Initially I was very annoyed that Ashton Kutcher’s company was selected as one of the 50 most innovative startups at TechCrunch50 and I largely still am. However, after I learned that the primary monetization for the site’s video content was via product placement, it really got me thinking.
If the future of media is video and content creation on the web, and if said distribution necessitates use of many different sites (i.e. not walled gardens), than the future of advertising could really be product placements.
What does this mean? I think it means opportunity.
One of the great things about product placements is that there is almost unlimited potential for availability; a movie script could literally have hundreds of placements if folks were willing to invest the time to tweak sets and wardrobes. Alternatively, an entrepreneur could just automate the process and help to set market rates.
As an example, take a look at the image up top. It’s a blueprint showing areas where advertisements could be served on a blog. Why couldn’t this same blueprint idea be applied to scripts, or even spontaneous daily web shows? It would sweet if I could go to a marketplace and buy spots for product placements; maybe actors wearing LeveragingIdeas T-Shirts? As a buyer, I could look at stats for demographics, traffic, etc for syndicated shows, or I could be more risky and take a chance on a one-off event or viral video. Maybe it gets huge traffic, maybe it doesn’t. Of course product placements can’t be as precise as web ads where you only pay when someone clicks. Still the opportunity could be huge for targeting, engagement and the long tail.
Seems to me like there is big opportunity here for someone, if such things don’t already exist.