We all know what a brand is by now. Our previous blog did fairly cover the topic of brands and branding in a decent way. This blog would take one step above that and speak about brand or product placements in movies and TV shows. So, why exactly do brands use these platforms and how effective is it, we’ll find out.
The Big Brand Theory
Be it for 007’s ostentatiously modified Aston Martins or commercially attention-craving “Make My Trip” in Ye Jawaani Hai Deewani, product placements have definitely made their mark in a unique way. Some try to subtly be a part of the narrative, while some desperately try to fit in, regardless of the connection with the storyline. For instance, the 1976 classic movie on India’s White Revolution by Shyam Benegal – Manthan, weaved in the brand story of Amul in a magnificent way. The film was technically produced by nearly 5,00,000 farmers of Gujarat. And you thought crowdfunding films, was a trend started by the millennials?
On the other end of including a brand in the storyline, lies the YRF movie – Mere Dad Ki Maruti. The title itself made the story so obvious that the movie ended being a box office flop. Surprisingly, the movie did perfectly portray the obsession of Indian dads with Maruti cars.
The Desperado Shows
Brands that try to barge their way into TV shows or movies hardly make an impact. The Academy Awards simply call it The Oscars, but in India, we call our film awards as – 64th Vimal Filmfare Awards, powered by JOY & Gaurs, in association with VLCC. The brands want to extract the worth of every single penny they’ve invested in or sponsored for. Well, go right ahead then. Compromising on the brand value is surely a dangerous game and brands these days love to gamble on this. Darr ke aagey jeet hai, they say, and proceed, just like Hrithik Roshan threw this punchline before doing something daredevilry in Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara! But, now, even the TV shows have gotten into the brand game. Be it for cringe-worthy display of cooking oil in daily soaps or irrelevant appearances of Maggi or Maruti Swift in Indian Idol, you cannot look away from these brand placements.
Why do it then?
It’s of course, because of creating brand awareness (as if people have no idea what Maggi is). Quite often, these product or brand placements are used as modern merchandising strategies to target audiences without actually using the traditional medium of advertising. The marketing jargon for this is “Embedded Marketing”, but the audience doesn’t really bother about the technicalities of it though. With today’s generation seeking Easter Eggs in every movie and every series, including a clever, but relevant product or a brand reference is as interesting as producing a movie or a series. Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool is the classic example who breaks the fourth wall and surprises the audience with uncanny references and product placements. But, in India, using the brand name of Zandu Balm in a song, set its sales soaring to 35% in the quarter of September 2010. Product placements do have a creative way to get to us, don’t they?
At 3 Dots Design, we believe that products do have the power to tell their story. It’s the platform or the medium that has to be chosen wisely. A storyteller in a turbulent crowd has no value, but on a stage, the audience will pay to listen to him. At 3 Dots Design, we ensure that our brands find the right platform to share their story and reach the right audience who actually want to hear them. So, next time you see a product or a brand in a movie or a TV show, just think if it really makes sense, or is it just lying crassly like Bourn Vita amidst all research papers in Krrishh!