Screenist: The (R)evolution of Product Placement

Admit it. We all hate ads, right? We bump into one on tv, and leave the room right away and grab a beer. True. Most of us are “banner-blind” when browsing the net, and we even skip the 30-second spots before videos, if those are not banned altogether. But then what’s the proper way to approach the average consumer, and make them even grateful for the chance of learning about a new product? The key lies in product placement - something that is already so much more than what it used to be.

Let’s just take a look at the history of Product Placement. It’s not a 20th-century idea, and it’s not even linked to motion picture: when Jules Verne published the novel Around the World in Eighty Days in 1873, shipping companies were lobbying to be mentioned in the story, whereas the first Hollywood-movie with a Hershey-bar was Wings in 1927.

In the beginning, during the era of silent movies in the 1920s, the logos of certain products or later the products themselves appeared in the background solely to make the story more realistic, to make spectators believe that whatever they see on the screen is true. “This whole thing is happening right here, right now, and she is using the exact same washing gel you do” - this was the message these flashes sent. This was the era of passive product placements with not much of a business-mind behind the logos and the products in the background.

It didn’t take too long to notice that drinks and cigarettes linked to Hollywood-stars are the most attractive items for spectators, and those few-second-long flashes definitely shape consumer attitude a great deal. By the beginning of the 60’s, a complete industry was built around product placement. First the aim was simply to enhance brand recognition by showing the item as often as possible, but the next step was already about the conscious integration of the product into the storyline: the item is an integral part of the script at this stage, it can even be the essence of character, like Omega watches in James Bond-movies, or a bottle of Tuborg in our Danish comedy Olsen-band.

Product placement in films, source: YouTube


By the beginning of the 2000’s, it became clear that not only the product but the brand could also be integrated into the story, which led to a number of hilarious scenes as it’s obvious that this type of image building does not always sit well with the artistic concept. Movies like The Internship, celebrating the corporate culture of Google received plenty of rotten tomatoes, whereas Red Bull’s famous Project Stratos was a huge success. Nowadays an agency behind a top-notch production is pleased if the production team and the brand manage to co-operate in such a way that the brand and the product linked to the brand is woven into the storyline in a creative way, while the spectator-consumer is happy to get high-quality, value-driven, exciting content. Something they have a great time watching, reading, something they can relate to.

We are talking a huge market: in the US, companies spend 67 billion dollars on advertisement every year. According to a survey by PQ Media, the product placement-market grew by 13.7 percent in 2017. These numbers are expanding rapidly: in 2012, companies spent 4.75 billion dollars on product placement, while this number is expected to reach 11.44 billion by 2019.

And what about efficiency? A 2017 survey interviewed Americans only to find out that 77 percent of them know what product placement is, and 80 percent of those asked are influenced by it in one way or the other.

Sounds good, right? The only problem is that the highest level of product placement - as that’s what we are talking about here - is only available for the lucky few: you need a professional sales-team, a creative team, and tons of money to make it work. No wonder that only some 3 percent of YouTube-vloggers make decent money in the 4 or even 5 figure range: content creators on a budget have no chance to work with a team of this caliber, thus they obviously make less money as a result.


At least that’s how it used to be: Screenist makes high quality, premium product placement available for basically anybody.

The cool thing about Screenist is not just the fact that it transforms a viewer into a consumer, offering them the gift of impulse-purchases in the online world where it was previously an unknown concept, but it also opens new gates for advertisers: information based on big data show them the best conversion, and the video ads bidding system based on blockchain takes the consumer to the webshop offering the most for the given product placement.

This revolutionary change previously unknown to the world of advertisement not only has the chance to make product placement more cost-efficient but thanks to the better conversion, may also reach a wider audience. This way, it's easy to introduce a given product even to YouTube or Instagram users - and all they need to do is click to purchase the object of their dreams, even as an impulse.

The Screenist blockchain technology transforms the way people buy and sell

This is how an idea - merely serving to make the content appear more realistic - turns into the world's coolest online store… and perhaps the best part is that it's available for anyone, and you don't even need billions of dollars for that.