Media Watch: The power of product placement
By April Forristall, SeafoodSource assistant editor
26 June, 2012
Beverage and car companies can pay a hefty sum to get their brand featured in a movie or on a TV show. But, earlier this month, Tassal got the same exposure free of charge.
The Tasmanian salmon farmer became a production partner on MasterChef Australia, with its product featured in two episodes in June. MasterChef is one of the country’s most popular cooking shows.
But just how much of an impact does product placement have?
“[MasterChef Austrlia] has ignited a deep passion amongst Australians for entertainment through cooking competitions,” said Caroline Hounsell, senior marketing manager for Tassal. “The show delivers a combination of talented amateur cooking alongside the incredible skills of internationally renowned chefs. Teaming up with a show like this exposes Tassal salmon to a huge nationwide audience that is on an exciting culinary journey with the contestants. It also aligns our brand with this kitchen magic.
“It’s an opportunity to showcase the versatility of salmon,” she continued. “Each contestant was required to create their own unique dish, and Tassal was delighted to see the depth of creativity and variety of cooking techniques used. The speed at which contestants were required to prepare their dish also demonstrated how easy it is to use this protein — it can be as low maintenance or challenging as the individual cook so desires.”
And Tassal’s exposure on the show hasn’t just been limited to its product. The brand was featured during the show’s week-long focus on the home state of Tassal, which taps into positively perceived attributes such as regional produce, heritage and premium quality. Additionally, contestants joined one of the judges and travelled by boat to a Tassal hatchery, where they were required to “literally fish for their dish.”
“This was an opportunity to showcase the pristine environment of Tassal as well as the sustainable farming condition, both messages which are very important to the business,” said Hounsell. “Being able to demonstrate all these features via impartial third parties while also being caught up in the fun and entertainment of the show in general is a powerful endorsement of the product.
“We expect to see a lift in awareness levels of salmon and of the Tassal brand, which will translate into a sales uplift,” she said.
But beyond an anticipated sales increase, the company hopes that exposure on the show will highlight the importance of sustainable seafood. Tassal has recently entered into a partnership with World Wildlife Fund Australia to help the company achieve sustainable aquaculture production.
“Tassal has implemented a raft of policies and procedures to improve environmental performance that ensure we are one of the most diligent and accountable operators in Australian aquaculture. Partnering with WWF on our sustainability journey will deliver even more opportunities to continue down this path,” said Hounsell.
26 June, 2012