Digital product placement coming to Seven

Flamin' hell. Look closely at the products next time you watch Home and Away and Rafters. They may not be real.

Product placement in TV shows is about to change forever after Seven recently signed an exclusive deal with UK digital product placement specialist MirriAd.

MirriAd places products and signage into television shows in the post-production stage, putting products into scenes that were never there at the original shoot.

It opens up all sorts of sponsorship opportunities in post-production.

The partnership will see MirriAd’s technology insert lifelike brand images into shows such as Home and Away and Packed to the Rafters.

MirrAd was set up three years ago by former BBC Ventures director Mark Popkiewicz and appointed former Endemol UK creative chief Peter Bazalgette, who was widely credited with popularising Big Brother and Deal or No Deal. But The Daily Mail also named him as one of the “Ten Worst Britons” for Endemol’s Five show The Farm, in which Rebecca Loos became intimate with a pig.

Seven will be deploying a MirriAd Hub in Sydney.

James Warburton Seven Media Group Chief Sales and Digital Officer, said: “Seven is recognised for its innovation in developing compelling marketing solutions for its clients. Our cross-platform and integration business, SMG Red, continues to be a powerhouse and our agreement with MirriAd allows to build on that success. We’re pleased to be working with MirriAd.”


38 Responses

  1. I read the story with some interest. I just finished reading an excellent book called Buyology – How everything we believe about why we buy is wrong by Martin Lindstrom. It’s a fascinating book looking at how consumers perceive logos, ads, commercials, brands and products. I wonder is this form of subliminal advertising will work for the companies spending millions of dollars with Seven? If you read Chapter 2 on Product placement you might be a little sceptical about this type of advertising using this method! The proof will be in the pudding whether or not companies will benefit or will it be white noise and no one will remember the placements of product! Can anyone remember or recall who the main sponsors were of Australian Idol or XFactor ???? 🙂

  2. Mike – thanks for diagnosing my naivety and reminding me about my forgotten higher level studies. Now, where did I leave my PhD thesis…?! Damn it! It’s never around when I need to refer to it! 😉 I doubt very much that people are watching TV to avoid advertising….unless they’re watching the ABC, of course, which won’t be affected by this latest development.

  3. Pepe it is a bit more complex than what you are suggesting. If we apply your theory then no one would voice their concerns. It’s called having an opinion, which we are all entitled to.

    I don’t watch Home and Away, I hate the programme, yet this digital product placement Pepe has the ability to affect more programmes in the long run so it is an issue that affects us all.

    Carta, everywhere in real life we are bombarded with advertising, and many people watch television as it a form of escapism (ever wondered why programmes are often woefully unrealistic). You also seem a little naive. If you’ve ever studied at a higher level you will realise that this is how conditioning works, you first introduce something (or a concept) on a smaller scale and then when you ask or demand something more from them they will be more inclined to help/purchase. It’s called foot-in-the-door-technique and is very apt in this situation. It’s a way of weaning a person to gain more advantage from them.

  4. Product placement has occurred in movies for decades. Why should TV be any different? Will it really matter to the viewer if the diner has a can of Coke sitting on the counter instead of a non descript milkshake container, or if a billboard advertising Subway appears on the grass in the background as the characters are walking along the path near the beach? It’s not as though Alf is going to suddenly be holding up a can of Red Bull and saying, “Flamin’ hell, kids, you should be drinking this delisious Red Bull, not that fruit juice garbage!” If anything, it will make TV shows more realistic, because products and advertising surround us every day. We’re talking about placement, here, not “The Truman Show” level advertising.

  5. Who cares,.? Take a look at the footy grounds every game.. Anyone remember Orad.? Did the same… No one cared then either,.. If you do not like it, do not watch it.. and if you do not watch it.. then don’t comment…

  6. What surprises me is that people think this kind of advertising works. Maybe it does, I dont know but I Never factor into a buying decision whether I have seen the Rafters using something. I dont care whether John Laws uses a particular brand of oil, and I couldnt give a toss what kind of air conditioning cricketers use. I dont care what kind of anti-virus software motor racing drivers use either. I make buying decisions based on the value of the product (features/benefits/price) at the time i come to buy it, and i feel pretty sure most people do too.
    In other words, advertisers totally waste their money if they are targetting people like me with this kind of advertising.

  7. kuttsywood : “Besides, wouldn’t this be classed as subliminal advertising?”

    Nope. Thanks to the alleged subliminal KFC ad during the 2007 Aria broadcast, the ACMA defined “subliminal” as being 1 or 2 frames (3 or more is not subliminal). And FreeTV Australia’s Code of Practice defines advertising as “[that] which takes the form of superimposed text or visual matter occupying all of the screen during a program” (sect 5.4.2; see also sect 5.5.7).

    So it’s not subliminal because it lasts longer than 2 frames, and it’s not advertising because it doesn’t occupy all of the screen.

    Interestingly, though, it may fall foul of section 1.18 of the Code of Practice, which specifies “Where a licensee receives payment for material that is presented in a program or segment of a program, that material must be distinguishable from other program material, either because it is clearly promoting a product or service, or because of labelling or some other form of differentiation.”

    Current product placement probably passes, because I guess the production company gets the money rather than the broadcast licence holder. I wonder who’ll end up getting the money here? How long will section 1.18 remain unchanged? Or will it also get a pass because it’s ‘superimposed’ (like current advertising popups / banners) rather than “presented in”?

  8. having networks been doing this sort of thing for years with sporting telecasts and superimposing commercial logos and banners over the vision to make it look like it’s ‘real’ stadium advertising? It was only a matter of time before this sort of advertising made its way into general programming.

  9. Wonder how this fits in with advertising laws? IE. No junk food ads at a certain time. There is noting worse than product placement; the last season of the Biggest Loser was the biggest ad I’ve seen. Made me switch off. They need a disclaimer to say they are being paid to eat this yogurt, this margarine, etc.
    At least do it discreetly…

  10. “MirrAd was set up three years ago by former BBC Ventures director Mark Popkiewicz and appointed former Endemol UK creative chief Peter Bazalgette, who was widely credited with popularising Big Brother and Deal or No Deal.”

    thanks. Add them to my Revenge List.

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