Have you ever noticed in film and on television, how branded products make their way into the shot? Whether it’s everyone drinking a certain brand of soda or the latest mobile device used by James Bond… this is no mere coincidence. In fact, some of the broadcast industry’s most iconic moments evolve around a product, such as E.T. and Reese’s Pieces or Superman being thrown through a Marlboro truck during a climactic fight scene. These products, as you may be aware, are not chosen out of the blue – there’s a very well-established publicity relationship behind them.

Product placement, or product integration, is the practice of supplying or embedding products within a TV program or film as a way to promote brands and products. The public relations practice of providing branded products in exchange for sponsorship and media exposure has been used successfully for years. Not only are the products viewed by millions of viewers, they are typically highlighted on websites and through social media before and after the show airs. What’s more, a well-integrated product placement can become part of pop culture providing years of brand exposure.
Since studies reveal that television viewers are more likely to remember the products they see during specific types of programming — rather than on commercials — product placement has become a powerful extension of public relations. After all, the sheer volume of ad messages the average person consumes per day, estimated at more than 5,000 by the New York Times, means competition is fierce for an ever-diminishing consumer attention span.  And, as if to add insult to injury, new home entertainment systems now allow viewers to skip through commercial advertisements all together.
An effective public relations tool, product placement performs the following functions:

  • Achieves prominent audience exposure, visibility and reach
  • Increases brand awareness, definition and recognition
  • Positively impacts purchase behaviors and intentions

Kleber & Associates’ clients have enjoyed tremendous success through a broad array of impressive product placement opportunities we’ve arranged. In Q1 2014 alone, Hallmark Channel product donations by clients Altmans, Hy-Lite and Ronbow to the Home and Family’s Dream Bathroom Makeover with The Carey Brothers were followed by recent placement spots for WoodTrac closets on the DIY Network phenom series, Rev Run’s Renovation. We have worked in association with Rachael Ray and Cooking Channel’s Nadia G’s Bitchin’ Kitchen to create excellent media exposure for clients including Elmira Stove Works.
If you are interested in arranging a product placement for your product or brand, consider these three key tips to maximize the opportunity:
1) Identify the Most Relevant Integration – Distinguish the television channels and stations that are best aligned with your target market. Keep up with seasonal promotional offerings in the broadcast industry trades. Watch the shows and continuously engage with producers, seeking opportunities for ideal product placements. Remember, production schedules typically focus on the next season or shows scheduled at a future date… so, act quickly once you’ve found a good match for your brand.
2) Public Relations – Use media monitoring and public relations software such as TVEyes, Vocus or Cision to identify influencers and media who may provide a unique platform to promote the product placement.
3) Donation Process – Manage the product donation process carefully, preferably engaging a sales representative to deliver the product and to provide installation instructions. Consider providing install assistance and/or special training for key individuals to get the messaging just right.

Kleber & Associates recognizes that product placement has become an integral part of our successful home and building product public relations programs. Admittedly, it is sometimes difficult to measure the ROI on product placement, so our clients often use words like ten-fold, cosmic —you get the picture. Who knows, one day your product might be sitting on a beach with Tom Hanks as his only source of companionship in a blockbuster movie.

Kleber & Associates is an Atlanta-based integrated marketing communications agency serving the home and building products industry for 25 years. Visit the Kleber & Associates website for the latest news and information about marketing for home and building products for consumers, architects, builders, remodelers, designers and manufacturers. Through our marketing, advertising, public relations and digital marketing expertise — we build better brands that build a better home.