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Title: Celebrity entrepreneurship: communication effectiveness through perceived involvement

Authors: Erik Hunter, Per Davidsson

Addresses: Jonkoping International Business School,P.O. Box 1026,SE-55111 Jonkoping, Sweden and Brisbane Graduate School of Business, Queensland University of Technology, 2 George Street, Brisbane 4000, Australia. ' Jonkoping International Business School,P.O. Box 1026,SE-55111 Jonkoping, Sweden and Brisbane Graduate School of Business, Queensland University of Technology, 2 George Street, Brisbane 4000, Australia

Abstract: Increasingly, celebrities appear not only as endorsers for products but are apparently involved in entrepreneurial roles in the ventures that market the products they promote. We call this phenomenon Celebrity Entrepreneurship. We hypothesise that celebrity entrepreneurs are more effective communicators than typical celebrity endorsers. Further, we hypothesize that this is because celebrity entrepreneurship leads to higher perceptions of Involvement – an endorser quality hitherto neglected in the marketing communication literature – which in turn affects traditional outcome variables such as Aad and Abr. Two experiments confirm that a) involvement can successfully be operationalised as distinct from variables previously shown to influence communicator effectiveness, b) involvement has a positive effect on Aad and Abr over and above the traditional predictors, and c) celebrity entrepreneurship in experimental manipulations leads to increased perceived involvement.

Keywords: celebrity endorsements; celebrity entrepreneurship; source involvement; source models; celebrities; communication effectiveness; perceived involvement; marketing communication.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2007.014387

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2007 Vol.4 No.5, pp.505 - 527

Available online: 04 Jul 2007 *

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