MARKETING MONDAYS: The Most Ridiculous Product Placements In History

wayne's world product placement

[credit provider=”Worst Product Placement” url=”http://worstproductplacement.com/”]

Product placement can be glaring and ridiculous, or it can hover subtly under the radar. Either way, advertisers have paid lots of money for the opportunity to shape your buying decisions.

Here are our favourite ridiculous product placements >
The history of product placement dates back in the late 19th century when print publications started strategically positioning products in photographs. But if you fast forward to today, product placement is everywhere. Here’s how it got there.

  • 1873: Jules Verne becomes the literary hero of the world with his newest book “Around the World in 80 Days.” As it was republished in serial form in newspapers and magazines, travel and shipping companies lobbied to have their names mentioned.
  • 1922: The first paid radio ad airs. It’s a 10-minute presentation on apartments in Jackson Heights, Queens.
  • 1927: A product placement for Hershey’s chocolate appears in Wings, the first movie to win Best Picture.
  • 1930s: Radio shows themselves start getting underwritten by different companies. Companies pay a fee in order to be mentioned on the air. The term “soap opera” is coined in this era because it was so common for radio dramas to be sponsored by consumer goods and soap companies.
  • 1957: More than one-third of television programs are created and controlled by ad agencies. When Camel sponsored Man Against Crime, there were strict rules about the depiction of characters smoking — it had to be glamorous.
  • 1961: The Studebaker cars that made subtle but strong appearances on the famous television show Mr. Ed were purposeful placements by the company.
  • 1964: The idea of brand integration, in which brands or products are included in the plot of a movie, is introduced in the movie Man’s favourite Sport. Rock Hudson plays a man who works at Abercrombie and Fitch, where much of the movie takes place.
  • 1982: Steven Spielberg iconically includes Reese’s Pieces as a plot point in ET: The Extraterrestrial.

[Source: “Handbook of Product Placement in the Mass Media” by Mary-Lou Galician]

And the rest as they say is history. Since the eighties, product placement has become a routine part of most hit movies. Whenever you notice (or don’t) a Nike logo flash onscreen; whatever cars are driven in the movie you are seeing the product of a costly ad deal.

[slideshow]
[slide
permalink=”back-to-the-future-all-i-want-is-a-pepsi-1″
title=”Back to the Future: “All I want is a Pepsi.””
content=”The now-classic movie franchise included Pepsi as being so permanent that it sticks around well into the future.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”demolition-man-now-all-restaurants-are-taco-bell-2″
title=”Demolition Man: “Now all restaurants are Taco Bell.””
content=”How much does it cost to have your brand mentioned a movie in such a way that there aren’t even any competitors?”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”waynes-world-i-will-not-bow-to-any-sponsor-3″
title=”Wayne’s World: “I will not bow to any sponsor.””
content=”One of the best-known product placement scenes in contemporary memory, this movie hilariously included several brand placements, all while saying it would never happen.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”armageddon-i-really-dont-think-the-animal-cracker-qualifies-as-a-cracker-4″
title=”Armageddon: “I really don’t think the Animal Cracker qualifies as a cracker.””
content=”Sex appeal, humour, an Aerosmith soundtrack – this scene has it all.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”i-robot-a-thing-of-beauty-5″
title=”i, Robot: “A thing of beauty.””
content=”Will Smith sure loves his Converse. He’ll fight crime while wearing them.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”smallville-accuvue-to-the-rescue-6″
title=”Smallville: “Accuvue to the rescue.””
content=”It’s subtle, but it’s there.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”casino-royale-bond-receives-text-messages-on-his-sony-ericksson-phone-and-uses-a-vaio-on-a-sailboat-7″
title=”Casino Royale: Bond receives text messages on his Sony Ericksson phone and uses a Vaio on a sailboat.”
content=”Apparently he’s got a licence to shop as well.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”lady-gaga-quantity-is-everything-8″
title=”Lady Gaga: Quantity is everything.”
content=”Just the sheer number of products getting plugged in this music video will blow you away. Each one has been helpfully annotated.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”days-of-our-lives-it-relieves-the-cramps-relieves-the-bloating-9″
title=”Days of Our Lives: “It relieves the cramps. Relieves the bloating.””
content=”It was hard to tell if this was a dramatic scene between two sisters or an infomercial.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”hawaii-five-o-you-dont-believe-me-bing-it-10″
title=”Hawaii Five-O: “You don’t believe me? Bing it.””
content=”When has anyone actually said, ‘Oh, I Bing’d it.'”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”bones-its-called-intelligent-parking-11″
title=”Bones: “It’s called intelligent parking.””
content=”Using Toyota to solve crime.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”transformers-revenge-of-the-fallen-includes-branded-cars-of-course-and-cisco-routers-12″
title=”Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen includes branded cars (of course) and Cisco Routers.”
content=”Simply unbelievable. Michael Bay loves product placement.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-greatest-movie-ever-sold-a-movie-paid-for-entirely-with-ads-and-placement-13″
title=”The Greatest Movie Ever Sold: A movie paid for entirely with ads and placement.”
content=”Morgan Spurlock of Supersize Me fame takes a look into the world of corporate sponsorships and advertising.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”bonus-david-lynch-on-product-placement-14″
title=”BONUS: David Lynch on product placement.”
content=”The enigmatic David Lynch makes himself quite clear when it comes to product placement.”
image=”#!#PLACEHOLDER IMAGE#!#”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”craving-more-funny-ads-15″
title=”Craving more funny ads?”
content=”Click here to check out the top 22 hilariously misplaced ads >
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4d937c74ccd1d53135630000″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[/slideshow]