CELEBRITY
11/07/2012 05:22 pm ET

Celebrities Endorsing Obama: Did They Hurt Or Help?

Celebrities took to Twitter Tuesday night to express their delight that Barack Obama was reelected president of the United States. While he had many more high-profile star endorsements than Mitt Romney, do celebrity endorsements really make a difference?

Top lifestyle and business expert Jen Groover weighed in.

"It all depends on who the celebrity is and how authentic their endorsement is," Groover said. “It bodes well for the politician to align themselves with a celebrity who has already been involved with politics or made politically driven messages. For example, Ben Affleck has participated in politics in the past, so the public will be more apt to believe in his endorsement.”

Peter Shankman, a marketing entrepreneur, said he agrees. “They help, more often that not, because for better or worse, we're a society that likes when famous people tell us how to think. Not everyone, but in general, yes."

Ronn Torossian, CEO of PR agency 5WPR, looked at the question a little differently, but came to the same conclusion. “Would any candidate accept the endorsement of Lindsay Lohan, Tiger Woods or an adult film star? If the answer is no, it's another way you know that, in fact, celebrity endorsements do matter.”

But not everyone agrees. Dr. Robi Ludwig, NYC psychotherapist and TV commentator, argued that the powers celebrities hold don't apply to everyone equally.

“I think for the sophisticated and well-educated individual, what a celebrity thinks about a candidate and who they endorse isn't going to matter that much at all," Ludwig said. "If a fan has a high level of respect for a celebrity and admires them greatly, they might engage in something called modeling. They want to be like the celebrity they admire. They can't in a lot of ways, but they can be like them when it comes to voting like them. The more we want to be like a celebrity, the more inclined we are to mimic or copy their behaviors, for better or for worse."

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