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Are celebrity presenters worth it?

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Popular stars like Jirayu Tangsrisuk, Urassaya Sperbund and Nadech Kugimiya are ready to help you sell your products, but they will likely charge millions to do so. Are they worth the expense?

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Stellar advertising, worth the cost?

Celebrities are being paid ever-increasing fees to promote brands, but are they really worth them?

Pitsinee Jitpleecheep

Heart-throb TV star Jirayu "James" Tangsrisuk has created a new trend in the Thai entertainment industry, making a name for himself almost overnight and securing a myriad of advertising contracts after he starred in only one soap opera.

He also scored a huge 14-million-baht advertising deal, possibly outstripping that of Nadech Kugimiya 

A lucrative promotion deal with AIS has made Jirayu "James" Tangsrisuk the "real thing" in the celebrity world.

But many people wonder whether such expensive advertising is worth it and how big the return on investment is that lures advertisers to splash out such sums.

Although there are no official reports for such returns in Thailand, more companies from various sectors – businesses such as automotive, mobile phones, snacks and beauty clinics – are jumping on the bandwagon and paying presenters top money.

Marketing planners say it is worth using superstars to advertise products, as they  attract customers and help increase sales as well as boost brand image.

Considered a successful tool in advertising, presenters' fees have increased sharply over the years.

While Advanced Info Service inked a 14-million-baht deal with  Jirayu, a star of the TV 3 series "Supap Buruth Jutathep", True Move reportedly paid 7 million baht for another heartthrob, Mr Nadech, as its brand presenter.

The standard rate of 3-5 million baht is paid for popular presenters like Chermarn "Ploy" Boonyasak, Araya A Hargate and Patcharapa "Aum" Chaichueafor one TV commercial, according to sources from event agencies.

Showing up at an event for a product promotion means a celebrity rakes in 300,000-350,000 baht for only 2-4 hours of their time.

"The rate has increased from just 100,000 baht that celebrities charged several years ago," said a source.

"A brief appearance by Chermarn, Araya and Patcharapa may cost you nearly 200,000 baht per time."

Chalit Limpanavech, vice-president of the Thailand Marketing Association, questioned whether employing celebrities for advertising is worth it.

"There is no effective means to prove if the payment is justified. They charge very high and I wonder if it is worthwhile," he said.

But Pollapat Junvimloung, founder of Wuttisak Clinic Intergroup, the operator of Wuttisak Clinic, said he was very happy with the results after the firm employed Jirayu as the company's presenter this year.

"James is a strong magnet to attract customers amid the fierce competition in the beauty clinic business," Mr Pollapat said.

The source said that given fierce market competition, with certain stars in high demand, the fee automatically rises because companies are willing to offer large sums to block others from using the same stars.

Piyawan Leelasompop, vice-president for marketing at Central Department Store Co, said superstars not only help build brand awareness among customers but also draw people to the store during promotion events, boosting spending as well.

"One customer printed out a picture from Araya's Instagram of her with a luxury bag and told our sales representative she wanted one of those," said Ms Piyawan.

Some business operators like Tan Passakornnatee, founder of Ichitan ready-to-drink green tea, prefer to do their own promotion, saving millions of baht in the process.


Some business operators disagree. Tan Passakornnatee, founder of Ichitan ready-to-drink green tea, and Ittipat Kulapongvanich, founder of Tao Kae Noi seaweed snacks, believe they can promote their brands without the help of celebrities.

Mai Charoenpura (left) and Panadda "Boom" Wongpudee

Mr Tan said his company's marketing costs are about 10 times less when not using celebrities. Featuring himself as the presenter for the brand he can get the same successful results and sometimes better than expected.

ICC International Plc, the marketing arm for fashion and beauty products under the Saha Group, has its own method. It joins hands with celebrities to co-develop products under superstars' names, sharing the profits.

ICC has at least five superstars on its roster to produce their own brands, including Mai Charoenpura  for Mai mineral water and Panadda "Boom" Wongpudee for false eyelashes.

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Vocabulary:

appearance (noun): an act of appearing; an act of appearing in public - การปรากฎตัว

awareness : knowing that something exists, or having knowledge or experience of a particular thing - การรับรู้, การทราบ, ความตระหนัก

block : to stop something from being done or from succeeding - ปิด, กีดขวาง

boost (verb): to improve or increase something - ส่งเสริม

brand : a type of product made by a particular company - ตรา, ยี่ห้อ

celebrity : someone who is famous, especially in the entertainment business - คนมีชื่อเสียง

commercial : an advertisement on the radio or on television - โฆษณาทางโทรทัศน์หรือวิทยุ

competition : a situation in which people or organizations compete, i.e., try to be more successful or better than somebody else who is trying to do the same as you - การแข่งขัน

consider : to regard as; to think of as - ถือว่า

deal (noun): a formal agreement, especially in business or politics - ข้อตกลง, การตกลงซื้อขาย, การซื้อขาย

draw : to attract or interest somebody - ดึงดูดความสนใจ

effective : producing the result that was intended - ได้ผลดี

employ : to have someone work or do a job for you and pay them for it - ว่าจ้าง, จ้าง

event (noun): an organised occasion such as a sports competition, party, or exhibition - การแข่งขัน, งาน, งานกสังคม

eyelashes : the short hairs which grow along the edges of the eye - ขนตา

fee : an amount of money that someone pays to be allowed to do something, or in this case, to hire someone - ค่าธรรมเนียม, ค่าจ้าง

fierce : very strong - รุนแรง, ดุเดือด

founder (noun): a person who establishes an institution, business, or organisation - ผู้ก่อตั้ง

heart-throb : a famous man, usually an actor or a singer, that a lot of women find attractive -

image : an opinion that people have about someone or something - ภาพลักษณ์

ink : to sign a document, especially a contract - เซ็น(สัญญา)

jump on the bandwagon (idiom): to join others in doing something that is becoming fashionable because you hope to become popular or successful yourself - เลียนแบบการกระทำที่ประสบความสำเร็จ

justified : showing that there is good reason for something - มีเหตุผลที่ดีพอ

lucrative : earning a lot of money - ที่มีกำไรงาม

lure : to attract someone/something - ล่อใจ, หลอกล่อ, ยั่วยวน

luxury : the best and most expensive of something - ที่หรูหรา 

magnet : someone or something that attracts and interests many people very strongly - สิ่งดึงดูดใจ, สิ่งน่าสนใจ

means : methods; ways - วิธี, วิธีการ

myriad : an extremely large number of something - มากมายมหาศาล, ซึ่งมีจำนวนมหาศาล, ซึ่งนับไม่ถ้วน

operator (noun): a person or company that runs a business - ผู้ดำเนินกิจการทางธุรกิจ, ผู้ประกอบธุรกิจ

outstrip (verb): to become larger, more important, etc. than somebody/something - ทำได้ดีกว่า

overnight : suddenly or quickly, e.g., in one night - ในเวลาอันสั้น, ข้ามคืน,อย่างรวดเร็ว

popular (adj): a situation in which someone or something is liked by many people - เป็นที่นิยม, เป็นที่ชื่นชอบ

presenter : a person who introduces the different sections of a radio or television programme or promotes a product - ผู้นำเสนอ

process : a series of actions that you take in order to achieve a result - แนวทางปฏิบัติ, กระบวน, วิธีการ

profit : money that you make from selling goods and services after all your costs have been paid - กำไร

rake in (verb): to earn a lot of money, especially when it is done easily - กวาด, ได้รับ

rate : an amount of money that is paid or charged - ราคา, อัตรา

reportedly : as reported (often used for showing that you are not certain that something you are reporting is true) - ตามที่รายงาน

return : the amount of profit that you get from something; the amount of money you earn - เงินรายได้

roster (noun): a list of the names of people who are available to do a job, play in a team, etc. - บัญชีรายชื่อ, ทะเบียนรายชื่อ

sector : a group that is part of a larger group - ภาค (ทางเศรษฐกิจหรือสังคม)

secure (verb): to get or achieve something - ได้มา

sharply : quickly and by a large amount - สูงขึ้นอย่างรวดเร็ว

snack : a small meal or amount of food, usually eaten in a hurry - อาหารว่าง, อาหารเบาๆ

soap opera : a story about the lives and problems of a group of people which is broadcast every day or several times a week on television or radio - เรื่องน้ำเน่า

source : a place where information comes from; someone who gives information - แหล่ง

splash out (verb): to spend a lot of money on something - จ่ายเงินเป็นจำนวนมาก

standard : average or normal rather than having special or unusual features - ซึ่งเป็นมาตรฐาน

stellar (adj): connected with the stars - เกี่ยวกับดาว, เป็นดารา,เป็นตัวเอก

sum : an amount of something, especially money - จำนวนเงิน

trend : a gradual change or development that produces a particular result   - ทิศทาง แนวโน้ม

wonder : to think about something because you want to know more facts or details about it - สงสัย

worth : having a value in money, etc - มีค่า, มีมูลค่า

worthwhile : useful, important or good enough to be a suitable reward for the money or time spent or the effort made - คุ้มค่ากับความพยายาม

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