Heat editor picks Monkey, Aleksandr and John Lewis as top celebrity brands

Cave: picks John Lewis as a brand that has become a celebrity

Cave: picks John Lewis as a brand that has become a celebrity

Lucie Cave, the editor-in-chief of Heat, names her top three brands that have become celebrities, and celebrities who have become brands. She blogs for LIVE@AdvertisingWeek ahead of the Bauer media session at 5pm in the David Lean Room, looking at the converging worlds of celebrities and brands.



The superstar advertising celeb character monkey of ITV Digital and PG Tips fame, as his own Wikipedia entry states, is “notable as one of a small number of advertising characters to eclipse the popularity of the product they advertise and also to be reused to advertise a completely different product”.

He’s so much a part of popular culture that heat has written about him several times in the magazine!

Stef Calcraft from Mother said. “If longevity is a true measure of celebrity status then Monkey is a bonafide star. The only ‘celebrity’ face to move from ‘tech’ and ITV Digital to grocery and PG Tips, while raising over £1M for Comic Relief along the way. Not bad for a bundle of wool and stitching.”

John Lewis

The Christmas ads have become such a phenomenon over the last few years and a huge part of this is down to the John Lewis campaigns. Their ads have almost created a UK Super Bowl type momentum around the  ecember TV breaks and last year’s ‘The Bear & The Hare’ became household names in their own right.

Aleksandr the Meerkat

The Russian aristocratic character Aleksandr has his own catchphrase ‘simples’ and his toys and books are more popular than those of some genuine celebrities. His “autobiography” – “A Simples Life” – generated more pre-orders than that of other books released at the same time including Tony Blair’s memoirs and Cheryl Cole’s autobiography. Bonkers.


The Beckhams

In a venn diagram of celebrity, the hot spot of white noise is when the two celebs collide, and that’s where the Beckhams get their power. While on the surface they are polished to perfection it’s the odd flashes of real humanness, such as Victoria revealing his nickname is ‘goldenballs’, which add to their magic formula.

We want to be like them, to hang out with them and are fascinated by their lives.

Jamie Oliver

Oliver’s become a power brand over the last few years – we’ve bought into his perfect lifestyle (everyday is a sunny barbeque lunch with Jools and the kids!) and now that lifestyle has translated from TV shows and books to food processors and even music festivals. His ‘Food Tube’ channel shows he’s also cannily managing offshoot chef brands.

Joey Essex

The breakout star of TOWIE, with 2.5 million Twitter followers, a perfume, aftershave and numerous brand extensions. He even has his own language with words like ‘reem’, ‘confrontate’ and ‘glumptious’. His lack of awareness about the world has become an endearing feature (it’s actually become a whole TV franchise for ITV2 in Educating Joey Essex) and he is wonderfully shameless about plugging his products.

Joey is a phenomenon with his new ‘code of integrity’ and in this murky converging world of celebrity and brands he is authentic and transparent.

Celebrities are becoming brands, and brands are becoming celebrities

When? Wednesday 5pm Where? David Lean Room

Featuring Lucie Cave,  Joey Essex, psychologist Oliver James, Adam&eveDDB’s James Murphy and Mother Founder Stef Calcraft