Oprah's Appeal


I don't think many would argue that Oprah is one of the most well-known, and influential people on television. It seems like everything that Oprah endorses turns to gold. Dr. Phil's repeated appearances on Oprah's show launched his career by enabling him to start his own show, a book that is used in Oprah's book club will likely hit the top of the New York Times bestseller list (the case of 48 such books), and brands such as Dove have seen great sales increases from segments on Oprah's show. What makes Oprah such an influential person? We could say it is simply because of her show's high ratings and the fact that she is a household name, but I think that would only be part of the story. The influential power of her endorsements is also impacted by their structure, or LACK of structure. Oprah does not participate in structured brand integration deals, and technically does not participate in live commercials for the products in which she endorses. Oprah's endorsements are never scripted, giving her the flexibility and believability of improvisation. When Oprah talks about a product, charity, person, or book it doesn't seem like she is doing an advertisement, Oprah makes it seem as if she whole-heartedly believes in the person, group, or product in which she is endorsing, and that she is speaking about this product because she loves it not because she is getting paid to do so.