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P.P thesis main

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P.P thesis main

  1. 1. Product Placement in Film: A Study of the Effectiveness of an Ethically Charged Product’s Placement in Film on a Millennials Purchase Intentions M. Sc. Marketing Dublin Institute of Technology DT344 Submitted by: Harry O Donnell Supervisor: Rosie Hand Date: October 2016
  2. 2. i DECLARATION I hereby certify that this material, which I now submit for assessment on the programme of study leading to the award of M. Sc. in Marketing is entirely my own work and has not been submitted for assessment for any academic purpose other than in partial fulfilment for that stated above. Signed……………………………………. Date………………………………………
  3. 3. ii ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I would like to extend my gratitude to my supervisor Rosie Hand for her continuous patience and assistance throughout the course of this dissertation. I would also like to thank both my parents who encouraged me from the beginning to keep going and not give up. I would also like to thank my aunt Mary for taking the time out of her busy schedule and offer me advice and guidance through this dissertation. Finally, I’d like to acknowledge a quote from Oscar Wilde that I’d go past every day both to and from college which connected with me on a personal level: “To Live is the rarest thing in the world, Most people exist, That is all” -Oscar Wilde
  4. 4. iii Table of Contents Abstract.......................................................................................................................1 Chapter 1: ...................................................................................................................2 Introduction................................................................................................................2 1.1 Purpose of this Study.........................................................................................3 1.2 Aims of this Study..............................................................................................3 1.3 Organisation of the Remainder of the Dissertation.........................................4 Chapter 2: ...................................................................................................................5 Literature Review.......................................................................................................5 2.1 Introduction.......................................................................................................6 2.4 Product Placement Effectiveness......................................................................9 2.5 Product Placement Ethics...............................................................................12 2.6 Product Placement Criticisms.........................................................................15 2.7 Consumer Attitudes Towards Product Placement..........................................16 2.8 Product Placement in Film and Television....................................................18 2.9 Conclusion.......................................................................................................19 Chapter 3: .................................................................................................................21 Contextual Analysis..................................................................................................21 3.1 Introduction.....................................................................................................22 3.2 History of Product Placement.........................................................................22 3.3 The Practice of Product Placement................................................................23 3.4 Placement of Alcohol in Film.........................................................................24 3.5 Placement of Cigarettes in Film.....................................................................25 3.6 Regulation of Product Placement...................................................................26
  5. 5. iv 3.7 Examples of Successful Product Placements.................................................28 3.8 Conclusion.......................................................................................................29 Chapter 4: .................................................................................................................30 Methodology .............................................................................................................30 4.1 Introduction:....................................................................................................31 4.2 The Research Process: ....................................................................................31 4.3 Research Question and Problem Definition...................................................32 4.3.1 The Research Question ..............................................................................32 4.3.2 Objective 1:................................................................................................32 4.3.3 Objective 2:................................................................................................33 4.3.4 Objective 3:................................................................................................33 4.3.5 Objective 4:................................................................................................34 4.4 Research Design:.............................................................................................34 4.4.1 Exploratory................................................................................................35 4.4.2 Descriptive.................................................................................................36 4.4.3 Explanatory................................................................................................36 4.4.4 Research Choice: .......................................................................................36 4.5 Research Philosophy:......................................................................................37 4.5.1 Positivism:..................................................................................................38 4.5.2 Interpretivism:............................................................................................38 4.5.3 Research choice:........................................................................................38 4.6 Research Approach..........................................................................................39 4.7 Research Strategy............................................................................................39 4.8 Time Horizon...................................................................................................40 4.9 Data Collection................................................................................................40
  6. 6. v 4.9.1 Secondary Data: ........................................................................................40 4.9.2 Primary Data:............................................................................................41 4.9.3 Sampling Plan............................................................................................41 4.9.4 Questionnaire Design ................................................................................42 4.10 Pilot Test........................................................................................................46 4.11 Data Analysis.................................................................................................47 Data Analysis & Findings ........................................................................................48 5.1 Introduction.....................................................................................................49 5.1.1 Forms of Analysis..........................................................................................49 5.1.2 Format of Data Analysis/Unit of Analysis.....................................................49 5.2 Part 1: Demographical Information...............................................................51 5.3 Part 2: Objective 1:..........................................................................................56 5.3.1 Screen Placement.......................................................................................56 5.3.2 Script Placement ........................................................................................56 5.3.3 Plot Placement...........................................................................................57 5.3.4 Characters Role:........................................................................................57 5.4 Part 3: Objective 2:..........................................................................................64 5.5 Part 4: Objective 3...........................................................................................67 5.6 Part 5: Objective 4:..........................................................................................74 Chapter 6: .................................................................................................................76 Discussion..................................................................................................................76 Objective 1..............................................................................................................77 Objective 3..............................................................................................................81 Objective 4..............................................................................................................83 Chapter 7: .................................................................................................................84
  7. 7. vi Conclusions & Recommendations ..........................................................................84 7.1 Final Conclusion.............................................................................................85 7.2 Future Research..............................................................................................86 7.3 Limitations.......................................................................................................86 Bibliography .............................................................................................................88 Website Links to Videos.......................................................................................101 Appendices..............................................................................................................102
  8. 8. vii List of Figures Figure 2.1: Persuasion Knowledge Model.................................................................11 Figure 4.1: Research Process Model..........................................................................31 Figure 4.2: Research Onion........................................................................................35 Figure 5.1: Age of Respondents.................................................................................52 Figure 5.2: Genders and Regularity of Watching Films ............................................53 Figure 5.3: Genders Favourite Genre of Film............................................................53 Figure 5.4: Gender Familiarity with Product Placement............................................54 Figure 5.5: Belief of Advertising Smoking................................................................61 Figure 5.6: Influence on People to Smoke .................................................................62 Figure 5.7: Awareness of Products Intent to Sell.......................................................64 Figure 5.8: Persuasion Knowledge with an Ethically Charged Product ....................65 Figure 5.9: Cross Tabulations Between Genders and Intent to Purchase ..................66 Figure 5.10: Feelings Towards Product Placement....................................................68 Figure 5.11: Feelings vs Avoidance...........................................................................69 Figure 5.12: Gender and Post Scene Purchase Intention ...........................................75 Figure 5.13: Gender and Effect of Smoking on Purchase Intention ..........................75
  9. 9. viii List of Tables Table 5.1: Gender.......................................................................................................51 Table 5.2: Cross tab between regularity and familiarity ............................................55 Table 5.3: Chi-square between regularity and familiarity..........................................55 Table 5.4: Mean of Screen Placement........................................................................56 Table 5.5: Mean of Script Placement.........................................................................56 Table 5.6: Mean of Plot Placement ............................................................................57 Table 5.7: Post Heineken Attitude Cronbach Alpha ..................................................58 Table 5.8: Post Heineken Purchase Intention Cronbach Alpha .................................58 Table 5.9: Correlation between Attitudes and Purchase intent ..................................59 Table 5.10: Model Summary between Attitudes and Purchase intent .......................59 Table 5.11: ANOVA table between Attitudes and Purchase intent ...........................60 Table 5.12: Belief of Advertising Smoking – Cross tab ............................................60 Table 5.13: Influence on People to Smoke ................................................................61 Table 5.14: Gender and effectiveness of Product Placement – Cross tab..................62 Table 5.15: Chi-Square Gender and effectiveness of Product Placement..................63 Table 5.16: Cross Tabulation.....................................................................................63 Table 5.17: Awareness of Products Intent to Sell ......................................................64 Table 5.18: Persuasion Knowledge with Ethically Charged Products.......................65 Table 5.19: Chi-Square gender and Intent to Purchase ..............................................66 Table 5.20: Feelings towards Product Placement ......................................................67 Table 5.21: Feelings vs Avoidance ............................................................................68 Table 5.22: Correlation for Disclaimer Attitudes Vs Purchase Intent .......................70 Table 5.23: Model Summary for Disclaimer Attitudes Vs Purchase Intent...............70 Table 5.24: ANOVA for Disclaimer Attitudes Vs Purchase Intent ...........................71 Table 5.25: Coefficients Disclaimer Attitudes Vs Purchase Intent............................71
  10. 10. ix Table 5.26: Correlation between attitudes of alcohol & cigarettes and Purchase Intention .....................................................................................................................72 Table 5.27: Model Summary for attitudes of alcohol & cigarettes and Purchase Intention .....................................................................................................................72 Table 5.28: ANOVA for attitudes of alcohol & cigarettes and Purchase Intention...73 Table 5.29: Coefficients for attitudes of alcohol & cigarettes and Purchase Intention .....................................................................................................................73 Table 5.30: Gender and Purchase of alcohol and cigarettes – cross tab ....................74
  11. 11. 1 Abstract Author: Harry O’Donnell Title: Product Placement in Film: A Study of the Effectiveness of an Ethically Charged Product’s Placement in Film on a Millennials Purchase Intentions This study investigated the effects of ethically charged products on a millennials purchase intentions. Many people have a favourable view of product placement in general however a lot of the criticisms are to do with the ethics of the practice. Specifically, products which can arouse ethical concerns such as alcohol and cigarette products. These products are known as ethically charged products. Although there have been previous studies of the effects of these products, the researcher is not aware of any previous studies which have dealt with their effects on purchase intentio ns specifically in the millennial consumer. This study adopted a quantitative approach. The primary research was conducted through the use of self-administered online questionnaires through questionnaire software website Qualtrics. In total, 176 responses were received with 168 analysed through statistical software package, SPSS. Secondary research was conducted by analysing existing literature and conducting a review into the industry of product placement. This study revealed that ethically charged products can have a positive effect on a millennial consumer’s purchase intention if the placement is reasonable. For example, if the viewer has a positive attitude towards a character’s interaction with an alcohol or cigarette product they are more likely to purchase this product. Future research could include a follow up in 5 years, a qualitative study and an investigation in terms of recall on an ethically charged product and/or brand beliefs.
  12. 12. 2 Chapter 1: Introduction
  13. 13. 3 Introduction: 1.1 Purpose of this Study As consumers become more aware of traditional forms of marketing, non-traditional forms of marketing have become very popular to marketers. One of these forms of non-traditional advertising is product placement which has proven to have very influential effects on a consumer. The majority of consumers have favourable attitudes towards the practice however when people do object to product placements it is usually on ethical grounds. Products such as alcohol and cigarettes have proven to be more controversial than other products and are therefore classed as ethically charged. A relatively untouched area of research is the effects these products can have on a millennial consumer’s purchase intentions. Due to this lack of research, the researcher feels there is a gap within the area of ethics in product placement and has chosen to conduct research that will address this aspect of the practice. 1.2 Aims of this Study While research has been conducted into the acceptability of these products in movies, none has been conducted into the effectiveness of these products on purchase intention. This study will investigate the effectiveness of ethically charged products on a millennials purchase intentions. This study aims to answer the following research question: Do ethically charged products in films have an effect on a millennials purchase intentions? Furthermore, the four objectives that have been set are: 1. To examine if there is a relationship between the role an ethically charged product plays on screen and a millennials purchase intention 2. To investigate if the activation of a consumer’s persuasion knowledge on an ethically charged product will lead to purchase intention 3. To examine if the introduction of a disclaimer at the beginning of the film will have any effect on a consumer’s purchase intention
  14. 14. 4 4. To investigate if there is any relationship between the consumer’s purchase intention after viewing an ethically charged product and the consumer’s gender 1.3 Organisation of the Remainder of the Dissertation The upcoming chapters of this dissertation will be separated into four different sections. The next phase will be made up of Chapter Two and Chapter Three, which will consist of a review of existing literature on the area of product placement as well as a review of the industry. The next phase will be Chapter Four, which will discuss and explain in detail the research methods employed in this study, giving a solid rationale for why each method was chosen, as well as the ways in which data was collected. Chapter Five will highlight the method that was used to analyse the data collected during the fieldwork for this study. Findings from this analysis will also be presented. Chapter Six will then focus on a discussion and an explanation of the reliability of the findings. Conclusions from the findings will be written up in Chapter Seven along with limitations to this study. Recommendations for future research will be offered as an aid for any researchers who may be interested in continuing research on the effects of ethically charged products. Lastly, a full reference list of all the researchers and websites used in this study will be included along with an appendices section which will contain all the documents of importance that were used by the researcher throughout the process of data collection.
  15. 15. 5 Chapter 2: Literature Review
  16. 16. 6 Literature Review 2.1 Introduction This literature review discusses the work of previous researchers of product placement and also the effects of ethically charged products. It has been written to provide a theoretical framework of the research topic. Companies have been investing huge amounts of money in advertising but customers continue to ignore these advertisements (Jones, 2014). 70% of consumers skip online advertisements on social sharing sites like YouTube and Facebook while traditional advertising such as, television advertisements, billboards and print advertisements all lack engagement with the consumer which impact sales negatively (Jones, 2014). Marketers need to come up with new ways of eliciting an emotional response from consumers and engaging them on a personal level (Jones, 2014). Non-traditional forms of marketing communications, which aim to influence audiences unobtrusively, are gaining popularity (Li, Kuo & Russell, 1999). Anti-consumerism groups have argued that marketing communications strategies like this are unethical (Schudson, 1984). Therefore, companies have started seeking new ways to promote their products, due to consumers’ scepticism towards traditional advertising and the fierce competition for market share (Kuhn, Hume & Love, 2010). Thus advertisers are seeking more effective ways of swaying consumers’ attitudes in today’s oversaturated and fragmented marketing environment (Homer, 2009). This oversaturated and fragmented market is caused by an increased clutter of advertisements on television, radio, billboards and in print. Thus, to get through the clutter marketers turn to product placement (Russell & Belch, 2005). Product placement is a form of non-traditional advertising which can have influential effects on an audience (Kuhn et al, 2010). The recent popularity of product placement has come about due to its cost benefit ratio and potential for mass audiences to see a product (de Gregorio & Sung, 2010). This acceptance of the practice has resulted in product placement rising from $7.5 billion in 2006 (Homer, 2009) to an estimated $10 billion in the 2015 global market share (Rowe, 2015).
  17. 17. 7 2.2 Definition of Product Placement Definitions of product placement have changed over the years (Hudson & Hudson, 2006). Balasubramanian (1994) regards it as different forms of promotion and defines it as a company paying a production to include their branded product in order to influence audiences who do not explicitly identify with the sponsor. Gupta and Gould (1997) divulge that placement involves integrating brands in films in return for money or other promotional consideration. The ICC Code of Advertising and Marketing Communication (2010) cited in Chan (2012), have a similar definition as these by stating that product placement is the inclusion of a product in a featured programme, which is normally in return for payment or other valuable consideration to the programme producer or licensee. Also d’Astous and Chartier (2000) believe that it is used for promotional based purposes by placing the product, the brand name or the name of the firm in the film or television programme. However, according to Lehu (2007) there is no exact definition of product placement since the practice continues to evolve. Lehu does reveal however, that “the use of ‘product placement’ or ‘brand placement’ basically describes the location, or even more accurately, integration of a product or brand into a film, a television show, songs, novels, video games or other cultural vehicles”. Law and Braun (2000) refer to product placement as intentionally putting a brand into editorial content. This is known as brand placement. Karrh (1998) follows this theory by describing it as the inclusion of branded products or brand identifiers. Some authors also suggest that it is brands that are more commonly placed, rather than an actual product, revealing that they believe the term should be defined as ‘brand placement’ instead (Morton and Friedman, 2002; Karrh, 1998). Chan (2012) highlights that any form of placement will include the brand name, the logo or any other identifiable trademark to do with the product, e.g. the red and white strips of Coca-Cola. Both ‘product placement’ and ‘brand placement’ have been used interchangeably throughout the literature. Although brand placement captures the essence of the activity more (Karrh, 1998), product placement is the more general term which has been used in previous literature (Chan, 2012; Tiwaskul, Hackley & Szmigin, 2005). Having discussed the different definitions of product placement, the various types of placements will now be considered.
  18. 18. 8 2.3 Types of Product Placement Russel (1998) highlighted that placements can be visual, auditory and plot connected. A visual placement usually refers to placing a brand in the background, with the appearance of the brand on–screen, number of appearances and style of the camera shot being of the upmost importance. This is usually a subtler placement (Kuhn, Hume & Love, 2010). Auditory or verbal placement refers to the brand/product been mentioned in the dialogue and can vary depending on the frequency with which it is mentioned and also the context and emphasis which is used for the brand name. There is then plot connection which refers to the integration of the brand/product in the plot of the film or TV programme and can vary from the brand been only mentioned or making a brief appearance to being central to the plot of the show (e.g. Modern Family and Apple iPad (Kuhn, et al., 2010). However, Kuhn (2005) highlights that there is a fourth type of placement which brands can use. This is interactive media placement which can now be seen in video games. It was predicted that more than one-third of product placement in video games by 2009 would be in the form of ‘advergaming’, where the advertisers will create a game around a product rather than place the brand within a well-known video game (Financial Post, 2005 cited in Hudson & Hudson, 2006). These placements could be either of the three referred to earlier. Two other different types of placements which are highlighted in the literature are subtle and prominent placements (Gupta & Lord, 1998). These placements are usually referring to the visibility of the brand on screen. Subtle placements are those where the product is merely used as a background prop and is not central to the scene (Kuhn et al., 2010). Prominent placements such as Coca Cola on American Idol (Hudson & Hudson, 2006) are more obvious but less effective, as it is obvious what the placement intends to do (Gupta & Lord, 1998). Homer (2009) also reveals that it was anticipated that the two factors interact such that brand attitude decreases when prominent product placements are repeated but when the placements are subtle the consumer’s attitudes are more positive even if there are moderate levels of repetition throughout the production. Homer (2009) discovered that when a placement was subtle and the repetition low the placement was in risk of going unnoticed. However, when a placement was subtle and the repetition was moderate the placement would illicit a positive response from the consumer. This was also the case when a placement was prominent but the repetition was low. Homer (2009) concludes that in order too illicit
  19. 19. 9 a positive response from a consumer towards your brand or product, the marketer should insure that the placement is not intrusive for the consumer. This discloses the paradox of Ephron (2003) who states how marketers should be careful with which type of placement they choose because “If you notice it, it’s bad but if you don’t notice it, it’s worthless”. The problem with prominent placements was clarified by Atkinson (2003) who finds that the placements are perceived to be more distracting, less realistic and could also end up interfering with the plot of the production. With this in mind it is no wonder that practitioners such as Russell and Belch (2005) favour subtle placements. Subtle placements can be presented briefly, peripherally and do not need to be integrated into the plot (Cowley & Barron, 2008). As the subtlety placed product is indistinguishable from the editorial content, the viewer is more likely to be influenced by such placements (Law & Braun, 2000). 2.4 Product Placement Effectiveness Previous studies, such as Hackley and Tiwaskul (2006), delve deeper into why brands use product placement by suggesting it is a great way to introduce a new product into the market, develop the brands image and also improving sales of the product, all the while thwarting the negative attitudes which usually originate from traditional advertising. Other studies on product placement have highlighted the effectiveness of the practice. Product placement effectiveness can be measured in terms of communication effects like brand awareness or sales effects like a consumers purchase intentions or behaviours (Chan, 2012). Usually brand recall and attitudes are used to measure a placements efficacy (Chan, 2012). Brand awareness is regarded as the most likely outcome of product placement (Sawyer, 2006). This opinion of brand awareness been the most likely outcome from product placement is shared by Wiles and Danielova (2009). Cowley and Barron (2008) also found that the more consumers are exposed to product placements, the more it increases explicit memory for a brand. However, Bhatnagar, Aksoy and Malkoc (2004) cited in Chan (2012) highlight that the effectiveness of a placement should be aimed at more outcomes other than memory as an improvement in memory does not guarantee an improvement in brand attitude (Cowley & Barron,
  20. 20. 10 2008). This is backed up by Matthes et al., (2007) who clarified that recall does not necessarily transfer into attitude or purchase intention. However, this can be due to the brand being recalled favourably or non-favourably. Russell (2002) pin points that placements, which are heavily connected to a plot, are well recalled but disliked, while if a placement is instead integrated into the story it is well liked (d’Astous & Chartier, 2000). For consumers to then leave the cinema and then purchase a product the most important factor is how the product was used on screen (Kamleithner & Jyote, 2013). This could activate a viewer’s purchase intentions. Kamleithner and Jyote (2013) are of the opinion that a character’s interaction with a product in a film can have an effect on how a person will view the product. They found that if the aim of the placement was to enhance a viewer’s purchase intentions or the willingness of someone to pay for a product then how the product is demonstrated is just as important as who it is demonstrated by. Reese’s Pieces chocolate experienced a 60% rise in sales figures after it was used to tempt ET in the movie of the same name (Newell et al., 2006; Christofides, Muise & Desmarais, 2012). Also de Gregorio and Sung (2010) highlight that after appearing in the James Bond film “Goldeneye”, the BMW Z3 roadster experienced a backlogging of more than a year as the supply could not meet the demand after the vehicle was prominently used by the main character throughout the film. These placements could be seen as more indirect and subtle as they add more realism to the film (Russell, 1998). Likewise, the demonstration of the product on-screen (Kamleithner & Jyote, 2013) has more of an impact on a viewer’s purchase intentions than a visual placement which may just help with brand recall rather than the intention to purchase (Matthes, Schemer & Wirth, 2007; Chan, 2012). This could have to do with visually prominent placements being perceived as more aggressive and having a higher promotional intention (Chan, 2012). There is a chance here that the consumers will become aware of the placements intent (de Gregorio & Sung, 2010). If a viewer notices a change in placement of the product from the background to the foreground, it could cause a change in meaning for the viewer (Cowley & Barron, 2008). Friestad and Wright (1994) reveal that people develop knowledge about why, how and when a message is intended to influence them which will help them deal with the message. This is known as the persuasion knowledge model. Previous research using the PKM investigated situations where consumers must contend with a sales
  21. 21. 11 agent (Campbell & Kirmani, 2000) or an advertising message (Ahluwlia & Burnkrant, 2004). Both of these situations are a cause for activating persuasion knowledge. However, the exposure to product placement is different as the consumer is viewing the film or TV show as a form of entertainment (Cowley & Barron, 2008). As Friestad and Wright (1994) have highlighted persuasion knowledge evolves over time, so as the consumers become more aware of the tactic their interpretations and evaluations of the message been broadcast to them will change. This could explain how persuasion knowledge is not regularly activated after viewing; but will activate when the consumer believes a message is intended to persuade (Cowley & Barron, 2008). Previous researchers have found that there are individual differences in the content and use of the model through factors like age, occupation and culture (Friestad and Wright, 1995; Kirmani and Campbell, 2004). Ham, Nelson and Das (2014) clarify how the model refers to the Target (the consumer which the persuasion is aimed at) and the Agent (the person responsible for constructing the persuasion, e.g. advertiser). An advertisement on television is an example of how the Target and the Agent come together for a particular persuasion episode (Ham et al., 2014). For the purpose of this research the persuasion knowledge model will be used to explore the effectiveness of product placement (Wei, Fischer & Main, 2008) with the millennial age group. Fig. 1.1. Persuasion Knowledge Model
  22. 22. 12 As product placement practices have increased, so to have calls from some quarters on providing consumers with ways to deal with this form of covert marketing (Wei, et al., 2008). Marketers assume that alerting consumers to brand placement will reduce the impact of the intended message (Wei et al., 2008). On the whole, product placements are believed to be most effective when brands meld seamlessly with the elements in which they are embedded (McCarthy, 2004; Russell, 1998). The assumption is with triggering consumer awareness is that what they are seeing or hearing includes a persuasive message which jeopardizes the overall effectiveness of covert marketing techniques like product placement (Wei et al., 2008). These perspectives coincide with Friestad and Wright (1994) who claim that persuasion knowledge is a key resource that consumers rely on in response to agents and activities in the marketplace. The research suggests that triggering persuasion knowledge – by heightening consumers’ awareness that an agent is trying to influence them – negatively affects the efficiency of sales tactics (Campbell & Kirmani, 2000). Hence, if the consumer is not made aware that the salesperson is trying to persuade them, they tend to react more favourably to the placement. 2.5 Product Placement Ethics There have been many studies done concerning the ethical issues of product placement. Strain (2009) cited in Kovalenko and Wooliscroft (2012) labels product placement as ‘inherently deceptive’ and highlights that it is advertising which purports to be something else. One of the main concerns for consumers to product placement is the subliminal effect it could have on them (Tiwsakul et al., 2005). If the consumer is unable to detect this subliminal nature of a placement then the persuasive intent of this placement will not be noticeable (Kovalenko & Wooliscroft, 2012). Nebenzahl and Secunda (1993) were the first people to pin point the subliminal effects of product placement. However, they did note that the majority of people surveyed had a positive reaction to product placement but the ones who had a negative reaction were worried about the ethical concerns of the practice. Alcohol, guns and cigarettes are controversial when advertised in films and can have more of an effect on a person’s attitudes. These are known as ethically charged products (Gupta & Gould, 1997).
  23. 23. 13 There is a general concern when promoting these products, as regulative authorities seem to lack control when it comes to product placement (Hackley, Tiwasakul & Preuss, 2008). While television have codes of practice when it comes to product placement in films, deals are usually struck between the brand owner and the studio which can evade advertising authorities as these items can be used as props and therefore fall under editorial control of the producers (Hackley et al., 2008). Thus product placement can disguise its persuasive intent in order to inhibit our defensive mechanisms (Chan, 2012). There is a lack of knowledge on how an audience would process these product placements (Craig-Lees, Scott & Wong, 2008). And so it is important to understand what type of an effect an ethically charged product would have on an audiences purchase intentions. There are some concerns that cigarette placements may positively arouse viewers especially younger ones, as well as enhance perceptions of the social stature of smokers and increase smoking intention (Distefan, Pierce & Gilpin, 2004). Other research has also substantiated this concern, as the exposure to smoking in movies influences the initiation of smoking among adolescents (Morgenstern et al., 2011) while drinking scenes lead to young adults consuming alcohol in greater amounts (Koordeman, Kuntsche, Anschutz, Van Baaren & Engels, 2011). The favourable portrayal of these ethically charged products can seriously affect the behaviour and attitudes of consumers, especially millennials. For example, Gibson and Maurer (2000) found that even though college students were knowledgeable about the health effects of smoking, they were more likely to start a friendship with a smoker after viewing smoking in a film and thus begin smoking themselves. Kovalenko and Wooliscroft (2012) highlight that different consumer segments have different levels of awareness to the persuasive intents of product placement. For example, children have no sensitivity to product placement (Avery & Ferraro, 2000), while adults on the other hand are predominately knowledgeable to the purpose of product placement and have insisted that they have the ability to resist its persuasive intents (DeLorme & Reid, 1999). According to Kovalenko and Wolliscroft (2012) without brands, the appearance of products in movies can be hardly associated with persuasive intent. Yet, even the placement of a non-branded product may promote
  24. 24. 14 consumption. For example, “Rums of Puerto Rico” advertised San Juan as the rum capital of the world in 2011’s “The Rum Diary” (Sauer, 2011 cited in Kovalenko & Wooliscroft). However, since the lead character in the film was revealed to be binge drinking the product, it is unlikely that the rum companies supported the filmmakers. Also at the same time as this binge drinking was happening the filmmakers highlighted the adventures their lead character got up to while inebriated. Kovalenko and Wooliscroft (2012) explain that by showing both the negative and positive sides to drinking, the filmmakers make the message in the film more credible, which can thereby increase the attractiveness of alcohol consumption. Of the 100 top-grossing films from 1940 to 1989 drinkers were perceived to be more attractive, wealthy, romantic, sexually active and reasonably aggressive compared to their non-drinking counterparts (McIntosh, Smith, Bazzini & Mills, 1999). Research suggests that an acknowledgement of the placement before the film begins is required to establish to the viewers that an ethically charged product will be seen in the film. Kennedy (1962) cited in Kovalenko and Wooliscroft (2012) stated that according to the US Consumer Bill consumers are entitled to know about the essence of promoted products. If this notice was left until the end of the film then the viewers are more than likely going to miss it as they will have already left the cinema (Avery & Ferraro, cited in Wenner, 2004). A disclosure at the beginning of the film would perhaps lessen the deception to the viewer (Kuhn et al., 2010). This message of the persuasive intent behind the placement of risky products would please both the advocacy groups and their opponents (Kovalenko & Wooliscroft, 2012). The disclosure could also allow the movie makers to continue to use ethically charged products in their films without the threat of being classified as an R-rated movie (Chapman, 2008). Other theorists, such as Chan (2012), also believe that a disclosure at the beginning of a film will help protect audiences against any type of promotional intention. Chan (2012) also reveals that the disclosure could help brands improve brand recall, even though Homer (2009) highlights how product placements are more effective when consumers are not aware of it. However, as Hackley et al., (2008) pin- point, that as viewers become more aware of the practice of product placement, it may mean that it cannot be classed as the deceptive practice it used to be.
  25. 25. 15 2.6 Product Placement Criticisms Product placement has its critics with Strain (2009, p.178) labelling it “inherently deceptive” and “unfair as it is advertising which purports to be something else”. Russell and Belch (2005) believe that a well-executed placement is when a product is organically woven into the plot and diminishes the consumer’s ability to detect the persuasive message. Prior studies have indicated that consumers have less favourable brand attitudes and lower purchase intentions when they realize that a product is trying to sell to them (Wei et al., 2008). Product placement has attracted ongoing debate as to whether it is covert, unethical and influences consumption (Kuhn et al., 2010). This is also touched on by Balasubramanian (1994) who believes product placement may facilitate learning through audience identification and help individuals acquire brand preferences and consumption behaviours. The practice has been the subject of legal challenges and calls for restraint in cases where more vulnerable audience groups are involved (Karrh, 1998). This is because different consumer segments have different levels of awareness of persuasive intents behind product placement (Kovalenko & Wooliscroft, 2012). For example, children have no sensitivity towards product placement (Avery & Ferraro, 2000). In contrast, adults are predominantly knowledgeable of the practice and have an increased ability to resist it persuasive intents (DeLorme & Reid, 1999). When manipulative tactics, such as persuasion attempts, are recognized by the consumer they become much less effective (Cotte, Coulter & Moore, 2005). Concerns of ethically charged products, such as alcohol and cigarettes, have been raised as these can have a behavioural influence on vulnerable groups (Kuhn et al., 2010). For example, tobacco placements may positively arouse young viewers and enhance the perception of a smoker’s social stature which could increase smoking intention especially among girls (Distefan et al., 2004). This highlights why some theorists believe the practice of product placement is perceived to contain subliminal aspects which can make it even more threatening (Nebenzahl & Secunda, 1993). However, whether product placement is perceived as subliminal or less intrusive, it is still suspect in the eyes of the critics (Gupta & Gould, 1997). Another aspect which can cause critical concern is the digital insertion of a product into a scene, which can be seen as taking advantage of viewers who may not be able
  26. 26. 16 to understand or notice that such products were originally not meant to be in the scene and were included specifically to target them (Morton & Friedman, 2002). This type of deception relates to Homers (2009) belief that the practice lacks a sense of credibility as it is just like any other means of advertising communication tool which is short of substantial information. 2.7 Consumer Attitudes Towards Product Placement Darke and Ritchie (2007) reveal that consumers can feel oppressed toward traditional advertising which can then lead to a rejection of marketing in general. However, entertainment marketing such as product placement is well appreciated when it’s not used in an intrusive way (Homer, 2009). The use of product placement has the advantage of highlighting a product or brand to a consumer without them having to watch a 30 second television advert during a TV show or film (Lehu, 2007). This is due to product placements been more indirect and subtle than traditional advertising and can persuade consumers to purchase in a less defensive way (Chan, 2012). Product placement can also offer consumers an opportunity to watch the characters in the film or TV show interact with the product/brand on a daily basis (Hackley & Tiwaskul, 2006). The practice can be viewed as more than just an advertisement of the product but can enhance the realism of the plot for the viewers (Hackely & Tiwaskul, 2006). Shermach (1995) cited in Kuhn et al., (2010) claims that down through the years’ product placement has attracted criticism from anti-consumerists, the media, consumer advocacy groups and some consumers who claim that it is deceptive advertising. Berkowitz (1994) reveals that consumers are unaware of the persuasive intent of placements and that these placements may influence them. One of the strongest criticisms from consumers for product placement is the feeling amongst them that it entails ‘subliminal’ or ‘subconscious’ promotional effects (Gupta & Gould, 1997; Morton & Friedman, 2002). Balasubramanian (1994) reveals product placement may enable learning through audience identification and assist viewers in acquiring a brand preference and also increase their consumption behaviour. Cowley and Barron (2008) conducted research which highlights a shift in brand attitude after the consumer is exposed to product placement. They found that products which were prominent in their placements resulted in the viewer having a negative
  27. 27. 17 attitude towards the brand especially if it’s a programme or film they like. Consumer attitudes towards product placements in film and television shows have been found to be generally quite positive (Nebenzahl & Secunda, 1993; Gupta & Gould, 1997; de Gregorio & Sung, 2010). Viewers also react more positively to ‘real’ placements in film and television shows rather than ‘fake’ placements as it gives the viewer a sense of realism (Tiwaskul et al., 2005). However, there have been reservations regarding the insertion of certain ethically charged products (de Gregorio & Sung, 2010). Ethically charged products have been classed by researchers to be products such as tobacco, firearms and alcohol (Gupta & Gould, 1997). These products are rated as the most unacceptable for placement, particularly in youth oriented content (Gupta & Gould, 1997; McKechnie & Zhou, 2003). However, Gupta and Gould (1997) did find that people who watched films more frequently were more acceptable of these ethically charged products. Female students are slightly more concerned about the effects of ethically charged products than their male counterparts (Brennan, Rosenberger & Hementera, 2004; Gupta & Gould, 1997). With regards to age, DeLorme and Reid’s (1999) research highlighted that older consumers were more concerned with the manipulative power that placements possess and had great distrust for the practice compared with younger consumers. In Nebenzahl and Secunda’s (1993) research, they found that most people who they used in their sample did not object to product placements, although the ones who did, did so on ethical grounds. In the past, advocacy groups have proposed the total banning or pixelating of smoking scenes (Chapman, 2008). However, Gupta et al., (2000) revealed that these risky products are a part of social reality and without them the film, TV show or whatever form of media they appear in would seem unrealistic. In the UK in 2010 product placement was allowed on television for the first time (Tryhorn, 2010). However, Campbell (2010) also highlighted that ethically charged products including alcohol, drugs, cigarettes and firearms were still not allowed for product placement. In films, product placement is still not as well regulated (Chan, 2012). Consumer activists highlight that products placed in a film for payment should be disclosed to the audience at the beginning of the film (Avery & Ferraro, 2000; DeLorme & Reid, 1999). In Tiwaskul et al., (2005) study, respondents believed that
  28. 28. 18 placed brands should be disclosed. As such, regulation of product placement remains a crucial issue and its effects on persuasiveness remains unclear (Chan, 2012). 2.8 Product Placement in Film and Television The practice of product placement has continued to spread over recent years, as marketers turn to a variety of communication channels in order to reach the consumer (McCarty, 2004). These communication elements -the promotional mix- that marketers use, are for the purpose of reminding or persuading an intended audience (Nunlee et al., 2012). Due to the growth of consumer resistance to traditional broadcast advertising, companies are increasingly turning to different ways of reaching consumers in order to enhance the value of their brands (Elliot, 2008; Keller, 2001). Covert marketing practices in the form of branded product placement in movies, music, television and video games have increased dramatically in volume and sophistication over the past two decades (Bosman, 2006; Lieberman, 2006). According to Pangarker and Smit (2013) the film industry is one of the most popular and significant players in the world’s economy. In 2010, the worldwide Box-Office revenue was estimated to be worth around $31.8 billion (Pangarker & Smit, 2013). The majority of research on product placement has been conducted from a film perspective. Product placement in films is a growing promotional area, upon which much media attention has been focused (Gupta & Gould, 1997). Product placement in films originated in the 1940’s (Wiles & Danielova, 2009) but has only been deployed as a key marketing tactic for companies in the past few decades (Karrh, McKee & Pardun, 2003). Production companies use placements to save costs, as these placements can give them much needed financial support as well as a level of authenticity to the film or TV show (Hudson & Hudson, 2000; Jones, 2014). Successful placements in films and TV shows can attract very large audiences all over the world which means that the placement is worth it when cost per viewer is taken into consideration (Karrh, 1998; d’Astous & Chartier, 2000). Also films shown at the theatre can be distributed on video later on, which will see the brands who invested in a placement receive benefits for many years to come (Marshall, 1998 cited in Morton & Friedman, 2002). Another more recent benefit is pointed out by Russell and Stern (2006) who highlight that the exposure the brand receives results in an increase in
  29. 29. 19 sales, due to the popularity of online streaming, which allows consumers to continually watch their favourite shows and films. Blockbuster films are the most successful genre of film when it comes to earnings according to Aveyard (2011). McCraken (1989) suggests that the use of celebrity endorsers on screen is effective because celebrities are very popular figures who pass on traits of their own onto the product. Consumers connect their own lives to the film, drawing their aspirations onto the products placed in the film (DeLorme & Reid, 1999), which can influence attitudes and consumption norms (Pechmann & Shih, 1999). Due to this, placements in films have been found to increase a consumer’s brand awareness, their attitude towards the brand, as well as their purchase intent (Russell, 2002; d’Astous & Chartier, 2000). Thus, impulse purchases can result from product placements (Wiles & Danielova, 2009). Prominent placements can capture attention and enhance these consumer outcomes (Gupta & Lord, 1998). This is due to brands been placed more prominently being more memorable and leading to better recall (Cowley & Barron, 2008; Gupta & Lord, 1998). With this, product placement in films is valued according to its relative prominence (Gupta & Gould, 1997). As such, paid placement deals for higher prominence are usually higher in cost (Chan, 2012). 2.9 Conclusion Product placement can be a huge advantage to marketers due to its cost benefit ratio and also its potential for mass audiences to see their product (de Gregorio & Sung, 2010). Studies have suggested that product placement is a great way for brands to introduce new products to the market, as it has the ability to improve sales and develop the brand’s image (Hackely & Tiwaskul, 2006). The effects of product placement are usually measured by the awareness created for the brand and also the sales effects, like on a consumers purchase intentions (Chan, 2012). For consumers to leave the cinema or their home after watching a TV show or film and purchase a product the most important issue for the marketers is how their product was used on screen (Kamleithner & Jyote, 2013). The authors of this study also examined this further by suggesting that it is the characters in the production who
  30. 30. 20 interact with the product who have the greatest effect on how consumers view a product and enhance their purchase intentions (Kamleithner & Jyote, 2013). Reece’s Pieces made the most of this by having their product used by ET in the movie of the same name (Newell et al., 2006). The researcher wonders if this character usage will still enhance the consumers purchase intention, if it’s an ethically charged product. With the practice of product placement becoming more and more popular, there have been increased calls from consumer groups to protect the consumer from this covert marketing technique (Wei et al., 2008). However, marketers believe highlighting to the consumer that they are trying to influence them into purchasing their product, could have a negative effect on sales tactics (Campbell & Kirmani, 2000). Several authors also mention the possibility of a disclaimer, at the beginning of the production, to negate the effects the products on show can have on the consumer’s purchase intentions (Kovalenko & Wooliscroft, 2012; Chan, 2102). Product Placement is mostly viewed in a positive light with consumers only reacting negatively to the ethical side of the practice (Nebenzahl & Secunda, 1993). Ethically charged products such as alcohol and cigarettes can have more of an effect on a person’s attitudes (Gupta & Gould, 1997). The literature has examined how consumers have expressed a need for regulations on product placement, especially when it comes to dangerous products such as alcohol, cigarettes and guns (Hackley,Tiwaskul & Preuss, 2008). Friestad and Wright (1994) claim that persuasion knowledge is a very important resource which consumers rely upon in response to agents and activities in the marketplace. Research suggests that triggering persuasion knowledge will negatively affect the efficiency of sales tactics (Campbell & Kirmani, 2000). However, would this affect the sales of ethically charged products after studies have revealed that millennials consume more alcohol (Koordemann et al., 2011) and are more likely to begin smoking (Morgenstern et al., 2011; Gibson & Maurer, 2000) after watching a film.
  31. 31. 21 Chapter 3: Contextual Analysis
  32. 32. 22 Contextual Analysis 3.1 Introduction The contextual review focuses on the industry of product placement in further detail and is written with the intent of further adding to the theoretical context of the research topic. 3.2 History of Product Placement Product placement began as a way of linking families to businesses which eventually resulted in a way of reducing the cost of production and increasing brand exposure for all parties involved (Newell, Salmon & Chang, 2006). Product placement is not a new form of advertising as it can be traced back to the 1890’s. The Lever brothers (Unilever) were the first to secure a deal for their branded soaps to be placed in Lumiere French films (Newell et al., 2006; Hudson & Hudson, 2006). Thomas Edison would have been one of the key contributors who converted product placement into a commercial business in the early 1900’s (Newell et al., 2006). In fact, Thomas Edison used subtle placements in his movies to influence viewers. This was commonly seen in the 1930’s and onwards as film producers and brand owners engaged in product placement deals (Hudson & Hudson, 2006). An example of this is Buick motor vehicles having a ten picture deal with Warner Brothers in the 1930’s and US tobacco companies also having deals for stars of a film and athletes to endorse their brands (Hudson & Hudson, 2006; McKechnie & Zhou, 2003). Companies saw the association of their products with the glamour and beauty which comes with these types of celebrities as beneficial in terms of their product sales and brand image (Nebenzahl & Segunda, 1993). Form the 1930’s until the 1980’s barter style arrangements were in place whereby brand owners would benefit from exposure of their brands and film makers would obtain financial support and add a level of authenticity to their films (Hudson & Hudson, 2006). This is still on-going today as Karrh (1998) highlights that 85% of product placement deals are done on a barter basis, while Chang, Newell and Salmon (2009) suggest that 56% of the worldwide value of product placement is in cash free
  33. 33. 23 arrangements. However, by the 1970’s a new form of agreements was introduced with paid-for placements (Balasubramanian, 1994; Mckechnie & Zhou, 2003). By the time the 1980’s came around, it became essential for the production companies and the brands to negotiate these business agreements thus product placement agencies were established (Hudson & Hudson, 2006; Mckechnie & Zhou, 2003). Product placement did not become a rapid growth area until the 1980’s (Chan, 2012). It was then that Reese’s candy saw a dramatic growth in their sales of 65% after it was integrated into E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial (Tsai, Liang & Liu, 2007 cited in Chan, 2012). From here product placement was formally named (Chan, 2012). For an advertiser such as Reece’s pieces, product placement leads to increased awareness, a more positive attitude towards their product and ultimately a purchase (Karrh, 1995). 3.3 The Practice of Product Placement Product placement has occurred due to its cost benefit ratio and potential for mass and specific presegmented audiences unobtrusively (de Gregorio & Sung, 2010; Karrh et al., 2003; McKechnie & Zhou, 2003). This is emphasized by companies approaching production studios and asking if they can place their brands in the film and pay a fee or the studios could approach the companies and ask them could they use their brands or else deals could be made through a placement agency (Scott, 1988 cited in Gupta, Balasubramanian & Klassen, 2000). The brand which is being interwoven into the content should be “organically consumed” so that with each appearance the brand is reaffirming its preferred status (Jones, 2014). Product placement is by no means a new phenomenon for marketers to sell their products. From the Aston Martin in the first James Bond film, “Dr. No”, to Reece’s Pieces in “E.T” to Barbie and many more toy brands appearing across the “Toy Story” franchise, marketers have continuously placed their products (Song, Meyer & Kyoungnam, (2015). It is highlighted in Wenner (2004) that initially studios and producers would inspect scripts so that they could take note of what type of props would be needed for the production and would then proceed to contact the brands and negotiate deals. Brands then had the opportunity to examine the scripts for themselves in order to clarify that the use of their brand is in keeping with their overall brand strategy (Russell & Belch, 2005).
  34. 34. 24 In 1974, paid for placements accounted for nearly 18% of all placements while 30 years later in 2004, they accounted for 29.3% (Lehu, 2009). When brands do need to pay production companies for placements, the price of the placement can vary depending on its nature (Wenner, 2004). For example, visual placements are the least costly, as the brand will only be ‘seen’, while verbal placements and character usage will be more expensive (DeLorme & Reid, 1999). The benefits of placing a brand in any entertainment medium can make it a very attractive option for advertisers, as it heightens the brands exposure, gives it a longer shelf life through internet downloads and also enhances the realism of the production (Daugherty & Gangadharbatla, 2005). This reveals that product placement is a unique way for marketers to popularize and preserve their brands, as movies can reach a mass audience and have a long shelf life (Gupta et al., 2000). Lehu (2007) discusses how a well-placed brand never ages, an example being the cars, jewellery and drinks in James Bond. By placing their brands in films as famous as James Bond, the marketers are targeting their consumers with more precision by increasing brand awareness, brand familiarity and hopefully instigating a positive image of their brand (Wiles & Danielova, 2009). Traditional advertising can be very good at highlighting the benefits of a product and using personalised messaging to connect to the buyer; however, like the products which could be viewed in a James Bond film, advertising is at its most effective when it elicits an emotional response and engages the viewer on a personal level (Jones, 2014). 3.4 Placement of Alcohol in Film The endearing popularity of films continues to attract brands in a wide variety of markets, which look to forge relationships via sponsorships and product placements. The alcoholic drinks market has a well-established association with films dating back several decades, with brands such as Heineken and Belvedere sponsoring James Bond Films and Stella Artois sponsoring films on Channel 4 (Wisson, 2016). In a study by Stoolmiller, Wills, McClure, et al., (2012) it was revealed that 28% of adolescents are more likely to start drinking after being exposed to drinking scenes in movies. This view is shared by Koordeman, Anschutz and Engels (2015) who illustrate that exposure to alcohol-related cues in film can be seen as an important motivator to
  35. 35. 25 continued alcohol use. Alcohol-related cues are frequently depicted in film, and might act as a trigger to consume alcohol (Dal Cin, Worth, Dalton & Sargent, 2008). Engles, Hermanes, Van Barren, Hollenstein and Bot (2009) conducted a study which compared a film with a high number of alcohol portrayals to a film with a low number of alcohol portrayals and then allowed the participants to drink alcohol during the films. The results of their study indicated that men drank twice as much when there was alcohol in the film, compared to when there was no alcohol in the film (Engels et al., 2009). A similar study by Koordeman et al. (2011) also revealed that drinking scenes lead to young adults consuming alcohol in greater amounts. The aforementioned studies disclose why the placement of a risky product like alcohol would lead the consumers expressing their concern towards product placement (Gupta & Gould, 1997). This also highlights the persuasive intent of product placement (De Lorme & Reid, 1999) and why people would feel very indifferent towards the practice (Schmoll et al., 2006). In 2004, reports suggested that young people worldwide were adopting potentially harmful patterns of alcohol consumption (World Health Organization, 2004). Movies can provide young people with information about the prevalence, acceptability and function of alcohol in social life (Dal Cin et al., 2008). As drinking is mostly portrayed in a positive light (Stoolmiller et al, 2012), movie alcohol exposure could influence a young adult’s beliefs about drinking which would make them more likely to use alcohol. In fact, it was revealed that PG-13 movies contained as much alcohol use and alcohol brand appearances as R rated movie (Dal Cin et al., 2008). PG-13 movie account for a greater proportion of alcohol exposure as young adults are more likely to view a PG-13 movie than an R-rated movie (Dal Cin et al., 2008). 3.5 Placement of Cigarettes in Film The National Cancer Institute of America cited in Chapman (2008) revealed that “the depiction of cigarette smoking is pervasive in movies, occurring in three quarters or more of modern-day box-office hits. Recognisable cigarette brands appear in one third of these movies. All the evidence from cross-sectional, longitudinal and experimental studies have indicated a causal relationship between exposure to depictions of smoking in movies and youth smoking initiation”. This is further backed up by a study
  36. 36. 26 carried out by Shmueli, Prochaska and Glantz (2010) who found that there is a link between smoking behaviour after viewing scenes where characters are smoking. However, smoking remains very common in films. Previous studies have shown that the volume of smoking and other related product placements in film, has increased as well as the levels of smoking among young adults after viewing these films (Schmidt, 2015). In fact, a report from Polansky et al. (2015) revealed that of the top 126 grossing movies from 2002 to 2013 tobacco brands were either shown or mentioned with Marlboro, Camel, Kool, Winston and Newport making up over 73% of the cigarette brands identified in movies. Marlboro and Camel are the two most recognised brands, as these are the most popular cigarettes of choice among youth smokers (Schmidt, 2015). It has been noted that smoking in young adult films (Pg-13, G etc..) has been declining (Polansky et al., 2015). However, the same report highlights that tobacco incidences (use of the product by an actor) has increased with one out of four PG-13 movies having more than fifty tobacco related incidents in 2013. Chapman (2008) highlights how if the portrayal of smoking in films would lead to that film acquiring an R-rated status just because of it’s potential to influence children and young adults to smoke, then immediate questions could arise of other potentially adverse role modelling cues in films. For example, if films with smoking scenes in them were to receive R-rated status, because of the health problems that smoking causes, then should films with crime, physical inactivity, excessive drinking, gambling and risk taking activities (seen in adventure films) be classed in the same category as smoking (Chapman, 2008). The result of a previous study details how visual cues of smoking in films triggered a young adults urge to smoke (Sargent, Morgenstern, Isensee, Hanewinkel, 2009). This is also highlighted in Shmueli et al., (2010) by stating people who watched scenes with smoking were a lot more likely to have a cigarette during the breaks. The more exposure of smoking in film relates directly to whether an adolescent will begin smoking (Dalton, et al., 2003). 3.6 Regulation of Product Placement In the US, product placements in television follow a more restrictive process than in movies because the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) look for specific identification of paid placements and it is often the case that the broadcast networks
  37. 37. 27 will look to limit placements in television (Karrh et al., 2001). This restriction from the FCC can pose a problem to companies trying to use paid placements to advertise their products but companies can offer networks their products free of charge so that they can be included in television shows (Ong, 2004). According to the European Union’s policies, if viewers are made aware of any product placement both before and after a production, then the placements will be permitted (WARC, 2010a). PQ media highlighted that this type of marketing is a lot more controversial in Europe than in America (WARC, 2010a). As such children’s programmes, documentaries and news shows were excluded from the list media outlets where the practice of product placement would be allowed (WARC, 2010a). More recently, restrictions have been loosened across Europe resulting in over $100 million in returns (WARC, 2012). From February 2011, television programmes in the UK were allowed to contain product placements, as long as they complied with Ofcom’s rules (WARC, 2014). ITV was the first broadcaster to feature product placements in a programme, with Nescafe Dolce Gusto (WARC, 2014). However, in 2012 in the UK, news and children’s shows were still not allowing product placements and regarding the television shows that were allowed to feature placements, certain brand categories such as alcohol, some soft drinks and snack foods were still prohibited (McClellan, 2012). In order for television productions to show product placement, the broadcaster will have to show a product placement logo at the beginning and end of each programme which will need to be on the screen for 3 seconds. The logo will also be featured during advertisement breaks (WARC, 2010b). Up until 2011, product placement was not allowed on Irish produced programmes but the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) reviewed its rules on the practice (Connolly, 2011). As a result of these new rules, product placement has gone from strength to strength on Irish television. TV3 were the first Irish broadcasters to make the breakthrough when branded Kenco mugs appeared on its Midday programme in 2011, while shortly after a new SPAR shop featured on RTE’s Fair City, where the state broadcaster received €900,000 for this deal (Quinlan, 2014). From here product placement has grown in Ireland. TV3 created a show which allowed brands to display their products on the set, this TV show turned out to be Red Rock (Quinlan, 2014).
  38. 38. 28 TV3 have shown the most faith in product placement of all the Irish broadcasters by developing their own special unit, TV3 Brand Solutions, to manage how the station incorporates brands into their shows (Quinlan, 2014). 3.7 Examples of Successful Product Placements Product placement has appeared in various media for years with a number of very successful cases highlighting the benefits of the practice. One of the most successful placements across the literature is Hersey’s Reece’s Pieces which featured in the movie “E.T” in 1982 resulting in a 65% increase in sales for the chocolate (Tsai, Liang & Liu, 2007 cited in Chan, 2012). Like Hershey’s Reece’s Pieces chocolate bar, Ray- Ban sunglasses experienced a surge in sales after been worn by Tom Cruise in the 1983 film, Risky Business, with sales skyrocketing to 360,000 pairs a year (Karniouchina, Uslay & Erenburg, 2011). Another example of a successful product placement was FedEx, who featured in the 2000 film “Cast Away”. Tom Hanks featured as a FedEx employee, who became stranded on a deserted island with a number of FedEx products. Throughout his stay on the island, these products help him to survive several times which resulted in the FedEx brand gaining valuable exposure throughout the film (Yang & Roskos-Ewoldsen, 2007; Shaw, 2001, cited in Wenner, 2004). It is believed that in order to get their product into the movie, FedEx paid for 80% of the production costs (Shaw, 2001, cited in Wenner, 2004). For ethically charged products, successful partnerships have been created between movie brands and alcohol brands. The most successful example is the partnership between James Bond and Heineken which has lasted more than seventeen years now (Heineken is Back with James Bond, 2015). In the 2012 film, Skyfall, it’s been revealed that Heineken paid the James Bond production $45 million to have the title character sip on their drink instead of the venerable vodka martini which 007 usually drinks (Radford, 2012). This placement was necessary to the studio as it covered a substantial amount of the $200 million production costs (Radford, 2012).
  39. 39. 29 3.8 Conclusion The practice of product placement is steeped in history as it began in the late 1800’s. Deals within the practice are constantly changing from bartering to lending to scripted to paid. At the moment, the worldwide spend on product placement is huge with countries who had previously banned the practice revising their laws so that they can reap the benefits which the practice provides. New forms of the practice, such as ‘advergaming’, are emerging to give marketers an even greater opportunity to sell their products. However, as product placement grows so too will the voices of critics who will fight for the laws to be tightened or have the practice banned. The practice will continue to influence a consumer’s intent to purchase which will bring both positive and negative results. Product placement will continue to be used as there have been numerous examples of its success over the years.
  40. 40. 30 Chapter 4: Methodology
  41. 41. 31 Research Methodology 4.1 Introduction: According to Saunders, Lewis and Thornhill (2012) the objective of this chapter is to provide sufficient information in order to make an estimate of the reliability and validity of the methods used and the trustworthiness of the findings. The general meaning of the term methodology explains how “research should be undertaken, including the theoretical and philosophical assumptions upon which research is based and the implications of these for the methods adopted” (Saunders et al., 2012). This chapter highlights how the data was collected and analysed while also detailing the technique and instruments used. 4.2 The Research Process: Numerous authors have designed very similar marketing research processes in order of sequence. Domegan and Fleming (2007) suggest a structure of the research process as follows: Fig 4.1. Source: Adapted from Domegan, C. & Fleming, D. (2007). Marketing Research in Ireland: Theory and Practice (3rd ed.) Dublin: Gill & Macmillan. Step 1 • ProblemDefinition Step 2 • Research Design Step 3 • Data CollectionMethods Step 4 • Sampling Step 5 • Fieldwork Step 6 • Analysis of Data Step 7 • Presentation of Results
  42. 42. 32 This research process was designed to capture the possible issues which may arise for the researcher when carrying out their research. Other authors, such as Saunders et al., (2009) highlight a similar sequence although their process has two minor variations. They count data collection and fieldwork as a single step and have sampling as the stage following on from this. 4.3 Research Question and Problem Definition Following on from the aforementioned sequence, the first step for the researcher to consider is the problem definition. Malhotra (2010) recommends that the research problem be a general declaration of the broad problem and recognition of the precise elements of the marketing research problem. Domegan and Fleming (2007) also suggest that this stage is focused around identifying the purpose of the research and through this process formulating a research hypothesis or a list of objectives. After consulting the existing body of knowledge on the topic, reviewing the literature and after serious consideration the researcher came up with four key objectives which will be addressed through primary research. These objectives will help guide the research with the end goal of answering the research question. 4.3.1 The Research Question Do ethically charged products in film have an effect on a millennials purchase intention? The chosen research question attempts to encompass all of the four following objectives into one. To answer this research question each of the objectives will have to be comprehensively addressed in the research formulation and data analysis sections. For this research millennials between the ages of 18-35 have been chosen as the target sample (Garikapati, et al., 2016). 4.3.2 Objective 1: To examine if there is a relationship between the role an ethically charged product plays on screen and a millennials purchase intention
  43. 43. 33 The aim of this objective is to gain an understanding into the role of a product on- screen and how it influences someone to purchase. As discussed in chapter two of this thesis, Kamleithner and Jyote (2013) reveal that the most important issue for marketers is how their product is used on screen. This could be through character interaction, plot connection or been visual in the background. Character interaction is the most likely to initiate a purchase according to the authors however, as far as the researcher is concerned there has been no prior research into an ethically charged products role on screen with regards to a millennials purchase intention. 4.3.3 Objective 2: To investigate if the activation of a consumer’s persuasion knowledge on an ethically charged product will lead to purchase intention If a consumer realises a products intent to sell to them then their persuasion knowledge has been activated to deal with this message. Friestad and Wright (1994) highlight that as the practice of product placement has evolved over time, so too has a consumer’s awareness of the message been broadcast to them. Therefore, the researcher has proposed three hypotheses’: H1: High persuasion knowledgeon an ethically charged product has a negative effect on purchase intention H1b: High persuasion knowledgeon an ethically charged product has a positive effect on purchase intention H10: High persuasion knowledge on an ethically charged product has no effect on purchase intention 4.3.4 Objective 3: To examine if the introduction of a disclaimer at the beginning of the film will have any effect on a consumer’s purchase intention Consumers mainly react positively towards product placement with the only downside being the ethical side of the practice (Nebenzahl & Secunda, 1993). Previous studies have suggested that a disclaimer at the beginning of the film is necessary to protect
  44. 44. 34 the consumer from the persuasive intent of product placement. However, marketers believe that alerting a consumer to a brand placement will have a negative effect on the intended message (Wei, et al., 2008). Therefore, the researcher has proposed three hypotheses’: H2: Alerting a consumer to product placement before the film will have a negative effect on purchase intention H2b: Alerting a consumer to product placement before the film will have a positive effect on purchase intention H20: Alerting a consumer to product placement before the film will have no effect on purchase intention 4.3.5 Objective 4: To investigate if there is any relationship between the consumer’s purchase intention after viewing an ethically charged product and the consumer’s gender Gupta and Gould (1997) highlight that males find the placing of ethically charged products more acceptable than females. However, this research was in terms of acceptability of an ethically charged product. Previous research by Koordeman et al, (2015) studied the effects of alcohol portrayal in films on young males. They found that young men had a higher alcohol consumption after viewing alcohol in a film. However, the researcher of this study has not found other literature regarding female consumption patterns. Also, the researcher is not aware of any literature on a specific genders intent to purchase after viewing an ethically charged product. 4.4 Research Design: When designing this research, the researcher used the research “onion” suggested by Saunders et al. (2012). In using this method, the first aspect of the research that needs to be decided is the philosophy. This will then be followed by the approach, strategy, choice and technique.
  45. 45. 35 Fig 4.2. Source: Adapted from Saunders, M., Lewis, P., & Thornhill, A (2012). Research Methods for Business Students: Sixth Edition (6th Ed.), England: FT: Prentice Hall. According to Saunders et al. (2012) the research design is crucial to the success of the research project. They highlight that the researcher’s choice of design should be influenced by their research objectives and that each type of research design should be carefully considered before settling on the most appropriate design. Saunders et al., (2012) highlight three types of research design to be considered; Exploratory, Descriptive and Explanatory. 4.4.1 Exploratory An exploratory research design is an appropriate research design when the researcher wants to gain further insights into a topic of interest. It could be a useful research design when dealing with new phenomena that are not clearly defined and where there is scarcely any previous knowledge in existing literature. There are a number of ways to conduct exploratory research; reviewing the literature, interviewing experts in the subject and conducting focus group interviews, exploratory research can offer the researcher a greater understanding into the problem as new insights are presented to
  46. 46. 36 you (Saunders et al., 2012). By choosing exploratory research, one of the advantages to the researcher is that it is flexible and adaptable to change which could be very useful when new information becomes available to you. This highlights how the researcher could begin with a broad focus but will then be able to narrow their focus as the research progresses (Saunders et al., 2012). 4.4.2 Descriptive The object of descriptive research is to gain an accurate profile of events, persons or situations (Saunders et al., 2012, p171). This design usually involves the gathering of quantitative data that then describes the characteristics of various aspects such as a consumer’s demographics and attitudes towards a product. Initial research is important when using this design as the gathered data must be clearly defined prior to the descriptive research method being conducted. As exploratory research tends to identify certain relationships between variables, descriptive research aims to determine the extent of these variable relationships. Therefore, sample sizes will be much larger in descriptive research than exploratory (Saunders et al., 2012). 4.4.3 Explanatory Explanatory research aims to establish causal relationships between variables (Saunders et al., 2012). The emphasis on this research is studying a situation or problem in order to explain the relationships between variables. Correlation tests could be used to provide a more detailed and explanatory account of these relationships (Saunders et al., 2012). Researchers could also opt to use explanatory research for conducting a qualitative study in order to explain the relationships between variables gathered through descriptive research (Saunders et al., 2012). 4.4.4 Research Choice: The research design chosen for this study is descriptive. This is due to the fact that the research aims to portray an accurate account of how the usage of ethically charged products in film can impact millennials purchase intentions. This study will focus on identifying and describing the relationships between gender, the role of the product
  47. 47. 37 and purchase intention. This research will also involve some aspects of explanatory research as the relationships between the variables will be examined to provide a more detailed account through the use of correlation tests. Saunders et al., (2012: p171) describe the combination of descriptive and explanatory research designs as ‘descripto-explanatory’. 4.5 Research Philosophy: As discussed by Saunders et al. (2012) the philosophical approach undertaken by a researcher tends to support the strategy of the research. The research philosophy for any piece of research is usually a reflection of how the researcher views the world, which reflects onto the choices made during the research process and is also used to defend the outcomes of the research (Saunders et al., 2012). The research philosophy is usually formed by the researcher’s belief of two major philosophical assumptions: ontology and epistemology. Ontology usually refers to the researcher’s belief about the nature of reality (Lee & Lings, 2008) while epistemology refers to what the researcher constitutes as acceptable knowledge in a field of study (Saunders et al., 2012). If the researcher has an ontology perspective, then the two aspects that will be studied are; objectivism and subjectivism (Saunders et al., 2012). The objectivist view deals with what is physically real (Maylor & Blackmon, 2005) while the subjectivist view highlights how reality is a projection of human imagination (Collis & Hussey, 2003). There are three different epistemological perspectives to consider: positivism, realism and interpretivism (Saunders et al., 2012). Each paradigm has their own strengths and weaknesses when specifically associated with a research question. In marketing research, positivism and interpretivism are considered to be the main paradigms of research philosophy (Malhotra, Birks & Wills, 2012). Therefore, these two paradigms will be outlined below followed by the researcher’s choice between the two for this thesis.
  48. 48. 38 4.5.1 Positivism: From the epistemological research philosophies available in figure 2, the researcher decided that the most appropriate philosophy for this research is positivism. This is due to the researcher being objective in their approach and independent of and unaffected by the research subject. The positivism approach will enable the researcher to observe reality and search for causal relationships (Saunders et al., 2012). As a positivist, the research strategy is aimed at developing hypotheses based on the secondary data critically reviewed before commencing the research. In order to produce credible data, a research strategy was created using existing theory which in turn developed hypotheses. The researcher will play an external role in the gathering of data (Saunders et al, 2012). The central assertion of this approach is that the study of marketing phenomena should be scientific in nature. The positivist approach assumes a structure that focuses on ‘facts’ which leads to emphasis upon objectivity, rigour and measurement (Saunders et al., 2012). 4.5.2 Interpretivism: The interpretivist researcher is interested in entering the world of their subjects in the research and understanding it in the same way that they do (Saunders et al., 2012). Interpretivist researchers are considered to be subjectivist researchers as they focus on understanding and investigating meanings, unlike objective researchers. Qualitative methods such as in-depth interviews are the most popular approach with this philosophy (Saunders et al., 2012). 4.5.3 Research choice: Due to the present study focusing on the consumer’s behaviour with regards to their purchase intentions after viewing an ethically charged product, the research will therefore be concerned with explanation and examination rather than the investigation of a ‘meaning’ of the phenomena. Therefore, the philosophy which is best suited for this research is positivism.
  49. 49. 39 4.6 Research Approach The researcher must consider the relationship between the theory and research. Bryman and Bell (2011) highlight two different views of this relationship, deductive and inductive. A deductive approach is when the theory guides the method of data collection and data analysis while an inductive approach is when the theory is the result of the research. The literature review and contextual analysis of this research project have discussed the theory which informed the research question and research objectives. As a result, it is appropriate for the researcher of this paper to conduct a deductive approach to test the theory. According to Saunders et al. (2012) before proceeding with the research, the researcher needs to consider four aspects of the deductive approach. Firstly, they highlight that a structured methodology is very important and will ensure reliability of data. For this research project, the researcher has chosen Saunders et al.’s (2012) research onion to ensure that the methodology is structured which in turn should ensure reliable data. The second aspect of deduction is ‘operationalized’ which deals with the measurement of facts. The research question, “Do ethically charged products placement in film have an effect on millennials purchase intention?” makes a deductive assumption that ethically charged products have an effect on purchase intention, resulting in the measurement of this fact. Thirdly, ‘reductionism’ refers to the reduction of the problem to its simplest form. The research question has reduced the practice of product placement to just focus on ethically charged products. The final characteristic of deduction is ‘generalisation’. Researchers who use a deductive approach must make generalisations so that they carefully select a sample and a sample strategy in order to produce valid results and generalisations (Saunders et al., 2012). 4.7 Research Strategy In order to answer the research questions and meet the objectives set out for this study, the research strategy which was chosen was online surveys. Surveys are a popular choice for a descriptive research design as it allows you to collect quantitative data which you can then analyse quantitatively using descriptive and inferential statistics (Saunders et al., 2012). Surveys also allow the collection of standardised data from a sizeable population in a highly economical way, which allows for easy comparison (Saunders et al., 2012; p177). The data collected using a survey strategy allows the
  50. 50. 40 researcher to suggest possible reasons for particular relationships between variables and to produce models of these relationships (Saunders et al., 2012). The survey should also allow for the researcher to have more control over the research process and when sampling is used it should create findings that are representative of the whole population at a lower cost than collecting data for the whole population (Saunders et al., 2012). Surveys are designed to provide numerical descriptions of attitudes or opinions of a selected population and can then draw generalisations from the data of the sample population. With the aim of this study been to draw generalisations from a selected sample of the population on millennials attitudes towards ethically charged products in film, and to determine if these factors have an impact on their purchase intentions after viewing these products in films, then survey questionnaires are the perfect research tool to obtain the required data. There are drawbacks in using this research strategy as questionnaires might only be completed partially or some answers could be inappropriate to the research. Also the response rate could be very low which would lead to an inability to gather enough in-depth information for the research project. 4.8 Time Horizon According to Saunders et al., (2012) there are two ways to choose a time horizon: Longitudinal or cross-sectional. A longitudinal study measures the relationships between variables over a certain amount of time, while a cross-sectional study is described as a ‘snapshot’, since the description of variables and their association is at a specific moment in time (Domegan & Flemming, 2007). Therefore, cross-sectional studies are generally conducted on a specific time and phenomenon. Due to the limited amount of time to collect data before the deadline, the researcher chose a cross- sectional study. 4.9 Data Collection 4.9.1 Secondary Data: As descriptive research aims to quantify a predefined research problem or situation, secondary data is crucial to the success of descriptive research (Saunders et al., 2012).
  51. 51. 41 Secondary data refers to the existing data that has been collected which is relevant to the research problem being studied. This data needs to be analysed in order to provide additional knowledge, interpretations and conclusions (Saunders et al., 2012). For the purpose of this study, existing literature on product placement and ethically charged products was reviewed extensively as well as its effects on persuasion knowledge and purchase intention. The majority of the referenced data was taken from peer reviewed articles while other information was found through primary sources such as Mintel, WARC and Euromonitor reports. The bibliographies of the peer reviewed articles enabled the researcher to discover even more relevant secondary information. The literature provided the researcher with valuable insights into their research and was one of the main factors in the researcher’s choice of methodology. 4.9.2 Primary Data: Primary data was gathered through quantitative research. A quantitative approach was chosen as the researcher is interested in studying the effects of ethically charged products on a sample population. The majority of authors who have also studied the effects of product placement have used quantitative research which should help compare the findings of this study with the findings in the existing literature. Therefore, this study should be able to offer a more comprehensive and valuable contribution to the existing literature. Due to this the researcher believes that quantitative research is the most effective method for this study. 4.9.3 Sampling Plan A key aspect to the conducting of this research is the sample from which the data will be gathered. A sampling strategy must be constructed to facilitate the research being conducted which in turn should lead to valid and reliable data that can be generalised and conclusions formed. The sampling strategy that this research will adopt is a non- probability sampling strategy (Bryman & Bell, 2011). The chosen sample comprised solely of millennials while the questionnaire was distributed on Facebook. Garikapati et al., (2016) refer to a millennial being anyone born between the years 1979-2000. For this research project the researcher decided that when referring to millennials, they
  52. 52. 42 were referring to anyone between the ages of 18-35 as these age ranges were more obtainable than 16-37. This non-probability sampling technique should ensure that all responses to the questionnaire are valid while also minimizing bias by not approaching any particular respondents and merely placing the survey on Facebook and offering its users the option to volunteer to respond to the survey questionnaire if they choose to do so. Since respondents are volunteering to do the research, this should strengthen the validity of the responses since it ensures that each respondent is prepared and committed to responding and therefore is more likely to provide truthful answers (Bryman & Bell, 2011). Due to limited resources and time available the sample size was constrained. For this study a sample size of 170 participants was considered to be sufficient in order to provide adequate data for data analysis. Although this sample size can be considered too small for statistical significance, the researcher considered it to be an attainable number due to the time constraints. 4.9.4 Questionnaire Design The questionnaire was designed as a self-administered, internet-mediated questionnaire (Saunders et al., 2012). The questionnaire was constructed using Qualtrics, which is an online survey website. Qualtrics was chosen ahead of other internet survey platforms because it offers a wide range of analysis for the data generated and is also able to export the data to statistical packages, such as SPSS which is the preferred statistical package for this research. The sample was targeted through the posting and distribution of the questionnaire on Facebook ensuring that the respondents were members of the population in question. To ensure that the participants fully understood the context of the survey and in order to define any technical terms, a brief introduction was included at the beginning of the questionnaire. The introduction was short and had clear sentences, explaining to the participants the overall aim of the research. The brief also included contact information for participants to reach the researcher in case they had any further inquiries and also emphasized the anonymity of all the data that is gathered (See Appendices).

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