The Power of Product Placement

The Power of Product Placement

Don’t you just hate clicking on a video that you want to watch and having to wait those insanely long 6 seconds before you can ‘Skip Ad’?

You’re not alone!

Approximately 90% of us skip and/or ignore ‘pre-roll’ adverts.

That’s why brands are putting their clever energy into product placement.

The power of a discretely placed product in a series or movie can do wonders.

The most recent example is Vans sneakers and Squid Game.

Squid Game Product Placement

Netflix’s most watched show ever (over 111 million views in its first month of airing, beating previous chart topper, Bridgerton, which had 82 million debut month views) reached number one in 90 countries, including the American and British markets.

So, that’s not a bad show to get your products front and centre, gaining massive attention/awareness.

The characters clothing has become the latest must-have.

The white slip-on Vans sneakers worn by Squid Game characters have experienced a monstrous 7,800% rise in sales in the last month.

Non-Vans-branded white slip-ons in general have also seen a 97% rise in search volume.

Powerful product placement indeed.

Other clothes in the series such as red jumpsuits and green tracksuits are gaining similar search increases and are rumoured to be the top look for this year’s best Halloween costumes.

The science behind product placement

And the evidence is there to show why product placement in the best settings is so important to brands.

Research findings suggest that strong, positive placement increase brand memory, brand salience and attitude towards the brand.

Even better, when there is a brand-plot connection, the stronger (more positive) cognitive connection emerges.

When a brand is actually mentioned in the script, it increases online conversations and web traffic.

Maybe it works because it’s an ad you can’t skip.

You are watching the show because you are entertained, so you must have some positive feelings happening in your brain, and the product spoken about or on show, falls into that same brain bucket.

Apple are strategically doubling down on this, that’s for sure.

In over 74 Apple TV shows, it was found that there were 700+ placements of Apple products, piggy backing on the shows’ popularity to boost brand image and mental availability.

Safe to say that if Apple are doing it, then it makes business sense.

The Simpsons and Balenciaga

Going even a step further is the quite extraordinary collaboration between The Simpsons and Balenciaga.

A 10-minute animation that took over a year to produce sees some of the most famous characters in the history of television go all out on a Balenciaga promo.

The brand awareness and positivity stats must be astronomical.

And with 8.5 million views in a matter of days, the marketing peeps at Balenciaga must be busting the cap on the Moet right now. :)

Click the image to watch the Simpsons “advert”.

But when it comes to product placement, it would be remiss of me not to bring Bond into the discussion.

‘No Time to Die’ product placement

All modern James Bond films benefit from tens of millions of dollars in product placement value.

Heineken paid $45 million to shoehorn their green bottle into Skyfall, replacing Bond’s famous tipple, the famous martini.

The latest, No Time To Die, is no exception with multipletop-tier brands vying for screen time in Daniel Craig’s swan song.

Aston Martin for example, are really getting their money’s worth this time.

In Daniel Craig’s first outing as the world’s most famous spy, Casino Royale, there was only 1-minute of screen time for the iconic car brand.

Last time out, SPECTRE had 4-minutes on screen action for Aston Martin.

But No Time To Die has a whopping 5-minutes of product placement for the brand.

That brand saliency, the mental leap, that you make as a viewer for the car most closely connected with Bond is possibly priceless.

This truly shows the power of product placement, considering that Aston Martin have only appeared in 12 of the 25 Bond films - less than half of the franchise!

But it’s the first car manufacturer that everyone thinks of when it comes to Bond, right?

Let me ask you a question though.

What brand of watch does James Bond wear?

Daniel Craig has worn Omega for all of his Bond films.

Surprisingly though, Omega has only been Bond’s brand of choice since the beginning of Pierce Brosnan’s tenure in 1994.

It’s not just Bond wearing Omega in No Time To Die though, with many characters showcasing the wider range.

And with 43 million Youtube views in one month for an Omega/Bond collaboration (check it out in the vid below), clearly the public are rabid for this kind of marketing magic.

It’s hardly surprising that Omega splashes out on this area of their marketing strategy.

When the brand charges $4,800 for a bog standard Seamaster watch, but the No Time To Die James Bond special edition Seamaster retails at an eye-watering $7,900, it seems that margins are there for the taking.

Obviously, consumers are prepared to pay for the right kind of product placement.

The best way to have a great idea is...

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Pete Judo podcast - How to start a career in Behavioural Science (and as a YouTuber)

Pete Judo podcast - How to start a career in Behavioural Science (and as a YouTuber)