Keebler's star turn in the series' finale last week, however, was in-your-face even by today's relaxed "product-integration" standards. Tough cop Lt. Provenza (played by G.W. Bailey) munched a cookie and proudly cradled the Keebler Sandies package, brand name out front, as the camera zoomed in. The scene was close to a commercial break with — surprise! — a Sandies ad.
TNT spokeswoman Jenn Toner says The Closer's product placements (there are others) are "organic" and that the ad and creative teams "work very closely" to be sure the storyline is never compromised.
Besides, she points out, the finale drew 9.2 million live plus same-day DVR viewers. That's a record for ad-supported cable, so it "looks like all is going well."
Flapping in the wind. Those flimsy, open-back hospital "gowns" are an indignity you wouldn't normally want to associate with your brand. But ABC and TV Guide are sending them to about 100,000 New York and Los Angeles TV Guide subscribers. The Grey's Anatomy-branded paper smocks will arrive with the Sept. 24 issue to promote the new season.
While the garment may not conjure up fond memories, Ad Team research found that wearing one instead of jeans and a T-shirt for prime-time TV would shave 27 seconds off a commercial bathroom break — enough time to hit the refrigerator, too, before settling back onto the couch.
Seats to make you blue with envy. TV maker Samsung has determined the optimum movie-watching spot — where video and audio is best — in 53 Landmark Theatres' screening rooms across the country and installed a pair of blue, Samsung-branded seats on the spot.
"Our intention is to show our audience that we provide the best seat in the house, whether in the theater or at home," says marketing director Kris Narayanan. The seats and site blueseat.com are part of a Samsung and Landmark effort to promote independent films, starting with Sean Penn's Into the Wild, opening this week.
Narayanan says occupiers of the blue chairs will sometimes get little surprises (like free refreshments — not gum stuck under the seat).
By Laura Petrecca
Q. Who is the model in the Rembrandt Teeth Whitening Strips ad — and did that lion really lick her cheek?
A. Rembrandt tries to illustrate its message of strong but gentle with beautiful white lion Lufuno (one of just 25 white lions in the world) nuzzling Ashley Hartman. In fact, the model got the job because Lufuno took a liking to Hartman at her audition, says Shannon Brennan, a spokeswoman for Johnson & Johnson, which bought Rembrandt from Gillette in 2006. Lufuno's gentle kiss is for real — and not scripted. The lion went for it on his own.
Q. How can one find the name of the song used in a TV ad? Is there a website?
A. "What's that tune?" is one of the most frequent Ask the Ad Team queries. Numerous sites list the artist and song title, particularly when pop music is used, and music labels and artists increasingly see ad use as good promotion.
"Advertising is one of the best places to learn about new music," says Josh Rabinowitz, director of music at New York ad agency Grey Worldwide, home of advertising's largest in-house music department.
Also, if the music is a big enough part of a campaign, it may be identified on the advertiser's website.