More than most other men’s accessories, including cuff links, ties, wallets and hats, the marketing of watches has always taken place within the framework of celebrity status. From brand ambassadors to sightings of popular watches in the world of cinema, regardless of the context, having a celebrity on board seems to be the lucrative solution.
Although watches can range in price from next to nothing all the way up to seven figures, few products have dominated the world of luxury as much as watches have. While the concept of the time-keeping device was originally born out of something so simple, there is now more meaning attached to which watch you wear on your wrist than ever before.
With online marketplaces like this one, buying your dream watch has never been easier. Of course, by definition, luxury watches still aren’t cheap, but they are now far more accessible than they were. This makes the power of celebrity watch endorsements even more potent, since the target market has expanded. This also allows for the spontaneity involved with taking a fancy to a certain celebrity brand and buying a watch instantly.
The psychology behind using celebrities for watch branding mostly lies in the trust we place in them and the regard we hold them in. When spending so much money on one small item, what better way to convey trust than to associate with a highly revered celebrity? George Clooney’s endorsement of Omega is a great example of this. The respect we have for a certain celebrity is then immediately transferred to the brand as a whole, making it more credible and trustworthy.
This cuts both ways, though. For instance, Tiger Woods was allegedly dropped from a number of lucrative endorsements, including Nike and Tag Heuer, following his marital infidelity scandal. Overnight, the star’s reputation went from being a sporting role model to untrustworthy, and the brands he had sponsorship deals with clearly felt that reflected badly on them.
Remembering A Brand
Celebrity endorsements play a large role in helping us remember a brand. The Swiss luxury watch manufacturer, Tag Heuer, has really transformed its celebrity endorsements into an art. It is one of the few brands that has a frequent changeover of celebrities, as opposed to the likes of Rolex’s long-term relationship with Roger Federer. Tag Heuer also has a tendency to choose world class athletes such as Maria Sharapova, Tom Brady and Christiano Ronaldo – this merges together the celebrity’s brand and the watch brand in our minds and therefore has a long-lasting impact.
Matching the celebrity to the brand correctly is a very important factor in remembering adverts, but funnily enough, mismatches also tend to stick in our minds too. Tag Heuer’s recent choice of brand ambassador Cara Delevingne, caused quite a lot of hype. She is possibly one of the youngest ambassadors to date, and veers away from their usual connection with the sport and film world. This unusual juxtaposition sent waves amongst the fashion industry.
The World Of Cinema
Since the beginning of cinema, watches have been subtly cropping up on screen and have had a far bigger effect than we realize. This method of product placement relies on a similar concept as celebrity endorsements do except has more of a subliminal effect on the audience. Take a look below for some of the best instances of men’s watches in film:
- Pulp Fiction: The Lancet belonging to Butch
- Back to the Future: Marty McFly’s Casio
- James Bond: Sean Connery wearing the Rolex Submariner
- American Psycho: Patrick Bateman’s Rolex
- 2001 Space Odyssey: The Hamilton clock