Study: Web Users Tolerate Product Placement
For the study, New Media Strategies recently monitored 862 discussions on 43 sites, including those that focus on entertainment and gaming. Overall, 32% of the conversations surrounding product placement were negative. But the study also found that Web users were willing to accept brand messaging if it was included in an unobtrusive or clever way.
"Online consumers appear to be savvy when it comes to product placement and are willing to accept it if it does not detract from the entertainment experience," the report stated. "Employing subtlety and humor are more effective than blatantly plastering products everywhere."
The most-often-mentioned film when it came to product placement was "Casino Royale," which includes Sony computers, phones and Blu-Ray discs, Heineken beer, Ford automobiles, Omega watches, Virgin Atlantic Airways, and Smirnoff vodka. However, many consumers had neutral-to-negative reactions to the placement in that film, with some saying that they didn't notice, and others saying the barrage of brand names was too much.
"The Office" gained favorable mention for its product placement deal with Staples--the study cited several consumer conversations that said the integration was funny and consistent with the plot of the show.
Gamers were the least accepting of product placement in online video games.