Product placement is the act of showing or using a product with its makers brand obvious, with this deployed in entertainment (movies and TV shows) as well as live events and sports. Now Apple being the premium largely popular brand it is would they pay for product placement?
My first thoughts on this is no. A wide range of shows and movies have Apple products in them, defined Apple products with their logos showing that is. House of cards, Brooklyn 99, House, Mission: Impossible: Ghost Protocol, Selfless, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1, Thor and 30 rock plus so many more feature an Apple product with full logo in sight.
Would Apple have paid for this? I actually do doubt it, being the more or even most premium smart phone and tech maker giving kit bags and boxes filled with Iphones, Ipads, Iwatches and Macbooks to movie sets and TV series to use and show is possible. Giving away your premium goods is a good way to get them used, Would a movie star using a Samsung phone take away from his role? Maybe not but having the superhero wear an Iwatch adds some flair.
This giving your products away to be used by influencers heavily in the spotlight is similar to Samsung’s goody bags to Olympians which you do wonder how those devices ended up. Brand awareness is powerful, combine that with a genre or relevancy to what the brands strong perceptions are and you have a very strong marketing strategy that can create an even stronger brand image.
Product Placement in entertainment is free advertising and mass advertising too that can stay relevant for years. Think about how many times you have viewed 5 or 6 year old movies. No one else can take your advertising spot in a movie once it’s produced, You have your products in the background, being used and worn by the characters it’s a perfect fit (no pun intended).
If Apple really doesn’t pay for product placement kudos to them, but gifting products to be used technically is paying (production cost) but that’s not the point. The point is how strong Apples brand image is and its perception from consumers about quality and being a premium brand makes movie and series directors want the Apple brand in their production.
Maybe Apple just got fed up with all the silver laptops in movies with a strange sticker centered on its lid, we all know its Apple but the logo is covered. “Lets just send them our goods and have that Apple logo in full display, Saturate scene’s and let Samsung know we had a victory.” That’s how it goes.