By Dari Mullins, Account Manager

As I watched my beloved (and often underrated) Carolina Panthers devour the Arizona Cardinals in the NFC Championship game on Sunday, I was struck by the increased frequency that our quarterback, Cam Newton, appeared in as a spokesperson for several different brands.

Cam has always been involved in several advertising campaigns, but as his success and popularity have risen, so has the demand for his presence among brands. As a person in the advertising industry, this development got me pondering several struggles that come with having a spokesperson.

  • They Become Your Brand

When you choose a spokesperson, their traits and persona transfer to your brand and/or product. With Cam, his energy and smile captivate the audience and draw people in. If you have a product or brand that fits his fans and football fans in general, such as UnderArmour, then he is a perfect fit. When deciding on a spokesperson, it’s crucial to think about the traits you want to emphasize and look for someone that embodies those traits.

  • They Can Polarize Your Audience

Everyone has an opinion, and not everyone will like your spokesperson–some people may actually hate them! Many people love the energy and celebration that Cam displays on the football field. On the flip side of that, some see his antics as cocky and arrogant. So, remember to look at all sides of your potential spokesperson and be prepared for others to hate the very traits you love about that person.

  • Their Mistakes Can Cost You

Jared, from Subway, cost the company millions when he was arrested and found guilty of child pornography. Having a larger than life spokesperson is a gamble, and companies need to have a crisis plan in place just in case the spokesperson loses credibility in the public eye. With that crisis plan, some funds need to be allotted for any PR your company might need as a result of the crisis. So, when considering using a spokesperson, be sure to look at every angle.

On a personal note, as a long-time Panther fan and season ticket holder for 3 years, I am ecstatic that my Boys in Blue are going to Super Bowl 50. I love seeing Panther content all over social media, and I hope many additional spokespeople come from the NFC Championship team! Keep Pounding!!!