The placement of products in TV shows and movies has been common place in Hollywood productions for a long time. In fact Apple products have made almost a thousand appearances in TV shows in 2011 alone. Because of this spike, one could argue that Apple has set their eyes on Hollywood.
The reason product placement in TV and movies has increased is that more viewers are streaming their entertainment or using a DVR service. This gives them the ability to skip commercials.
Apple not only realizes this, but has made it a clear goal to set TV and Movies ablaze with product placement bearing their logos and devices. The ABC comedy Modern Family not only showed the new iPad, but centered the whole episode on the character’s desire to be one of the first to own one.
But Apple isn’t taking the traditional approach to placing their products in entertainment media. In the past, companies would pay to have their device appear in a show or movie.
The Cupertino tech giant flipped the script, if you will, on this process by offering use of their products for free. In turn they receive free publicity, and the production gets as many iPads, iPhones, or Macbooks as they need. This costs Apple zero dollars in added fees and provides them with massive advertising that would normally cost a company millions.
“Apple won’t pay to have their products featured, but they are more than willing to hand out an endless amount of computers, iPads and iPhones,” said Gavin Polone, producer of HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm. “It’s kind of a graft situation.”
Apple’s product placement goes back to the 1990’s when the PowerMac laptop made an appearance in Mission: Impossible. Now, the latest Mission:Impossible movie featured about eight minutes of Apple products like the iPhone, iPad and Macbook Air. The approximate value of this screen time is $23 million. According to Businessweek, last year Apple products appeared in 40% of the movies that were major box office success stories.
Does seeing characters in your favorite shows using Apple products increase your interest in the brand? It looks as if you won’t be seeing any stars using any Android products in the near future.