How Influencer Marketing and Celebrity Endorsement Differs

Today the marketing world is changing very fast. Marketers are struggling to please their customers while promoting their product. Customers also became very smart and they have their own choice of products nowadays.

Most products do a celebrity endorsement to advertise the products. Long back celebrities were considered as influential people who can change people’s mind and buy the product they promote. But now in this digital era because of the influence of social media channels, this concept works no more. No brand can be successful, just by hiring a celebrity to promote their product. There are some limitations to such kind of promotions also.

Influencer Marketing vs Celebrity Endorsement

To survive in this fast-paced environment, marketers need to be smarter. They have to get rid of all those old strategies and implement a new one. With the invasion of social media, influencer marketing became very popular. Many business brands started to implement influencer marketing to promote their product.

If someone can deliver the right content at the right time on these social media platforms, he can be a superstar overnight. Such people who have potential to engage their followers with their words and make a huge fanbase can be an influencer. Brands are looking for people who can be a good brand promoter. This is where the trend of celebrity endorsement changes and influencer marketing comes.

This article gives you a clear idea about the difference between both terms. Most people use these terms interchangeably which is very wrong. Both concepts are different. We can call influencer as a subject matter expert. Celebrities are just the face of the product nothing much.

So, who can be better when it comes to business promotion; a celebrity or a social media influencer?

Marketers cannot answer this question in a single word. Both have their own advantages. They are now confused and trying their hand on both types of promotion.

Influencer Marketing vs Celebrity Endorsement:

Before discussing more on both concepts, you need to know what is the real difference between these two types of marketing.

How does influencer marketing work?

Influencer marketing uses word-of-mouth to promote a brand on social media. They will create trust in your brands in their post by using pictures and videos of it. If there are so many followers to that influencer, they genuinely follow the person and will at least try the product to know why they recommend it.

How does celebrity endorsement work?

Celebrity endorsement uses popular celebrities as their brand advocates. When their fame is attached to a product, people who follow them will buy the product because of their admiration towards that person

Both strategies are used to influence consumers and make them buy the product. But the way both of them are doing their job is different. Brand should decide which strategy they need to accommodate their product to make more sale.

Comparison between influencer marketing vs celebrity endorsement:

Here are some important differences we can point out in an influencer compared to a celebrity

Influencers are subject matter experts:

Influencers are expert people in their niche. A celebrity may not have any connection with the brand they are promoting. We can consider the advertisement of Justin Bieber promoting Hanes or Salena Gomez promoting Nike or Adidas. The reason why these products work because of their popularity among people not because of their expertise.

At the same time, influencers are people who have a deep knowledge of the niche they are working. Fashion bloggers can be brand promoters and food bloggers can promote restaurants with their influence among their followers

Influencers can create engaging contents:

Influencers have the power to create contents that can engage their customers. They are interacting with their followers and know what they want. While creating contents, influencers keep their audience in mind and create contents that make their audience engaging.

At the same time celebrities are not at all connected with their fans while promoting a brand. The only way to interact with them is through the television or other platforms where their ad comes. So, we can say that this is a one-way communication whereas influencers can have two-way communication with their followers.

Influencers can play different roles:

When it comes to celebrity endorsement they only act or tell the line and someone writes about the product. They don’t have any role in conceiving and creating the advertisement. Brands use celebrity as a messenger to spread words about the brand.

But when we consider influencer marketing, they play a varied role in brand promotion. Influencer themselves create content and spread it among their followers. Based on the brand’s guidelines they create content for brand promotion and is considered as the genuine promotion.

It also brings more credibility to your brand. Influencers like creative freedom and if a brand can offer that freedom to influencers, they will be willing to work more than once with a brand.

Celebrities can improve the reach of a product:

Celebrities have audiences from various geographical areas. They can influence the purchase decision of a large group of people from all around the world. Celebrities from any field can have a lot of followers all around the world because of their fame. Influencers may have popularity in their niche not among another niche. Someone who writes about fashion products cannot promote games. Like this, their follower base is limited to a specific niche and this is not useful to promote the product to a mass audience out there.

But there are some brands which use genuine promotions using celebrities. Jessica Simpson promotes Proactive because that product helped her to reduce her acne. This is a genuine promotion because she promotes her own story without editing it for promotion. Marketers should need to decide where they need to use celebrity endorsement and influence marketing. Both go hand in hand when it comes to product promotion.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Celebrity Endorsement:

Now we can list out the main advantages and disadvantages of celebrity endorsement.

Advantages of Celebrity Endorsement:


Celebrities can influence a wide range of audience with their fame, appearance and other skills. Brands can use these skills to promote the brand and increase their sale

Wide acceptance:

There are millions of people who blindly follow these celebrities. Their global appeal can make brands popular all around the world


Influencer marketing has the potential to reach a lot of audience through social media platforms. Celebrity endorsement is also expanding and finding new ways to reach to their followers through various social media channels other than TV and radio.

Disadvantages of Celebrity Endorsement:

Expensive option:

Celebrity endorsements are very expensive. Businesses have to pay a large amount of money as remuneration every year. Small brands cannot afford this much money and they opt for influencer marketing

The risk is high:

Celebrity endorsement is very risky. Brands have to be extra careful while picking the celebrity because there can be occasions where they misbehave and leave the brand endorsement halfway.

The Pros and Cons of Influencer Marketing:

Pros of Influencer Marketing:

Can create a targeted post:

Influencers have the skill to create a targeted post for a specific audience. While hiring influencers, one thing to make sure is that they should have the skill to convince their people through their post. Also, they break down the location and customize their content for a specific audience

Creative skill:

Influencers will have the skill to create capturing content for their audience. They can create exclusive contents for their audience by doing research on what they want to hear.


Influencers are experts in their industry. So, they do have a deep knowledge of the type of brand they promote, unlike celebrities. Recommendation and advice from an expert vary. Someone who has a deep knowledge about the niche can suggest the product for their followers and it will give more credibility for the product among customers.

Cons of Influencer Marketing:

Still experimenting:

As this is a new area of marketing that is still in its experimental phase. There is no predictability for this type of marketing. Marketers are finding result out of this strategy and this is why they are trusting in it.

Finding the right influencer:

It is a tedious task to find the right influencer for your brand promotion. Influencers can have around 90000 followers in social media. It is very hard to find someone who can genuinely work for your brand and make it successful.

Which strategy brands should endorse celebrity endorsement or influencer marketing?

What do you think after reading all these comparisons?

It is confusing, right! Both have their own advantages and disadvantages. Small business is now preferring influencer marketing because of the cost-effectiveness and ROI they are getting. It is very expensive to hire a celebrity to promote their brand. There are microbloggers available who have around 2000 followers. they are enough for small businesses to promote their business.

We cannot ignore the fact that celebrities have a lot of followers all over the world. They have the power to make people buy the product they endorse because of their fame. So, we can say that celebrity endorsement is a proven strategy to create more business. But we cannot say that they genuinely care for the brand they promote. Celebrities are endorsing brand for money and they promote it as part of their job. Celebrity fans know that they are taking money from these brands to promote it. Now they have become smarter and started to ignore those advertisements.

With the latest developments that happened through social media promotions and campaigns, businesses realized that influencer has the power to promote a brand. They do their work genuinely after using the brands they promote. They want to gain trust from their followers and only promote those brands that genuinely care for their users. So, they create content naturally about what they feel about a product they want to promote. Most followers don’t even know that they are getting paid for promoting brands. Without knowing the fact these followers try the product their influencer recommends and this improves the sale.

But still, brands are spending a lot of money on celebrity endorsement. They are not ready to leave that behind and move forward. When the result is compared, influencer marketing is more economical and successful than celebrity endorsement. But they don’t want to lose their chance of getting some sale from a celebrity endorsement.

Micro and macro influencers:

Micro influencers engage a small group of followers. we can take the example of popular YouTube influencer Jeffree Star. He engages a small group of people. Working with micro influencers can help your brand to be heard by all their followers and to get some real result.

Macro influencers are people with millions of followers. You can consider Kardashian-Jennifer the famous influencer with millions of followers on Instagram and Snapchat. They are non-celebrities with celebrity status. If you want your brand to get a high reach then choose macro influencers. But you may have to pay a large amount to them, to promote your business. But the result won’t be much as expected.

We can say that micro influencers can create engaging contents tailored for their audience than macro influencers and the price is also very less. You can decide which type to choose based on your brand goal. To improve visibility, choose macro influencers and to get more result micro influencers are suitable.


This article gives you an idea of both strategies. Don’t think that influence marketing is best for your business without considering the reach celebrity endorsement can bring. Celebrities have the power to influence people’s buying decision. The type of marketing strategy you can choose depends on your business goal as well as budget.

Influencer marketing is an emerging method that is getting popular among marketers. To generate trust about your product among customers you can try influencer marketing. Consumers are now getting frustrated with advertisement and they started to block those ads.

So, it is very difficult to get their attention to your brand’s advertisement. Create a more personalized advertisement that can create trust in your products or find influencers who can convince them about your product quality.

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