Expert reveals why politicians are stripping off for vaccine selfies
The rise of the topless politician! As the French health minister and MP Johnny Mercer copy the Greek PM by stripping off for a vaccine selfie, experts say ‘vain’ move could be ‘trick to boost popularity and public profile’
- French health minister Olivier Veran stripped off to receive vaccine days ago
- Tory MP Johnny Mercer whipped off his shirt to get the jab earlier this week
- Both of the politicians shared their topless photographs on social media
- Comes after Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis went viral with topless vaccine snap
- Branding expert said the ‘vain’ move could be an effort to ‘boost popularity’
- Nick Ede said: ‘Showing of your body has the ability to create the phwoar factor’
Politicians from around the world could be sharing topless photos online as they receive the Covid-19 vaccine in an effort to ‘raise their public profile and boost popularity’, experts have claimed.
The Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, 52, became an overnight social media sensation last month after he stripped off to receive the jab at the Attikon hospital, in Athens.
But rather than rolling up his sleeves or wearing a t-shirt or vest for the occasion, Mr Mitsotakis chose to unbutton his shirt to his naval, revealing his bare chest.
Leaders from across Europe have since taken to copying the move, with former British Army officer and MP Johnny Mercer, 39, and the French health minister Olivier Veran removing their shirts and sharing snaps on social media as they were vaccinated this week.
Branding experts told FEMAIL that while the underlying message of receiving a vaccine was ‘important’, the ‘vain’ move of sharing snaps online could be ‘a trick’ to ‘increase popularity and public profile.’
Politicians from around the world could be sharing topless photographs as they receive the Covid-19 vaccine in an effort to ‘raise their public profile and boost popularity’, experts have claimed (pictured, Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis, 52, went viral after bearing his hairy chest while receiving the second dose of the vaccine at at the Attikon hospital, in Athens, last month)
Brand and popular culture commentator Nick Ede said politicians were most likely sharing the snaps to encourage people to be vaccinated, saying: ‘I think there are two agendas going on here.
‘The most important thing to do if you are in the public eye is to make a good impression and drive interest and bring awareness.
‘Showing that you as a public figure are leading the way with a vaccine shot is an important measure.’
However he added that there was a ‘secondary pr-able moment’ in a politician showing off a toned body and potentially going viral online.
Meanwhile earlier this week French health minister Olivier Veran (pictured) stripped off to receive the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine
He explained: ‘Showing off your body, should it be as toned as the Greek minister, has the ability to create the phwoar factor.
‘Potentially that image can go viral and increase your popularity and public profile.
‘It’s a trick that’s been used on many occasions in the celebrity world to increase interest and popularity and now politicians may be jumping on that bandwagon to show there’s more to them than policies and ill fitting suits.
Meanwhile Andy Barr, CEO for 10 Yetis, a branding and PR agency. explained the move might not work for every politician.
Tory MP Johnny Mercer followed suit earlier this week as he shared a photo of himself topless while receiving the jab online
The MP for Plymouth Moor View explained in a further tweet that he tried getting the jab with his shirt on but ‘simply couldn’t get the sleeves over my muscles’
He said: ‘Whilst a buff former Army Officer such as Mp Jonny Mercer could probably win votes by stripping off, I am not sure that there will be many queueing up to see Boris’s pecs of glory.
‘Even though the underlying message is aimed, quite rightly, at getting more people to line up and have the vaccine, there is also a certain vanity that you could only associate with politicians in deciding to strip off for the publicity shot.’
Mr Mitsotakis attracted global attention when he stripped off to receive the vaccine in Athens last month after choosing to unbutton his shirt to his naval, revealing his bare chest, for the jab.
A photo of the moment went viral, with social media users left feeling hot under the collar.
Branding expert Nick Ede said ‘showing off your body’ could create a ‘phwoar’ moment for politicians which could help boost popularity and public profile (pictured, Veran)
Meanwhile MP Johnny Mercer went on to follow in his footsteps last week when he said he stripped off to receive his Covid-19 jab because he ‘couldn’t get his shirt sleeves over his muscles’.
The MP for Plymouth Moor View was given the injection at Derriford Hospital this morning as part of a coronavirus vaccine trial.
He posted a tweet to thank staff at the hospital, attaching a photo of himself topless while receiving the jab, saying: ‘Rarely do they see such a wimp in these parts when it comes to injections, but the lovely staff at Derriford Hospital made it all as seamless as ever this morning, in the latest round of the Covid-19 vaccine trial we’re doing here in Plymouth’.
In a comment underneath, Mr Mercer further explained: ‘We tried with the shirt on but I simply couldn’t get the sleeves over my muscles, but I thought it was a bit self-indulgent to put that out in public. You know I’m shy.’
Viral sensation: Mr Mitsotakis, a member of Greece’s New Democracy party, has been president since 2016 but is likely to have found new supporters thanks to his bold photo op
Swooning: Social media users were left feeling hot under the collar after Mr Mitsotakis shared the snap online (above)
Politicians mockingly reacted to the image, with Matt Hancock thanking Mr Mercer for ‘playing his part’ and Ruth Davidson simply asking: ‘Would it have killed you to wear a T-shirt?’
And earlier this week French health minister Veran followed suit by removing his shirt to get the vaccine.
Veran was seen on French television with his shirt off while being inoculated at a vaccination centre in the city of Melun near Paris.
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