The name is Bond, James Bond. And he has a license to kill. That is, as long as he has downed his shaken not stirred Smirnoff martini before using his remarkable Omega watch to fend off terrorists in his Brioni suit, before speeding off in his Aston Martin. Saving the world every other day, surrounded by a number of the world’s most expensive brands and taking on many an attractive conquest is just another day for the swaggering British agent. A swagger, it seems that advertisers can’t stop throwing money at.
Product placement is playing an increasingly significant role in big Hollywood films. So much so that in the most recent James Bond film, Spectre, there were 17 major brands on screen. A few select brands take centre stage in Bond films, with the Aston Martin being the car of choice and the Omega watch, being something which helps him outsmart villains .
The time has come Mr Bond
Measuring the impact these brands have on the viewer is serious business. Jean Claude Monachon, Omega Vice President and Head of Product Development said that everybody wants to be Bond “he’s sexy, he has the strength, he’s running fast, he’s special, all the ladies love him”. This, he believes, sits well with the Omega brand. In fact Omega invests as much as 25-30% of its marketing budget on brand ambassadors, focusing most heavily on Bond films as they have seen a “very direct impact on sales” when the films have been in the cinemas.
According to the Omega site: “OMEGA and 007 are appreciated for their fashion flair, adventurous spirit and reliability – they complement each other perfectly.” And with watches flying off the shelves with the release of every new Bond film, and at $9,000 a piece, it looks like Omega have found their man of influence.
Bonding with James
With so many well-known and expensive brands believing in the Bond franchise and throwing millions of dollars in advertising to be featured in the films, they are putting a lot of trust in the films ability to tap into a very loyal fan base to help them sell their products. Along with the movie product placement spots, the current Bond, Daniel Craig, also serves as a brand ambassador for a number of these brands, appearing in print and other ads, which helps build each brand’s association with Bond and build their exposure at the same time. On top of this, Daniel brings a similar “air” through his off-screen persona, so when people see him, they may recall the brands associated with Bond.
This can be looked at in terms of the Elaboration likelihood model (ELM) of persuasion. This model is a dual process theory, which suggests that there are two ways in which advertising can influence a recipient: through a central and peripheral route. The basic idea is that when someone is presented with information, some level of “elaboration” occurs. For example: in a Bond movie the viewer can be influenced centrally or more consciously, where they listen carefully and are more motivated or more easily persuaded by what they are experiencing. If they believe the source is reliable and convincing, they will more than likely be more receptive to a change in attitude towards the product. Whereas, a more peripheral recipient is more likely to be influenced by surface characteristics, like seeing Daniel Craig in a fashion magazine wearing a flashy watch – someone who is less engaged or unaware of the brand.
Do you expect me to talk? No, Mr Bond…
Much like remembering the ending to a movie quote the sleeper effect is a theory, which suggests that as time passes, a message a user may have received, but may have forgotten left hidden in the back of their memory, can resurface and increase in persuasiveness under the right circumstances. For example: if a suave actor who plays Bond turns up to an event in a fancy watch, a part of a recipient’s brain may cue a memory (a discounting cue) where they realise they know the brand of watch and then begin to associate it to the character Bond.
Despite mixed reviews, the most recent James Bond film, Spectre, managed to become the second highest grossing Bond film in the franchise pulling just under $900 million USD. And, with many brands fighting for advertising space across multiple channels, it is clear that being part of this franchise is highly desirable.
When a loyal fan walks into a James Bond film, they are expecting an action packed blockbuster, with a classy and witty lead who gets what he wants every time. And in most cases, the films deliver… with a side of product placement hoping to influence the fan on future product purchasers. But don’t worry, if you are not a fan, or don’t see the film, you are sure to experience one of many other advertisements associated with Bond… whether you are expecting it or not…
By Damien Mulhall Student ID: 212241227 WordPress User Name: damienmu
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