Can you put a Price on dignity?
10:49 on Fri, 27 Jan 2012 | Social Media | 2 Comments
We all saw it coming; she had been quiet for too long. And this week, Katie Price proved that she’s either short of a few bob or the canniest businesswoman this side of Christmas when she teamed up with Snickers to front a campaign that’s been making headlines ever since.
It all started when Ms. Price’s tweets began focusing on topics that she normally doesn’t choose to mention (she normally sticks to horses, her children and colours she likes.) Updates such as ‘Large scale quantitative easing in 2012 could distort liquidity of Govt. bond market. #justsaying’ had most followers believing @MissKatiePrice had been hacked, or had had some kind of intellectual epiphany. However, later on that day, all was revealed. Price tweeted a picture of herself with the accompanying text: ‘You’re not you when you’re hungry @SnickersUK #hungry #spon’.
My initial reaction to this is one of pity. Has Katie Price just willingly admitted that such topics as the economy are firmly out of her grasp? That’s saddening, for a start. But for a woman best known for her pert, trim figure and exercise videos, her siding with a confectionary giant reeked of desperation for recognition, even if that meant damaging her own brand. Can you imagine Price biting into a Snickers in a hungry spot then declaring it a fine snack? No? Neither can we.
Price’s dubious foray into the realm of Twitter PR has got many experts thinking.
Dorset-based businesswoman and social media aficionado Joanne Dewberry is sure that whilst Price meant well, her stunt failed somewhat. “I think it's an incredibly clever concept but possibly the execution became a bit tacky by using Katie Price,” Joanne explains. “If I were in Snickers Social Media Team, I would have insisted in a much more 'wholesome' role model. I wouldn't want Katie Price associated with my business - I always found it odd that her TV programme was sponsored by Kiddicare.com, and that made me avoid them.”
Writer and social media fan Louie Watts has nothing but praise for Price’s stunt. “In my opinion, Snickers has created a fun and clever campaign. If the celebrities taking part don’t mind showing a different side to themselves, then why not?” he reasons. “I don't think it is causing any harm and it’s created a fair amount of conversation. This has thrown them into the public eye, which is exactly what Snickers want.
“Although some people may see Price’s admission that she has no interest in worldwide affairs as an insult to her intelligence, I think it’s important not to read too deeply into her campaign,” Louie continues. “At the end of the day, the message is more to do with how some people change when they're hungry, which is a basic fact of life that we all can empathise with. It’s as simple as that.”
Is Price a clever businesswoman with an eye for an opportunity, or desperately grabbing at headlines? Joanne thinks that the Katie Price PR machine knows full–well the benefits of well-timed exposure. “When I first saw that she was sponsoring Snickers via Twitter, my initial thought was that she was cash-strapped. However, as we have learnt from Katie Price in the past, she puts a lot of thought into her business transactions - and no doubt she knew that her profile, plus Snickers was a winning formula. They achieved what they set out to do; we’re all talking about both Snickers and Katie Price. Job done.”
So, what is left to be said about the coalition of Katie Price and Snickers? Whatever your personal feelings about Price, there can be no doubt that the campaign in itself is sheer brilliance. Both Snickers and Price have never pretended to be highbrow, so why shouldn’t they exploit their strengths, together? It’s a great creative angle for an online campaign that Snickers and Price knew would go viral, and it’s worked extremely well. As if you needed any more proof, I spotted five people eating a Snickers yesterday. Coincidence? I think not.