Faculty Publications

Viewers’ Evaluations Of Product Placements In Movies: Public Policy Issues And Managerial Implications

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Journal of Current Issues and Research in Advertising





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A comprehensive review of product placements from multiple perspectives (marketers, movie-makers and consumer advocates) is presented. We analyze data from a large-scale survey that capture viewers' attitudes toward placements and important public policy issues. Consistent with prior research, respondents’ attitudes toward placements were found to be generally positive. However, our analyses reveal differences across two large, distinct and statistically defensible segments comprising “those who like ads less” and “those who like ads more.” a comparison indicated that attitudes toward product placements in the former segment are more strongly correlated with the following variables: attitude towards realism in movies, and the belief that viewers may be misled by brands appearing as movie props. Regression analyses suggest that two variables (attitudes against placement of ethically-charged products, and the degree to which placements influence movie audiences subconsciously) do not explain the variations in attitudes toward product placements for the “like ads less” segment. Nevertheless, these variables are statistically significant (and reflect the expected signs) in a similar regression analysis for the “like ads more” segment. Moreover, the average attitude against placements for ethically-charged products are significantly stronger for the “like ads less” when compared to the “like ads more” segment. These results provide a richer interpretive context for findings in the Gupta and Gould (1997) study. We provide managerial guidelines on product placements for the benefit of marketers and moviemakers. Finally, promising topics for future study are identified. © 2000 Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.


Department of Marketing

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