to retrieve a can of Dr. Pepper® to quench his thirst. Heinz Ketchup® was featured in the movie, Scooby Doo. Another popular movie among children, Spy Kids 2, had a character opening a lunch box which included items such as a Big Mac®, french fries, and a CSD with the golden arches of the McDonald’s Corporation prominently displayed. There has also been limited research on the effect of product placement in television or films on consumer behavior. In one study, children were shown amended versions of a brief film clip from a popular movie, half with a prominent branded CSD and half without the branded CSD. Those who had viewed the branded clip selected the branded beverage more frequently after the viewing (Auty and Lewis, 2004).
Product placement in music. The inclusion of branded beverage products into popular songs is emerging as a new type of product placement. Certain media and entertainment companies actively seek brand-spot placements on their CDs and DVDs while a growing number of industry sponsors seek product placements in hip-hop lyrics and music videos (Holt, 2004; Kaikati and Kaikati, 2004).
Product placement in video games and advergames. Product placement is also a growing phenomenon on the Internet. Companies typically retain a product placement agency for an annual fee, then pay additional fees for actual placements, with the cost dependent on whether the product just appears or if the product is actually used and labeled (Mazur, 1996). Video game manufacturers previously paid companies for use of their logos and brands in video games. Now the practice is reversing as video game revenues rival those for movies. It is estimated that industry sponsors will spend $750 million to embed products in electronic games including advergames and video games. Online advergaming revenue (including both traditional advertising and advertising within games) is estimated to increase from $134 million in 2002 to $774 million by 2006 (Fattah and Paul, 2002).
Although it is difficult to assess the impact that advergames (see below) may have on consumers’ brand loyalty, a distinct advantage of embedding products within video games is brand repetition. The average online gamer spends 5 to 7 minutes on an advergaming site, which is an estimated 14 times the amount of time spent watching a television commercial (Fattah and Paul, 2002). Additionally, the nature of the interaction with product brands online compared with a television commercial is very different. An online user is an active receiver of marketing messages, whereas a television viewer may look away or leave a room during a television commercial (Fattah and Paul, 2002; CSPI, 2003). Companies survey consumers to determine positive brand impressions and branded product recall. Product