How Charlie Sheen Will Be Matched With Brands for Twitter Endorsements
Charlie Sheen last week inked a deal with Ad.ly, a Los Angeles-based company that specializes in celebrity endorsements on Twitter. So far, the company hasn't yet paired the actor with a brand.
"We're just trying to let the dust settle and field the inquiries," CEO Arnie Gullov-Singh told the Wall Street Journal. "The biggest problem we're having now is figuring out what it's worth. Everything he posts turns into a trending topic."
But with Sheen potentially earning as much as $1 million a year from Twitter endorsements, how exactly will Ad.ly go about matching him up with a brand or brands?
According to Gullov-Singh, Ad.ly works with the celebrity to get a feel for his or her interests and find brands that make the most sense.
Ad.ly also writes the actual tweets.
"When we first started the company, we let the advertisers write the endorsements," Gullov-Singh said. "But we found that advertisers are good at writing sales copy. They're not good at writing organic tweets in different celebrity's voices."
A typical for-pay Tweet looks something like this one from Kourtney Kardashian: "If only all vacations were this exciting and included Johnny Depp! Check out the trailer for The Tourist."
The Twitter-endorsement deals are often carried out quickly -- much faster than traditional endorsement deals, which could take many months to finalize. There also is a relatively low entry cost for markets.
Additionally, brands often go with more than one celebrity tweeter, unlike traditional campaigns, which tend to employ one celebrity spokesperson.
"From the brand side, we're saying, don't pick one celebrity, pick 10," Gullov-Singh said. "Don't start off with $2 million. Start with $50,000 or $100,000. Don't run a campaign for six to 12 months; run it for one to 60 days. At the simplest level, we're reducing that risk for both parties."
Gullov-Singh -- whose company roster also includes Snoop Dogg, 50 Cent, Kevin Pollack, Lamar Odom and Mike Tyson -- brushed off concerns that an endorsement from the scandal-plagued Sheen could actually turn off consumers. It also helps that Sheen has nearly 2 million Twitter followers reading his every tweet.
"Not every brand wants to do a celebrity endorsement," Gullov-Singh said. "But there are plenty of top brands who jump at the chance to go big, be controversial."