Bud Light Platinum joins the rush to celeb client creative directors with Justin Timberlake deal

Brand owners seem to be becoming more and more like lemmings these days (they always were, of course) and the latest trend is to make the star of your ads (or just somebody famous) your ‘creative director.’

These bods used to be called ‘brand ambassadors’ but why not upgrade that to creative director if you think the aforementioned celeb is going to sprinkle a little more stardust on your product?

The latest is Justin Timberlake who’s fronting for Bud Light Platinum, seen in this version of ‘Suit and Tie’ which featured at last night’s Grammys.

Quite what Justin is going to add to the brew in question apart from warbling in ads is open to debate but he follows hard on the heels of Beyonce for Pepsi and Alicia Keys, bizarrely, for BlackBerry.

Maybe it makes the CEO feel like a star. Here’s BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heims in a toe-curling presentation duet with Ms Keys (or Mrs Keys as he calls her).

It’s also an interesting spin on the soubriquet creative director. This was invented by ad agencies of course, who also redefined ‘visualisers’ as ‘art directors’ although they usually didn’t (and don’t) direct anything much apart from their pencils or keyboards.

Are clients saying that creative directors are just a bit of decorative fluff?

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About Stephen Foster

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Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.