Ad creep—where commercial messages are placed in previously uncommercialised zones—has been on the rise for years as consumers increasingly turn away from traditional media. There have been ads on Japanese schoolgirls’ thighs, on foreheads, on lakes and practically anywhere else a pair of human eyes might be forced into seeing an ad. Product placement is one of the biggest areas of focus and big bucks are spent to get brands into movies, TV shows and, increasingly, games. So, given the music industry’s relatively parlous state, it’s not entirely surprising to see that Universal Music is doing everything it can to get some extra cash, including letting brands pay to be retroactively included in its previously released music videos.
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Product placement like you’ve never seen (or heard)