Product Placement

Successful, unsuccessful and unexpected product placement cases

Product placement has been an advertising tool in which companies pay for a time slot in a movie. Then the characters of the movie appear sometime in the movie with the brand.

Below, there is the 1st product placement done in the US, in Wings movie by Hershey`s chocolate.

Hershey’s chocolate at Wings movie

Many companies, – not all of them – get the same results. Some brands success, others…let’s say they haven’t obtained as successful results as they expected. The usage of product placement can be a great tool for advertisers and also an exceptional support for the movie budget; however, an abuse of it might turn into a double-edged weapon.

One of the last movies released in summer 2014, in which there is a high presence of product placement, is the ticket record seller production, Transformers: Age of Extinction.

Transformers: Age Of Extinction movie poster

Transformers: Age Of Extinction movie poster

There hasn’t been detected ­– by the time this post was written – all the brands listed in the Paramount Pictures production movie, although countless brands were tussling for a spot in the movie, few signed with the Hollywood production to have their ‘glory moment’. So far, I listed 12 of all the brands that appeared: Beats, C’est bon, Bud Light, Yili Shuhua Milk, Tom Ford, Vogue Magazine, Armani, Hong Kong Tourism Board, Victoria’s Secret, Coca-Cola, Nutrilite protein-powder, China Construction Bank, …and the list goes on. Chinese brands have been the ones with more presence.

Armani product placement in Transformers: Age Of Extinction movie

Armani product placement in Transformers: Age Of Extinction movie

The usage of the product placement in this movie though, reaches the highest levels seen on cinema so far, in a way that looks like how many ads is the audience able to handle in an already quite long movie (165 minutes ~ 2 h 45 min.). I experienced the movie and I’m passionate about advertising, but there is an over-presence of product placement in the movie, and when it is, it fills in the screen in a too obvious way that might affect the viewer’s attention.

Another different case is for instance, Reese’s candies in the awarded and famous movie E.T. The candy brand from Hershey’s got an increase of 40% of its sales and an increase of 65% of profits after the release of the movie.

Reese’s in the E.T. movie

Reese’s in the E.T. movie

One of top two most popular cases but with different results are first, Nike in Back to the Future, and second, BMW in Goldeneye 007. The sportswear brand did not capitalize its investment and only released 1,000 pairs of their hyperdunks sneakers featured in the movie. BMW and its Z3 roadster two-seater model, did well and received 9,000 orders when the movie was released. Their US$3,000,000 investment were worthy after having US$240,000,000 sales.

BMW Z3 roadster in Goldeneye 007

BMW Z3 roadster in Goldeneye 007

FedEx and its appearance in the Castaway. Surprisingly, the courier company didn’t pay for the spot, however it’s appearance in the movie unexpectedly increased brand awareness in Europe and Asia where there was insignificant brand recognition.

FedEx in the Castaway movie

FedEx in the Castaway movie

On the other hand, Louis Vuitton wasn’t as happy as the previous advertiser, when The Hangover. Part II movie decided that one of their characters, Zach Galifianakis as Alan Garner, would wear one of their bags for an scene in the movie. Louis Vuitton sued Warner Bross for the unfortunate appearance.

Louis Vuitton in Hangover. Part II

An unexpected high demand of inexistent device is what Tiger Electronics had to handle after the Home Alone 2 movie was released. The gadget didn’t exist by that time but it did in the movie. The brand released a retail version of the Talkboy when they noticed there was a potential market for it.

Talkboy in Home Alone 2

Talkboy in Home Alone 2

Street Marketing action by Kit Kat

JWT Amsterdam makes an outstanding street marketing action in Netherlands

Kit Kat, Have a seat commercial

Kit Kat, the chocolate snacks brand, born in York (England) in 1935, took last September of 2013, an amazing street action that recently has caused a stir.

As a reference and as a brief introduction of the roots of the Nestlè chocolate bars branch, 1935 was the year of it’s birth and was an employee of the Rowntree company, who suggested to develop a take away snack that everyone could bring at work.

Said these and get on track. The “Have a break…have a Kit Kat” brand, took a street action, last September, in the cities of Amsterdam and Utrech (Netherlands), for the special launch of the Android 4.4 version, called KitKat. In a clever move by Kit Kat, the search engine Google, approved a joint in the launch campaign.

Below, the two Kit Kat versions. The first one from Europe and the second one from the United States:

Android 4.4, Kit Kat - EuropeAndroid 4.4, Kit Kat - US

J. Walter Thompson Amsterdam, was the agency in charge of the campaign. With an original idea, they decided to install a sit stuck into the bus shelters and opi’s in the Dutch cities with a signboard over the sit stating: “The person having a break on this seat at 13:07 hrs on 14-09-2013 will win the new Nexus 7 tablet.” The result was, people trying to get their sits and patiently wait. In front of them, many groups of anxious and curious pedestrians were looking for the surprising end. Finally, the patient customers waiting in the seats, get their reward.

Doing a balance of the results of this action, it became a cheap and viral online action, in which consumers were invited to participate, getting involved in the campaign and also getting a fun and friendly perception of Kit Kat.

Probably, one of the top notorious and cheap worldwide campaigns in 2013. Definitely the coolest from Kit Kat this year.

3 Rebranding Case Studies: Cocacola Zero and Diet Coke, aren’t the same?

Most of you -including myself- would be asking the same: Zero and Diet Coke aren’t the same? That’s a big YES. In terms of ingredients they are exactly the same -ok, just one component than don’t even appear in the nutritional chart- BUT their communication is different, that is what differentiates one from the other.

ZeroLightDiet Coke was communicated for those who wanted to enjoy their Coke without having to worry about the fat, women mostly. What happened is that consumer perceived as a ‘girly’ drink and few man were open to order it. Check below the Diet Coke launch commercial.

Here is when Cocacola Zero shows up. Same product. Different naming and communication. It’s a REBRANDING of the Diet Coke. Those man who wanted a low fat Cocacola founded in Zero. The soft drinks brewery just communicates Zero as a healthy option for men. In fact it is the same ingredients.

Diet Coke-Diet Coke Bre

There are as well more examples of rebranding as the cases of the watches Casio and the man bath products of Old Spice.

Casio was mostly use and known years ago as a watch for kids and nerds. Because of the calculator functions and remote control for the TV.

 1994 Casio Armitron Watch Commercials

And now is a watch that has become a fashion accessorize, even for celebrities! And still, is the same product, just a rebranding has been done to it.

casio cool Casio's Shock the World 2010 Featuring Ke$ha Press Conference






Finally, there is Old Spice in our focus. Old Spice shower gels, after shaves and similar products were used by an old target, let’s say senior. Wieden + Kennedy was the agency responsible of the radical change of this brand, as we saw in my lasts posts. With the launch of the new commercials Old Spice is targeting younger consumers, around 25-40 yo. They extended the target age so new potential consumers are a market that they were missing. Just take a look of how was one of their 1950’s commercial until they changed they communication.

Vintage Old Spice Commercial 1957

Volkswagen and “Think Small” by DDB

Think Small is the slogan used to promote the launch of the Volkswagen Beetle in the United States in the 1950s. Doyle Dane and Bernbach Agency most known as DDB was the advertising agency who created this famous claim, that has become an emblem of the brand and was ranked #1 advertising of the 19th century by the prestigious ad publication Advertising Age.

The core message is brief, simple and conveys easily the idea of a good standard car convenient to transport you and park everywhere in the city, breaking with the huge American cars stereotype.

In this campaign, Volkswagen and DDB broke with the rules of advertising in that era using humor to sell a product or service. This is the result.

Chinese -An Uncovered Adventure

After coming back from Shanghai I decided to study Chinese as some of you may know. I know, I’ve been already learning this incredibly complex language for few weeks but so far I can only say in a broken Chinese ‘ni hao’ (hello) and ‘ni hao ma’.

So I decided to practice after class which basically is having language exchange classes. I never done this before, but there is always a first time. So today I will break my language exchange virginity and hopefully it’s not through a creep or an assassin.

American Pie, 1999 Universal Pictures ©

Call the police if you don’t hear back from me by tonight.


Source of Creativity

In all fields, the most competitives know that they have to implement creativity and innovation to stand out of the crowd. To be competitive in creativity it’s first necessary to be trained and promote it in the organization. A well-known case for implement creativity among their employees is the multinational Procter & Gamble.

We know creative and innovative companies in their sectors such as Apple, Nike, Volvo, but, which are the universities where they put in practtice creativity and they teach how to implement it? Personally, I’m passionate for advertising and I have considered the best universities in this field where they teach how to be more creative. If you are interested in creativity I advise you to look up the MBA of GMCA (Global Marketing Communications and Advertising) from Emerson College in Boston, United States. If you like advertising but you would like to focus your career to the Account Management Department, as in my case, I suggest you the prestigious Miami Ad School and its Account Planning Bootcamp, in which you will learn to have a more strategic and planner approach in the advertising field.
If instead you are entering in the world of creativity and you would like to explore it before you take the first step, a book like “The Lateral Thinking” by Edward De Bono can guide you to have the basic notions of creativity.
Stand up and be more creative!


The definition of creativity is the conjunction of two concepts that haven’t been related previously, being the innovation the implementation of creativity.


An example that will allow you to visualize the concept of creativity is the case of the collaboration done by the businesses leaders in their sectors, Nike and Apple. Both combined sport and music with Nike+ and iPod. This is a system that allows you to do an analysis and tracking of your performance, at the same time detects the moments during the journey in which you feel more tired and need an injection of motivation with your favorite song to achieve your objectives

If you are passionate for running and have self-improvement spirit, Nike+ and iPod will be the perfect complement to accomplish your goals.