Most brands are happy to get a celebrity endorsement (even when it's fairly incongruous) as long as it raises awareness of the product. And, thanks to Prince Willy the Charming (and his dutiful media army), the profiles of such things as brand New Zealand, Kia Kaha clothing, Monteith's New Zealand lager, over-budget legal buildings, barbecue culture and little spotted kiwis are now most definitely on the rise overseas.
A photo of our dear leader knocking back a Monteith's at the royal barbecue featured on the front page of the New Zealand Herald, and was also carried in other national and international media, including the Daily Mail, which has a readership of five million, and the Daily Star.
As well as showing Monteiths as the favoured tipple, it also showed how awesome New Zealand is for having a barbie instead of an ostentatious feast.
Jo Jalfon, communications manager at DB, says it wasn't a PR set up and it was a nice surprise to see Mr Key and the Prince enjoying a cold one together. And, as Monteith’s is available in the UK, she hopes the photo will further boost the brand’s growing international popularity and awareness. No word whether the delicious slabs of New Zealand-reared beast seen sizzling on the hotplate will see similar overseas growth. But it can't hurt.
New Zealand clothes designers Kia Kaha also received some exposure after Prince William was snapped in one of their shirts by British media. Kia Kaha supplied the clothing after a recommendation from, rather strangely, the Governor-General who's a big fan apparently.
Late last year, a photo of Sarah Palin wearing an Icebreaker top featured on the cover of Newsweek and Icebreaker's Lee Weinstein, who was quick to alert the media about it, says traffic on the Icebreaker website doubled and page views for the Chase Zip jumped 400 percent.