Sponsors get on the brand wagon

Ads up: Phil & Amity do the logo motion in The Block: All Stars.MEMO From: Product placement and marketing initiative division, Nine Network. To: The producers, The Block and The Block: All Stars. Subject: Increased product placement strategies.

Good morning all. Before we begin, we’d like to acknowledge the sponsors of this memo, Microsoft Office Works and Canon, while our treats of choice while preparing this document were from Cadbury. If this memo was human and had a driver’s licence, it would drive a Suzuki Swift Sport.

First, congratulations on achieving new highs with The Block: All Stars. Sure, the ratings are down on 2012 and, basically, we’re occasionally cracking the 1 million mark even when My Kitchen Rules is on but, in terms of product placement and leveraged sponsor presence, we’ve never managed to squeeze more clients into a single episode.

When it comes to promoting our commercial partners we are killing it; although if you look at the ratings we’re also killing those.

When the show began in the prehistoric age of product placement (i.e. 2003) we didn’t have much to work with other than Jamie Durie religiously mentioning the ”beefy Toyota RAV4” and visits to a hardware store. A decade on and The Block has its own hardware store on site, with 24-hour branding opportunities. No hammer handle need go bare; no ladder leg should lack a bright sticker.

By the way, you know what else is great? Getting a 30-year mortgage to buy a property whose renovation was rushed for commercial television. This memo’s home lender of choice is the Commonwealth Bank.

We’ve had great success this year with the dressing of our eight mobile advertising displays, which some of you might know better as the contestants. In previous years they’ve been allowed to choose their own clothing, which was wasteful.

This year we have them in branded T-shirts and baseball caps, because the viewing audience would never be suspicious that couples who are constantly talking about bettering their interior designs wouldn’t choose to view a T-shirt with Wattyl or Pacific Blue Design and Construction plastered across it.

The success of the T-shirts and caps has got us thinking. If we had larger mobile advertising displays – that is, fuller-figured contestants – we would have more space for logos on their clothes. We could get two companies on one T-shirt (synergy!). Another option? Branded neck tattoos. What hip homeboy wouldn’t want iiNet inked across their throat?

Stop reading this memo for a moment and think about your health and well-being.

Wouldn’t your life benefit from Swisse, Australia’s No.1 multivitamin? We also need to apply a horizontal approach to marketing, not just vertical.

Recently Dan managed to put a nail from a nail gun through his hand and, while it was first-rate work to make sure the public never saw the brand of nail gun he was using (not all product placements are desired), we really missed out in not being able to associate designated brands with his situation. Where were the close-ups of the medicinal dressing box and the private hospital sign?

Aside from that, let’s just keep the ”casual” placements flowing. Making the contestants find their new complimentary car every week or two courtesy of ”the Suzuki Fairy” is genius, and those positive testimonials as they drive across Sydney to select throw cushions are invaluable. Same with Mark buying Duncan a ”treat” from our friends at McDonald’s when they went shopping.

One last suggestion: Josh and Jenna announce she’s pregnant and we name the baby Wattyl Samsung Densten if it’s a boy, or iSelect Swisse Densten for a girl. Or the other way around.

Keep placing, your pals at the product placement and marketing initiative division.

P.S. We’re always open to fresh concepts, but we need to stamp out loose talk about one initiative that goes beyond the pale. Under no circumstances will Amity be recording another album.

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

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