What does the connection with Eli and Odell say about Dunkin’ Donuts?

What does the connection with Eli and Odell say about Dunkin’ Donuts?


Three things determine the success of using celebrities to promote a brand:

  1. how people feel about the celebrities.
  2. the strength of the link created between the celebrities and the brand.
  3. the meaning of the link. What does the celebrity connection tell people about the brand?

Eli Manning and Odell Beckham are well known and well respected among football fans; much less well known by everybody else.

Manning and Beckham wear t-shirts with the Dunkin’ Donuts’ “DD” logo throughout the ad, and there are no competing logos from the NFL or the Giants, so the link with the brand is strong.

But it’s a mystery what the connection with the sports stars is supposed to tell people about Dunkin’ Donuts.

The spokesperson says that Dunkin’ Donuts is committed to getting every customer’s coffee just right and that Manning and Beckham are at “Comp Commitment” to learn the power of that commitment. Huh? Why explain the company policy? Customers don’t care about Dunkin’s policies, just about how the coffee tastes. Dunkin’ should sell the experience of drinking Dunkin’ Donuts coffee rather than talk about themselves.

Viewers see Manning throw a coffee bean to Beckham, who catches it on the tip his finger. What does that tell people about Dunkin’ Donuts?

So the ad is a couple of well-branded, B-level celebrities, somehow involved in the company’s policy of commitment. The ad does nothing to enhance a potential customer’s expectation of the pleasure of a visit to Dunkin’ Donuts. The ad will get the brand a little visibility, but it’s a wasted opportunity.

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