Nielsen Drills Down Into Plugs

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Nielsen will look beyond product placements to study the behavioral response to all those Coke can-carrying American Idols.

While Nielsen has been tracking the physical placement of products in TV shows since the 2003-2004 season, the company is launching a study to gauge the context of the placement and its relative impact on consumers (i.e., jarring, seamless, off-putting).

In essence, the goal is to find what kind of product in what kind of setting works best in what kind of show, then quantify that for advertisers, refining what Jo Ann Ross, president of CBS Television Network Sales, calls "the science of product integration."

Study backers include CBS/UPN, Discovery, The Weather Channel, Magna Global, Media Com, Zenith Optimedia and Sprint.

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