Movie and Music Video Product Placement (Embedded Marketing)

by on April 19, 2010

in Entertainment

Product Placement - DUKES of HAZARD and WAR OF THE WORLDS

The other day I was tooling around trying to figure something out about the Lady Gaga music video titled Bad Romance.  Instead I came across some articles talking about the product placement in Gaga’s music video.

Bad Romance has several products in-place during the video, some Vodka, a Wii, iPod speakers and even Lady Gaga Heartbeats brand glasses.  In other videos I saw some clearly displayed products. (Did you know that Bad Romance was pulled together by Francis Lawrence, who directed I Am Legend and Constantine)

Folk were stating some opinions about the products in the videos and even questioning who might be watching the video versus what products are being pushed.

To be honest, whatever is pushed on to the viewer isn’t something that they’ve not already been aware of, no matter the age.  But aside from the moral concerns, if you think about it, product placement has been around for ages.  Embedded marketing started in the 19th century in publishing, when Jules Verne was pitched to include transport and shipping companies in his novel, Around the World in Eighty Days.  The first better renown movie product placement was Red Crown gasoline, in the 1919 movie, The Garage.

A good friend of mine, Diane, had started her own product placement company some years ago and had a great career from it, doing very well for herself!  Her company had put Reese’s Pieces into E.T..  Other spots were little items like a bouncing basketball into an X-Men movie…  and things like that.  Where a product’s brand name is obviously apparent in any scene.

Some of the biggest, or latest product placements could be the use of Audi’s in the Iron Man movies as one of the biggest things that comes to mind.  Converse shoes in I, Robot.   In American Idol, can you tell me what prominent soda company is on the side of all the judges cups?  Of late, we’ve got Subway sandwiches and Chuck pairing up!

Product Placement - Tom Welling and Julia Roberts

Anytime you see an identifiable product in any movie or TV series or music video, it’s there by virtue of embedded marketing, or product placement.

There’s the more subtle product placement you don’t always think about…  what movie stars wear when out in public.

Back in November of 2008, Charlize Theron settled a $20 million lawsuit because during 2006 she had worn a Christian Dior watch while under contract for that year to wear Raymond Weil watches.  That must have been one seriously pricey contract, just to wear a watch.

The premise behind this sales tactic is that this kind of advertising has more value than most advertising formats.  In fact, 2/3rds of advertisers use this form of branded entertainment.  In 1997, movie theaters saw 1.2 billion moviegoers.  That’s what makes this form of advertising so lucrative.

The next time you watch your favorite TV show or movie, keep in mind that every time you see an Apple Computer lit logo, or a brand name plainly in sight, just remember, someone paid bucks to get that product in your face.

And the ads that you see during your favorite TV show, well, those ads help your show live on the network, so if possible, consider supporting those advertisers.

I’m not saying I enjoy experiencing TV ads in my face that are way louder than the show, but it’s how the shows are paid for folks.

Food for thought.

[Motion Picture Magic, People, Technorati, Broadcasting Cable]

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