Product Placement On TV. Why It Matters and How It Affects You

Advertisement is everywhere. Wherever you look, you can find a brand-name promoting itself, and a very postmodern way of influencing people’s next buy when they go to the store is product placement.

Advertisement is everywhere. Wherever you look, you can find a brand-name promoting itself, and a very postmodern way of influencing people’s next buy when they go to the store is product placement. This is a marketing tactic that you may have seen countless times but may not know the purpose of it or even if it’s a type of promotion.

Whenever you watch a movie or television program and see the actor/actress drinking a can of Coca-Cola or another famous beverage in a clear view of the camera, that is just one of many examples of product placement. If you wish to know more about how this works and why it’s so important in show business, continue reading and we’ll touch upon the essence of product placement in TV shows.

Product placement is quite random if you see it on TV or in a movie. It just appears and you recognize the brand right away. This marketing tactic has been used for decades in Hollywood and it’s now trickled down to day-time tv. If you see family shows like a cooking segment of The Balancing Act, you might see the people on the screen using a specific condiment or ingredient. With people watching this, companies then hope you’ll go to your trusted convenience store and buy said product.

How It Works

Another term for product placement is embedded marketing; it’s all subtle advertising. It’s not in your face, but you know it’s there. Big-name brands pay a lot of money to have their product on a popular tv show; oftentimes, paying thousands or even millions to have their product briefly flashed on screens being viewed by thousands of people.

If you’re not a Hollywood production, there are other ways to get big-name brands embedded in your show. This method is much harder and requires more dedication in time. The brand-name has to correlate with the target audience watching the show; you wouldn’t drive gear-head muscle cars with flames coming out of the exhaust onto a show mostly viewed by suburban audiences, would you?

The target audience is key to the partnership between you and the brand-name you’re going into business with. It has to be symbiotic. Before anyone commits to a deal or partnership, it’s important to make a contract, getting the terms and conditions signed off on. Always get it in writing, this way a company can’t back out after you’ve put in all the work to make it happen.

This happens more than you might think; the sponsoring company might find out they don’t have the budget to embed their product or they have a change of heart. If you’ve signed a contract, they can’t back out.

Why It Matters

Product placement in TV shows really matters for those on all fronts.

If you’re part of the show’s production team, you have many product placement examples to work with to properly embed a product but not have it seem so obvious. This placement might impact the masses or not. Take athletic shoes, once kids see these shoes on live games, then on tv or movies, they want a pair now. Michael Jordan has made more money selling his shoes than actually playing basketball, which has been proven by the large spike in his net worth long after he has retired from the NBA.

In terms of the company paying for the placement spot in a movie or tv show like The Balancing Act, your product will be seen by the masses and could impact your sales greatly. If everything goes well with the show’s production with your product, you could see your investment greatly payoff and possibly increase your profits if the audience members liked what they saw from your product.

Now, if you’re the person in the audience, both if you’re in the comfort of your own home or in a movie theater, you have many different pieces of advertisements thrown at you. Pre-screening ads and commercials will be flashed before your eyes showing how better your life can be by drinking a specific soda or driving a new car.

This may or may not influence your next buy, but for some it does. Materialism is big business, especially in America. Product placement in TV shows is subtle and in the background; you might see it, recognize it, return your focus back to the show or you might be watching a movie and the action star jumps into an exotic car and goes flying out a window of a skyscraper, sticking the landing. You might want that car now. That’s how it works, and that’s why it matters.

Embedded marketing is made specifically for you. If you see a new product that you like on tv, you’ve just witnessed one of many examples of product placement. They’re found in all mediums, movies and most television shows like The Balancing Act. It’s capitalisms special ingredient; you’re familiar with the taste but you just can’t put your finger on what it is.

This content is sponsored by Anupama Niranjana.

Photo: Shutterstock