What Advertisers are Really Doing and Thinking about Branded Entertainment

Marisol Rocha
Member Services, ANA

Product placement has significantly evolved since the world's favorite extraterrestrial was introduced to Reese's Pieces back in 1982. With several new names, including a coined industry term for books and magazines devoted to the topic, and a lot of industry hype, branded entertainment seems to be on the tip of everybody's tongue. As such, the ANA conducted an exclusive survey on advertisers' use of this newly made-over brand communication tool2. The survey results demonstrate the extent to which advertisers are really leveraging this quasi new kid on the media mix block.

SETTING THE STAGE

Product placement has been used as a marketing tactic for more than 100 years, particularly in films. However, its role in television has only started to gain momentum during the last five years3. PQ Media, a media research company in Stamford, Connecticut, released a report in late March that indicated product placement spending increased 30.5% to $3.46 billion in 2004, with a 16.3% annualized growth rate since 1999. These strong growth rates were driven primarily by the television segment. Television product placements increased 46.4% to $1.88 billion in 2004, experiencing a 21.5% annualized growth rate since 1999.