Four Strategies Smart Companies Use to Get the Most Out of Product Integration (Part 1)
Making the commitment to spend some (or all) of your advertising budget on a television product integration can sometimes feel like a gamble. This is especially true for companies who have never done TV before. On the other hand, companies that have spent years including TV in their marketing plans can sometimes fall into a rut when it comes to thinking through their product integrations. Slipping into a routine approach may prevent these companies from getting the most out of their investment.
Smart companies, whether they are first-time integrators or veterans of the TV scene, get the most out of their investment in a product integration by building a collaborative relationship with their production partner and engaging in the process from start to finish. In this three-part series, we’re going to break down four strategies that smart companies use to maximize the effectiveness of their product integration. (We’ve also created a nifty Product Integration Strategy Guide that you can download for free!)
Ready? Here we go!
Strategy #1: Smart Companies Communicate Their Goals and Needs
Be clear from the very beginning about what you want to accomplish through your product integration, and what elements are necessary in order for you to get there.
Product integration is effective because your product is part of a larger story that engages the audience on a more active level than simply watching a commercial.
Keep in mind that your product is playing an important role in the episode, so there are more details and moving pieces involved in creating a cohesive story. The program producers need your help figuring out what message you need them to send the audience, and how to best deliver it within the storyline of that episode.
Having answers to the four questions below can help you communicate what you’re trying to accomplish with your product integration, and what needs should be taken into consideration:
· Why do I want my product or brand on a TV show?
Maybe you want to introduce an all-new product. Maybe your objective is to boost general brand awareness. Or maybe your goal is to prove to the audience why your product is the best of its kind. Whatever your “why” is, make sure to communicate that to the production company.
· Who is the audience am I trying to reach?
This can help you to determine whether there’s a certain series or even a specific episode that would be the best platform for integrating your product.
· Do people need to see my product in action to understand what it does, or am I better off having a TV personality talk about it?
Think about where the “star power” lies in terms of your product integration goals. For some companies, the main purpose of the integration is for the audience to see their product in the hands of a popular TV personality. For others, it’s more important to show their product or brand being used in a practical scenario; in this case, the true “star power” comes from the product itself.
· What specific needs do I have that must be met?
At Brenton Productions, we create several different automotive series, and many of our clients are automotive aftermarket companies. Sometimes a client will have a product that needs to be installed on a certain type of vehicle. As the production company, we need to know this in order to make sure we include it in an episode storyline that uses the type of car needed for the product; we may even end up creating an entire storyline around this vehicle to meet our client’s need! If your product has any specific parameters that need to be factored into the episode content, make sure to communicate that to your production partner.
Making sure you and your production company are on the same page about your goals and needs goes a long way. Knowing the answers to the questions above and sharing them with the production company will allow them to use that information to create a cohesive and compelling storyline integration in order to showcase your brand to a captive audience.
With answers to these questions in hand, you’re well on your way to becoming a product integration expert!