Reverse Product Placement in Advertisements

I’ve found more often than not, companies are going above and beyond with advertising two things at once. If you have ever seen a movie trailer in the past couple years then you know that there is a trend developing. More and more advertisements are not only promoting their product, for example a movie they want you to watch, but companies are allowing outside parties to advertise their products within an advertisement. It may be confusing but essentially companies are trying to entice to buy two things at once while only watching one advertisement. Take this Superman commercial for example:

Now this commercial was released around the time when Warner Brothers was heavily promoting this movie. I remember there was a lot of hype building around this movie and the movie was so heavily advertised that I can remember there was a commercial or trailer for it every time I wanted to watch TV (within that span of two-four weeks before the movie released). This popularity allowed Hardee’s the opportunity to capture an audience that would be more likely to buy from Hardee’s because they are interested in Man of Steel.

This type of advertising solves two problems for companies.

1. Companies can exploit popular movies (to be released soon) to advertise for their products which is more likely to grab a viewers attention because it incorporates something from a popular movie. This allows otherwise boring or played out products to become engaging again.

2. The ad/brand/product (such as Hardee’s burger commercial) can be used to advertise the film (while not necessarily being incorporated into the film), and in return promotional efforts for the film itself won’t reveal every plot point. While one can easily grow tired of these cross-promotional efforts, they have no essential bearing on the film itself. Reverse product placement, then, offers movie companies something that has long been missing: the potential for the actual movie to feel somewhat fresh and surprising when it finally hits screens.

Another example includes the Anchorman 2 movie in a Dodge car commerical:

This trend is growing more and more, and there are countless more examples.

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