- Marketing tie-ins, like those around movies such as “Avengers: Endgame,” are becoming more popular in TV, thanks to streaming-video services like Netflix and blockbuster series like “Stranger Things” and HBO’s “Game of Thrones.”
- “Streaming is much more like movies than it is TV shows, to me,” one marketing exec said.
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Streaming video and blockbuster series like Netflix’s “Stranger Things” and HBO’s “Game of Thrones” are opening the door for more marketing tie-ins to TV shows.
People are accustomed to seeing cross-promotions between major movies like “Avengers: Endgame” or “Toy Story 4” and brands like Walmart, Coca-Cola, or Chrysler. But fewer of those deals exist in TV, where the commercial break reigns supreme.
That’s not to say brands don’t have a long history of collaborating with TV shows. Marketers have been sponsoring TV productions since at least the 1950s when soap makers like P&G sponsored daytime dramas, dubbed “soap operas.” Product placements are also popular ways of bringing in extra money or offsetting the costs of TV productions.
But marketing tie-ins off of the network, such as featuring a TV character in a marketer’s ad or in a retail space, haven’t historically been as popular. It’s easier for brands to roll out campaigns around a single, theatrical release date of a movie than a full season of a show.
Marketing tie-ins for specific shows can also conflict with the ads already sold across the TV networks. For that reason, TV networks tend to look for big-ticket deals that may include integrations into the show itself, promotional ads on the TV network, and other components.
“Everything is so traditionally advertising driven and [TV networks] haven’t really seen the light of how to get away from those models,” Stacy Jones, CEO of entertainment-marketing agency Hollywood Branded, told Business Insider. “It’s either super over-the-top, in-your-face integrations on your primary network … or it’s nothing.”