DusseldorfAldi sells wine by Günther Jauch and home accessories by Wolfgang Joop. Lidl lures with jeans and tops by Heidi Klum. And Penny has secured Nena as a brand ambassador. More and more often Germany's discounters rely on the attraction of celebrities in their advertising.
"Discounters want to enhance their image," says marketing expert Martin Fassnacht from the WHU business school in Düsseldorf, explaining the strategy of the retail chains. The certainly not very cheap cooperation with Klum, Jauch or Joop enables Aldi, Lidl and Co. to address particularly attractive target groups – such as high earners or young families.
The latest example of the close bond between celebrities and discounters: Aldi has been selling 15 organic products from the natural food manufacturer Schneekoppe, from linseed oil to organic muesli, since Thursday. The special here: Schneekoppe belongs since 2018 the ex-footballer Philipp Lahm.
And the former football world champion will also act as brand ambassador for Aldi. "Aldi kills two birds with one stone. The discount store benefits from the good image of Philipp Lahm, and at the same time he can strengthen his organic competence with the brand Schneekoppe, "says Fassnacht.
Schneekoppe itself can use the tailwind through the inclusion in the Aldi assortment well. Founded in 1927, the company has had a difficult time and, despite its well-known name and prominent owner, is still in the process of regaining its footing.
Significantly more restrained than the discount stores in dealing with celebrities as an advertising medium are the major German supermarket chains Edeka and Rewe. An Edeka spokesman emphasized that the company "rarely uses celebrities in advertising". More important for the company is the brand campaign "We love food", which focuses on self-employed Edeka merchants. Although Rewe has the footballer Thomas Müller as a brand ambassador for many years. But the number of his performances is limited.
For trade experts Fassnacht, the reluctance of Edeka and Rewe makes sense. "The big supermarket chains are putting much less emphasis on the celebrity factor than the discount stores. They do not really need the associated image transfer, because their quality image is already very pronounced, "he says.
Another point is that the search for the ideal advertising partner is not so easy. "Find a celebrity who covers the spectrum between 14- and 59-year-olds and who is not afraid of scandals," a Rewe spokesman describes the problem.
However, it is not said that the discounters' love for the celebrities will last forever. On the contrary, the retail giants are now often unfaithful to the well-known TV and sports stars and are testing the collaboration with the new stars of the Internet economy: the influencers with their countless followers on Instagram or Youtube.
For example, Aldi Süd launched a sports collection with blogger Sophia Thiel this spring. And Lidl also decided to collaborate with the influencers DominoKati, Patrizia Palme, Shanti Joan Tan and Valentina Pahde this spring for the spring collection of his fashion brand Esmara after working with Heidi Klum.
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