When a brand is mentioned in your favorite artist’s lyrics, are you motivated to go out and buy it? Do you instantly fall in love with the product or brand when you see your favorite artist with it in their hot new music video?   If you answered yes to these questions, you are not alone: Many consumers flock to the stores to buy the products that their favorite celebrity endorses.

Music lyrics and music videos have become an extremely prevalent medium for product placement in recent years attributed not only to the clutter of commercials on television, but also to the rise in popularity of digital video, today’s mainstay of consumer exposure to music videos.  Many times when there is a mention of a product in a recording artist’s lyrics, it is merely the artist naming one of their much-loved products they use in daily life, such as Run-DMC rapping about their favorite shoe brand. But there are also times when your favorite artist may have exaggerated their actual love of a brand for a pay check.  American Brandstand, a project that tracked product placement in music lyrics, found that in 2003, the Billboard top 20 songs had 82 product placements.

Music videos are often viewed as a way for artists to express their creativity, but more and more, brands are seeing music video product placement as a way to gain significant consumer exposure.

Music also allows brands a driving point of passion to engage with consumers.   Because of this, brand exposure in a music video has the potential to far outreach what can be secured through a product placement in a movie or TV show, with an impact not just on a national scale, but crossing over language barriers to consumers around the world.

The huge popularity and viewership of online video content allows for amazing opportunities for brands interested in targeting core consumers through music video product placement today.  When you place your product in a music video or lyrics of a song, the advertisement is there forever.  Consumers cannot simply skip the advertisement and are more likely to actually trust the opinion of the artist promoting the brand in the song or video. Music also allows brands to target consumers by age, sex, music taste and even specific psychographic detail.

Product placement in music videos used to be restricted in the days of MTV when videos were played in heavy rotation.  MTV restricts brands and logos from appearing in most of the content shown on air, unless the brand is a TV Network advertiser to the tune of 7 figures or more.  In these cases, MTV restricts what will be visible on air – often ‘greeking’ or blurring out the brand’s logo.  However, MTV distribution of the video is miniscule compared to what the digital consumption is.  The internet has changed those rules through sites like VEVO and Youtube, which allow product placement and are a popular way to view music videos.

The current music video views record, held by Miley Cyrus for “Wrecking Ball,” is at a staggering 172,543,637 views.  After the Busta Rhymes song “Pass the Courvoisier,” sales for the liquor brand increased by 4.5 percent.  Lady Gaga has a world-wide cult following and generated 4 million views on YouTube during the first 24 hours of her music video “Telephone.” The video, which featured many product placements, now has reached over 176,000,000 consumers, a CPM of less than 90 cents.

Whether you “Pass the Courvoisier”or love stomping in your “Air Force Ones,” product placement has a huge influence on consumer’s behaviors.  Product placement in music has the potential to build brand awareness among new audiences and help strengthen brand recognition.  A brand can continue to leverage the music video’s consumer marketing success through integrated marketing campaigns with the artist, social media contests, and call outs surrounding the music video, a digital media advertising campaign preceding the digital viewing, and more.  Music and brand partnerships are here to stay, and will only continue to grow and further develop into extremely strategic business models.

References: NY Times, How Stuff Works, Wired, MTV, The Null Device Blog, Advertising Age, Assurance Advertising, Luxury Daily