquinas manages the threats and crisis while the Meaning Transfer Theory will lead the researchers in answering why companies choose Kuris Aquinas to endorse their products, advocates, or campaigns in terms of demographic and lifestyle types. Source Attractiveness Theory is a psychological research resulted from (McGuire, 1985) study. Source attractiveness model is more related to the physical attributes, such as similarity, familiarity and likeability. These are important initial Judgment of another person at first instance (Ionian, 1991). Advertisers have chosen celebrity endorsers on the basis of their physical attractiveness to gain from the dual effects of celebrity status and physical appeal (Singer, 1983).
Kuris Aquinas, as an effective endorser, went through these things as well. Some advertisers used her beauty to sell the product, it doesn’t matter whether he/she knows something about the product, as long as her beauty is present in the endorsement, the brand she’s trying to market will sell. One product for example is her shampoo commercial. The advertisers noticed her beautiful hair and chose her as an endorser knowing that Kirk’s beautiful hair is not a result of her use of that shampoo brand. There is no doubt that attractive celebrity endorsers enhance attitudes towards advertising and brands, but whether they are able to create repeat purchase intentions is less obvious (Byrne et al, 2003).
Device et al (1986) suggested in their study, higher source attractiveness led to higher verbal and behavioral compliance, in order to examine the relationship between purchase intention and attractiveness. Kale & Homer (1985) mentioned in their study that, purchase intention participants are easily influenced by an attractive celebrity endorser than unattractive celebrity endorser. Another example is her Fabric Conditioner commercial; we all know that given the nature of Kuris Aquinas work, she spends most f her time taping and hosting and so she has very little time to wash her clothes herself. Since she is attractive and she can sell almost everything, the advertisers chose her as the endorser of the brand.
Figure 1 Situational Crisis Communication Theory Model Situational Crisis Communication Theory suggests that crisis managers should match strategic crisis responses to the level of crisis responsibility and reputation threat posed by a crisis. Evaluating the crisis type, crisis history and prior relationship reputation will help crisis managers predict the level of reputation threat of an organization and how that organization’s publics will perceive the crisis and attribute crisis responsibility. This theory will be helpful in determining how Kuris Aquinas manages the threats and crisis, as well as controversies thrown to her during the time where she is also doing some endorsements. Meaning Transfer Theory is also used in this study is based on the effectiveness of the endorser depends on the meaning the celebrity is bringing into the endorsements process and the brand.
Celebrities are full of different meaning reflecting such as demographic (age, gender) and lifestyle types, thus asking it evident that celebrities convey not one but a variety of meaning. The cultural meanings that are connected with the celebrity will be transferred to the endorsed product or brand (Briefly,1995). According to Reardon (1999) the strengths of this model are that it considers celebrity status, class, gender, age, lifestyle and personality. Kuris Aquinas did several advertisements that are connected to her real-life experiences, one of which were series of commercials with her son, Bimbo in a milk product. She also made a public service advertisement (AS) against cancer.
Her mom, the late President Carton Aquinas died due to Cancer, in relation to that, she made a AS pushing women to be injected with an anti-Human Papilla Virus (HP) vaccine to lessen the danger in the lives of the Filipino Women. According to Martin (1996, p. 29), celebrity spokes persons are useful in marketing because they provide a “set of characteristics” that supports consumers in evaluating the presented brand. The Meaning Transfer Theory model (McCracken, 1989) introduced is an appropriate tool to describe the endorsement process that comprises of three stages including culture, endorsement and consumption. This model involves the creation of celebrity image, transfer of meaning from the celebrity to the brand and the third stage is how the brand transfers image onto the consumer (Schlep, 2003).
According to McCracken (1989), in the first stage the celebrity draws meaning from their public persona (I. E. ) the meaning associated with the famous person moves from the endorser to the product or brand. In the endorsement stage, this meaning is transferred from the endorser to the product and the process of creating a product personality takes place, based on the symbolic properties conveyed by the endorser. Figure 2 Meaning Transfer Theory Model At last, in the consumption process, the brand’s meaning is acquired by the consumer. In this stage the consumer’s role in the endorsement process. Then the company decides which celebrity to choose and who possesses the most appropriate similar characteristics in relation to the brand.
Lastly there has to be equivalence or a brand fit between the celebrity and the brand or product. CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK Figure 3 Hybrid Theory of Source Attractiveness, Situational Crisis Communication, and Meaning Transfer Theories Figure 3 Hybrid Theory of Source Attractiveness, Situational Crisis Communication, and Meaning Transfer Theories The three theories of the researchers are combined to form a theory that will support the study. Meaning Transfer Theory incorporated the boxes Acquisition, Endorsement and Consumption. The Source Attractiveness Theory is embedded in the Acquisition stage in which the factors Physical Attributes, Likeability and Familiarity are being related to the endorser, Kuris Aquinas.
In the Endorsement box, the intervening factors are presented namely Crisis History and Reputation. These factors are taken from the Situational Crisis Communication Theory. Also from the Situational Crisis Communication, the Behavioral Intentions is also integrated into the graph which will lead to the formulation of Response Strategy. The Response Strategy is planned for the benefit of the brand itself and Product Consumption. STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM The researchers would like to determine the reasons why Kuris Aquinas emerged as a top TV endorser in the year 2009 to 2012 despite the controversies and issues that she had faced according to Strapless surveys released last 2012 The researchers would also like to determine the following: 1.
What are the Seibel reasons behind Kuris Quoin’s success not Just as a TV Personality but as a leader in terms of the number of TV endorsements made in a year? 2. What are the reasons why the companies choose Kuris Aquinas over others for TV endorsements? 3. What are the controversies that made a huge impact on Kuris Aquinas? (reputation, image) 4. How did these controversies made an impact on the brands Kuris Aquinas endorses? 5. What are the response strategies that were taken/made regarding the controversies by Kuris Aquinas as perceived by industry experts? 6. What kind of impact does Kuris Aquinas make on the brands she endorses? . What doctors do the consumers consider in Kuris Aquinas?