The Art of Product Placement without the Product

ICONOCLASTS, the six-part original series produced by Grey Goose Entertainment and Sundance Channel is one of our favorite product placement stories of the year.

If you’ve seen the show, you are probably questioning our sanity. If you haven’t, then we have to tell you that in the hour long episode, there isn’t a single Grey Goose product shot (except for the footage of the pre-show VIP party).

The show is about… “Twelve of the most fearless and relentlessly innovative forces of our time meet one-on-one to explore their shared passions. They are ICONOCLASTS - individuals of singular vision who have transformed the cultural landscape.

Each episode of ICONOCLASTS brings together two innovative leaders from different fields including film and television, architecture and design, fashion, food, music, and sports and presents an intimate, unpredictable portrait of today's provocative creative leaders.

R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe bears his soul to executive chef and restaurateur Mario Batali. Fashion designer Tom Ford shares his inspiration with artist Jeff Koons. Screen legend Samuel L. Jackson plays verbal one-on-one with sports legend Bill Russell. Oscar®-winning producer Brian Grazer holds forth with corporate CEO Sumner Redstone.” And the grand finale, Robert Redford on Paul Newman.

All of the individuals featured in ICONOCLASTS represent their own distinctly powerful and successful brand names. Redstone, Redford, Newman, Ford, Jackson and Grazer, are all A-List talents with resumes that prove they got to the top of their class, their own way.

Grey Goose’s brand values- ambition, success, style, passion, luxury and creativity all overflow from this compelling investigation on the subject of what makes people successful. And, the producers at Grey Goose even created their own term to define success while pocketing an invaluable Hollywood producer credit.

The show was supported in print magazine (a beautiful color spread in The New Yorker), online, consumer promotions (“Live Like the Iconoclasts”), industry newsletters (Cynthia Turner Cynopsis) and of course, television ads. In the print ads, Mark Selinger provides the powerful and romantic imagery of the stars. His portraits are book-ended by beautiful shots of the Grey Goose vodka bottle suggesting that every one of these living legends returns home to enjoy their favorite Grey Goose martini.

The more prevalent product placement becomes in our industry, the more difficult it becomes for a brand to break through. Grey Goose hit a product placement homerun with this promotional activation without compromising their brand's credibility or values or ramming their message down the consumers’ throat.

Congratulations Grey Goose and Sundance- can’t wait to see what you have (or don’t have) onscreen for us in 2006.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great catch!

Just saw signs for the show on a bus in Midtown. Your insight is right on, Grey Goose is proving why they are a billion dollar brand.

3:29 PM  
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