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Monday, July 16, 2007

The Influence of Product Placement

We recently added the upgrade package for Direct TV, which includes the DIY channel. Being a DIY kind of guy, I was bordering on the little kid on Christmas morning kind of excited when we got it. My hero Norm Abram and all the guys from This Old House have become my new best friends. I asked Tommy if he wanted to come over for dinner this weekend, but he went to commercial and must have gotten distracted because he never answered me when he came back.

Needless to say, my happiness level just went up a few points and my motivation level has gone up as well. My lovely wife has even started watching with me. Since getting the DIY channel, I've finished the flower box for my wife's flowers to go in and I hung it nicely under the window on our front porch. We also have plans to remodel our living room and even tear out a wall in our basement.

I told my wife I'd need to have a reciprocating saw to take that wall down, and she didn't argue once. Thank you DIY Network! Because of your influence, I get new tools, my wife gets a new living room and our marriage got better.

My real point is that the DIY Network is a perfect example of how television programming can be more of an influence to buy a product than the actual advertisement is. Sure there are all kinds of advertisements during the shows, but I'm motivated to pay attention to the ads based on what is happening in the show. If I just saw Tom Silva take a wall out with a reciprocating saw, then Milwaukee advertises their saw, I am more motivated to watch the ad and then buy that brand than I am to buy whatever brand of toilet paper they advertise.

It makes me wonder if in the next 10 years with DVR's becoming so prevalent and advertisers losing out on the market to present a commercial, if we will begin to see shows actually become commercial free, but loaded with product placements. Perhaps companies such as Lowe's or Home Depot will actually have a television production studio some day where they go from sponsoring to producing a show.

This article by PQ Media talks about the 37% growth in product placement in 2006 and the new media order that has brought about alternative advertising and marketing strategies.

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