Move to end ban on product placement divides opinion

Respondents to online poll mirror views of the TV broadcasting industry.

Ben Bradshaw
Ben Bradshaw

The industry remains divided over the benefits that product placement will deliver broadcasters and marketers, according to results from Marketingweek.co.uk’s latest poll.

Just 52% of respondents answered “yes” when asked if product placement regulations in UK TV shows should be altered, compared with 48%, who gave the thumbs-down to product placement.

The poll concluded shortly after Ben Bradshaw, secretary of state for culture media and sport, said that it would be launching a three-month consultation period into the product placement issue “shortly”.

It is thought that the lifting of the ban on product placement could benefit broadcasters by up to £100m a year. But some analysts argue that advertisers may redirect spend from other areas such as traditional spot advertising.

One argument for legalising product placement has been that it will make television shows more realistic. But according to Redshift Research’s latest findings, which were released this week, 66% of respondents say they do not believe this will be the case.

And 73% of respondents also say they are immune to the celebrity halo effect and that they have never been influenced to buy a product after seeing a celebrity using a particular brand.

ITV is the biggest supporter of a lifting of the ban, while Channel 4 has previously voiced its opposition.

Should the regulations regarding product placement in TV shows in the UK be altered?

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