The next time you see a film at the cinemas, pay close attention to the props used. Chances are, they will be brands that you have either not seen or heard of before, and by the look of things, a large number of them will be brands from China.

According to a report by The Financial Times, Chinese brands are looking to product placement campaigns in Hollywood films to push their products into the Western market and to raise the profile of these brands both at home and internationally. Brands like clothing firm Meters/bonwe, electronics companies Lenovo and TCL and dairy brand Yili all have a strong presence in the latest of the Transformers series,Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon.

Meters/bonwe was one of the first Chinese brands to successfully land a presence in Hollywood production with the second offering of Transformers, where the brand dressed the leading actor Shia LeBeouf.

Didi Zhang of Ogilvy & Mather Beijing, representing Lenovo, said: “The main motivation is to expand their brand recognition in foreign markets, but for others the focus is on the domestic market because the effect with foreign movies is better”. Lenovo has one of their laptop PCs transform into a robot in the film.

Zhang also predicted that the product placement effort made in this film will speed up the trend for Chinese brands to invest in a global film presence.

Morgan Spurlock, director and star of documentary Super Size Me is releasing a new film about product placement in Hollywood called POM Wonderful presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold.

Josh Rosenzweig, vice president of international business at POM Wonderful, a fruit beverage company that bought the title naming sponsorship for the film said toMarketing: “POM Wonderful has done some product placement in the US on television and in some films, but participating at the level we did with POM Wonderful presents the Greatest Movie Ever Sold was uncharted territory for us. But part of being successful is taking chances and trying different things”.

The brand has committed US$1 million to the film, and a month after the film’s debut in the US, it has generated more than 1 billion impressions for the brand.


POM Wonderful presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold opens in NSW, Victoria and Western Australia from 11 August at participating cinemas

Belle Kwan
BY Belle Kwan ON 26 July 2011
Assistant editor, Marketing magazine &
A marketer's dream who believes everything she sees on TV.
Advertising is not evil, it is an artform and a science.