Technology can analyse value of product placement on popular TV shows

Friday February 19, 2010

Experts have developed a system of analysing the effectiveness of product placement in TV favourites such as Coronation Street, Emmerdale and Big Brother.
The technology, developed by Margaux Matrix Ltd, is commonly used to measure brand exposure within sports broadcasts, but can also be applied to the analysis of the appearance of consumer products in television programmes.

This comes at a time when the UK Government has announced that it is to allow commercial broadcasters to generate much-needed income through product placement – thought to be worth be in the region of £150M a year.

This could mean that shows such as Coronation Street could soon be plugging Nescafe coffee in Devs Shop; Pukka Pies in Roys Rolls but not Carlsberg in the Rovers Return under current proposals.

Margaux Matrix analysed ITVs flagship soap, Coronation Street over the week in February in which covered the death of character Jo McIntyre. As well as detecting all branding that appeared, they also assessed potential product placement opportunities in the show.
Despite the producers efforts to ensure no brands are visible, analysts spotted half a dozen genuine brands in the show, most notably close-ups of Joe’s Nokia mobile phone clearly connected to O2.

However, it is the figures for properties that could have contained branding that will be of particular interest to broadcasters and advertisers as a result of changes in product placement rules.

Consumer products like cereal boxes, drinks cans and toiletries appeared for a total of over three minutes during the episodes covered, which Margaux Matrix calculates to have had a total value of £330,000 to advertisers.

In addition, many scenes on the programme take place within the Streets retail premises Devs Corner Shop, Audreys Salon and the betting shop were featured in this week, whilst scarcely an episode goes by without a visit to the Rovers Return. The company calculates that posters and point of sale items were worth an average £230,000 across the five episodes of the week.

Margaux Matrix has also assessed that the potential to advertise alcohol brands in the programme would have a potential advertising value of £181,000 a week or £9M a year. Under the proposed changes this is potential revenue that cannot be exploited.

Our analysis system has been used extensively on programming from other countries where paid-for placement is allowed, giving the company extensive experience in this new area for UK broadcasting, said James Gibson, Sales Director Margaux Matrix.

It is useful for both the programme makers and the clients to make value judgements based on the actual exposure for brands monitored in the programmes. Placement is not new to UK TV but paying for it directly to the broadcaster is and therefore accurate measurement is essential which is what Margaux Matrixs process provides.

For further information contact Carol Jenkins on 07786132375 or 01296 338283
For more information on Margaux Matrix go to: www.margaux-matrix.com