In my most recent e-newsletter from MediaPost, one of the feature stories discussed how much power kids have in getting their parents to buy them "stuff." The story stated that every one in three parents are "significantly influenced by their kids when it comes to choosing brands." Everything to fruit snacks to light-up shoes to the latest video game, a majority of kids demand that they want something, and then they get it. I then thought to myself, what an incredible opportunity for product placement! Show Spongebob sporting some Nike's or Raven eating at Burger King. Kids will see the shoes or the restaurant and demand the folks for it.
However, as I found out, product placement is illegal to use to market to children. Children's minds are not fully developed and they may not understand "the nature of product placement or recognize it." Therefore, the media has declared it illegal because it can misinform and misconstrue children's perceptions of a product they see in their favorite show. Bummer for product placement!
So, if product placement cannot be used for kids, is there a way to at least make it work some way? Well, there is. We need to reach those parents who are easily swayed by their children! These people actually have a name: child influenced shoppers. The article stated some cool facts that clearly infer that product placement would be a great tool to use to attract these people because they are:
A) Two times as likely to agree as the average U.S. adult that if they see a brand name product on a TV show, they are reassured it is a good product.
B) Twice as likely to agree as the average U.S. adult that if they see a brand name product on a TV show they are more likely to buy that product than a competitor's brand.
C) More than two times as likely to agree as the average U.S. adult that if they see a character in a movie use a brand-name product they have never tried before, they are likely to try it.
All of the above is product placement at its best. Therefore, while we may not be capable of reaching kids through the practice, we can at least grab their susceptible parents. Be sure to check out the article yourself, very insightful.