A basic in sales is: Know your market, Know your product, See a lot of people, Ask them all to buy.
A product logo seen on the screen, large or small, generates sales. A product placed in a movie will get a lot of people to see a product in use by celebrities. Tom McMahon, as usual, has a multiple matrix on product placement and the public good:
An Idea Whose Time Has Come: Strategic Product/Logo Placement To Cover Up The Naughty Bits
Say you’re the Program Director for Spike TV and you need to run a Julie Andrews movie. The Sound of Music is for the chicks, Mary Poppins for the kids, but the 1982 movie S.O.B. would be perfect.
And the movie would now pass, as McMahon suggests, the scrutiny of the Family Research Council…
ET and Reeses Pieces Another movie made in 1982, ET, also had a product placement. When Reeses Pieces were displayed and eaten in the classic movie E.T.:Extra-Terrestrial, sales tripled.
Hollywood says that movies reflect culture and really do not have a pushing or leading effect on behaviors.
This is, of course, nonsense. Very smart people spend a lot of very smart money to influence the public behavior through advertising in entertainment. Because it works.
Movies move our culture. But Hollywood does not often act in the public good — Hollywood should retain Tom McMahon to get it right.
Thank you (foot)notes:
And be sure to visit Tom McMahon’s 4-Block World.
See Snopes on the backstory of why Mars candy said “No” to ET and Hershey got the gig on one of the great marketing stories in Hollywood.
Full Disclosure: Your Business Blogger’s wife, Charmaine is employed by the Family Research Council.