Interactive Product Placement in Digital Music Video and their Placement Recall and Recognition Effects
Product placement dates back to the first decades of cinema. More recently, it has been popularised by the success of the strategy movies such as ET where Elliot uses Reese’s Pieces candies to lure ET. The product features for about three minutes and Reese’s sees a 65% increase in sales following the success of the movie.
If that doesn’t sound like news, today viewers’ role is changing too. From being a passive receiver of the advertising message, the viewer has turned into a communicator. You don’t just watch – you click, you learn, you choose, you buy, you share. This form of interactive product placement is already being employed by US companies to promote brand awareness but there are few studies that show what impact it has on brands and what factors determine that impact, if any. That is the gap that this new research at DCU Business School aims to fill.
So what exactly is interactive product placement? It is the paid inclusion of products or brand identifiers on media such as digital music videos and videogames. Thanks to interactivity, you can connect with placed brands and products by clicking on hotlinks in the video. That content can be anything you see: an artist, a place, or a product. When you click, additional information is displayed within and/or alongside the video without interrupting the video. Unlike traditional television advertising and indeed pre- and post-roll advertising on YouTube, your enjoyment of the video is not interrupted. For example, if you are watching The Breakeven video by The Script, you are exposed to 37 brands and products that vary from fashion and accessories to electronics and cars. It’s up to you what you will click on. Do you want to learn more about Danny the singer or do you just envy his jacket? You can now get this extra information and buy the jacket or one similar.
Our research explores the effect of interactive product placement in digital music videos on brand recall and recognition. The experiment consists on testing an interactive music video and a “traditional” music video. The videos are presented to two groups extracted from a 200 sample, both being monitored with human-computer interaction software (an action tracker that allows the option to keep a record of the “clicks”). After watching the video, participants answer a questionnaire that measures the elements recognized by academics as having an impact on how users perceive placements.
Preliminary results have shown that recall is enhanced by interactive product placement. But there are many more questions that need to be answered. For example, do mood, involvement and skepticism affect how you react to, recall and recognise an interactive placement? And what about how placement modality and the brand information presented influence it?
Interactivity in music videos brings together all the items that viewers may be interested at looking at or buying. And it does it all without interrupting your viewing experience. Forget about passive viewing – now you can immerse yourself in the digital world, and extend it to your daily life! And all the power lies in a click.
Artemisa Jaramillo graduated from UDLAP (Mexico) with a BSc in Business Administration. She holds an MSc in International Management from DCU Business School where she is currently completing her PhD under the supervision of Dr Theo Lynn and Prof. Darach Turley. She lectures in marketing at DCU and PNU (Riyadh) and is the recipient of a DCU Business School PhD Scholarship for her work on interactive product placement.