Cryptocurrencies have been on the rise, especially in the mainstream as it goes beyond their crypto enthusiasts. The crypto industry has explored various ways to increase crypto adoption with celebrity endorsements like Kim Kardashian’s with EMAX on the rise.
Firms and industries have deliberated on it as an investment option as crypto adoption grows with various utilities. Chante at Crypto Lists explores the effectiveness of celebrity endorsements towards crypto adoption and mainstream acceptance.
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Crypto Projects Turning to Celebrity Endorsements
Celebrities have been at the forefront of several crypto projects, including crypto exchanges, altcoins, and platforms. There are over 10,000 cryptocurrencies, and there seems to be a token launch every other day recently. Most of them have similar utility, be it decentralized finance or facilitating smart contracts. It takes some doing to stand out from the masses and build a dedicated community around the token to drive up its demand and price. Competition within the industry has moved several projects to embrace celebrity endorsements.
Making the Case for Celebrity Endorsements in Crypto
There are successful crypto projects that have seen celebrity endorsements provide a sustainable use case with massive adoption. One of the most popular is Lionel Messi. Crypto has been making headlines in the sports industry with fan tokens and sports NFTs. Earlier in March, Socios announced a $20 million deal with Messi as the platform’s global brand ambassador. Messi is a football icon with over 400 million followers on top of his massive talents on the pitch.
The endorsement deal could not have come at a better time as football players, fans, and enthusiasts prepare for the biggest sports event of the World Cup in Qatar with Crypto.com being its official sponsor. Messi’s deal with Socios in what is to be his last World Cup has driven a surge in the Chiliz token with his followers and the overall football world embracing the Socios platform.
Socios was not the only crypto firm to take advantage of the upcoming World Cup. Bitget also announced a partnership with Messi as its ambassador. The cryptocurrency exchange announced the deal in late October to encourage football fans to get into the world of crypto. Bitget highlighted that this enables fans to explore Web 3 while trading on the exchange.
Investment Support by Celebrities Towards Crypto
Marketing love celebrities as they influence the general population. Celebrities, including Serena Williams and Ashton Kutcher, have more direct involvement in their endorsements. They have taken a chance with crypto technology by investing funds into crypto-related startups and tokens. This backing goes beyond being the face of a crypto project and increases crypto users’ confidence in crypto projects.
Serena Williams invested in Coinbase through her venture capitalist firm, Serena Ventures. Ashton Kutcher also invested in BitPay and Bitgo via his venture capital firm, A-Grade Investments. His other VC firm, Sound Ventures, has invested in Ripple and Robinhood. Other celebrities known to have invested in the industry include Nas, Snoop Dogg, Jared Leto, Jay-Z, and Richard Branson. This type of support toward crypto by celebrities is a rare occurrence. Celebrities risk their money and reputation on these crypto projects but it does have a strong validation argument to encourage crypto adoption through such projects.
Celebrity Endorsements Gone Wrong
Most celebrity endorsements that have had a downward trajectory are linked to superficial marketing. This is where the celebrities partner with crypto projects to use their name. They risk their reputation on projects they have no idea about, which often results in fraud. They do not necessarily believe in the project as they are being paid for their image and naming rights. A classic example is Kim Kardashian’s endorsement of Ethereum Max on her Instagram which resulted in a 200% increase and a nose dive shortly afterward.
Crypto Projects Must Prove Themselves
Several genuine and innovative crypto projects do not necessarily require celebrity endorsements to drive a surge in their use. The crypto industry should focus more on building use cases and platforms that organically attract the general public to want to use them. Crypto has been on the trend and celebrities often want to keep up with the trends. Endorsements allow them to do so while earning without knowing much about the project. Celebrities investing in crypto does not entirely legitimize a project as they also have plenty of money to risk in a volatile industry. Crypto users must evaluate crypto projects on having a serious case before engaging because of such endorsements.