The money or the gun

With cinema one of the winning advertising platforms over the last 12 months, advertisers would be smart to consider product placement says Peter Miller.

As a devotee of high art I took myself to see Skyfall. Aside from the mayhem and the beautifully cut suits, I noticed that Macallan Single Malt had replaced the Martini, 007 is back behind the wheel of an Aston Martin but he still loves his Omega Seafarer. That’s seven Bond movies in a row now for the Seafarer, which may be a record.

It’s hard to get accurate numbers on individual sponsorships but the producers accumulated $52 million from brands to help fund the $150 million movie. This business model means they can afford really big explosions. Presumably if they run a bit short of cash they can just sign up another brand, or perhaps a gun brand.

The idea of having a gun brand chip in to fund content is not without precedent. Up until recently, links to actual gun outlets in the US featured in popular war-based video games. They have now been removed from some violent game websites. I was horrified to discover they had been there in the first place.

Investors in media stocks are constantly reviewing the SMI (Standard Media Index) figures to understand which media is doing well in advertising revenue, and specifically which media owners are outperforming the trend. In a desperately flat advertising market, digital and cinema grew strongly in 2012, making product placement in films very attractive to a range of brands.

Smarty pants advertisers are going to be mixing up the big screen with the small screen and the third screen. They are going to mix up online with offline and they are going to hunt you down for as long as 007 is packing a handgun.

By the way, Bond carries a Walther PKK 9mm Short.

Peter Miller is the managing director of Adstream.

This feature first appeared in the tablet edition of Encore. To download click on the links below.



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