How To Break Through The Clutter

Frequently, I find myself sitting in a room with a brand manager or agency discussing their “marketing pillars” and many times, if targeting women, entertainment is top of the list. These people are charged with leveraging entertainment platforms, or more daunting yet, creating new entertainment experiences, that will both engage users and align with their brand. This all sounds like fun but with many media options out there, breaking through the clutter is no easy task and delivering an ROI without insurmountable spend can be quite the challenge. 

Here are a few tips brands can leverage to help them break through:

  • Only work with “A-listers.” Start and stay at the top. If you want your brand to be viewed as superior in any form, be it value, quality or experience, then never waiver on the caliber of celebrity, influencer or entertainment partner with whom you align. Target, for example, has been tremendously successful with their limited-edition designer lines because they know that style doesn’t always demand a high price tag and they choose talent that are leading style makers and influencers. 

  • Maintain your brand voice, not letting the power of celebrity overtake your message. Celebrities come and go, but your brand will remain. Aligning with a celebrity ambassador, no matter the amount of time, has long-lasting effects. Ask the brands that supported one-time A-lister Lance Armstrong for example. A brand must know the risks they are taking, and ensuring the brand has its own voice is critical. Piperlime, for example, is very strategic in how they work with celebrity stylists in that they employ numerous personalities that speak to a variety of individuals.In this way they are not tying their brand to one person but instead speak to the tastes of many different women.

  • Make sure the celebrity truly uses and loves your brand. I recently had a conversation with a brand manager in the food space and he told me a story of how a chef he knows was quoted in a magazine about his favorite products, and one happened to be one of his very own products under his brand! On subsequent pages, the same chef was in an ad touting the competitor’s products. As a consumer, are you going to believe the ad or the article?

  • The message must be authentic. Brad Pitt and Chanel. Need I say more?

  • Leverage existing platforms. I can’t say this one enough. Entertainment sites coupled with numerous other platforms outside of online, have little reason to try to reinvent the wheel and create an entirely new experience. Publishers and platforms have built audiences based on their credibility and the experience they deliver the user. Leverage that relationship and build off of it. American Express is doing it right by partnering with Vevo on the “Unstaged” series where they tap into Vevo’s platform and harness their mass audience to showcase unique live performances. 



For a marketer, sifting through the numerous options can be both time consuming and confusing. Make sure that whichever entertainment and pop culture media stars and companies you endorse, that there is truly personal and organic relationship with either and that as a site and a partner, you are supportive and trustworthy. Maintaining the integrity of your brand by being authentic in how you speak to and engage with your consumers is key. They are too smart and can see right through it, otherwise. This will help you break through the clutter.

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