Concave Brand Tracking combed through the top 100 movies at the 2019 US box office, recording every single product placement brand that appeared or was mentioned. As such, we identified over 3,500 brand/movie associations.
Using an in house valuation model that factors in screen time, brand visibility and audience, Concave assigns all product placement a monetary value. Using this model, we have determined the 10 most successful product placement in 2019 movie, based on how much advertising exposure they achieved.
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#10 Ford in AVENGERS: ENDGAME
The key to a successful placement product placement is a combination of being visible in a given entertainment property and a broad audience seeing the integration. Due to the latter, many brands in this top 10 will have featured in highly commercially successful movies. With AVENGERS: ENDGAME being the most successful movie in the world in terms of ticket sales worldwide, it should be no surprise that many brands it featured made this list.
Overall, AVENGERS: ENDGAME generated almost 76 million dollars in product placement advertising value for the brands it showcased, more than any other movie in 2019.
The first AVENGERS: ENDGAME brand on this list is Ford. It appeared in the form of a 1983 Ranger Truck on Hawkeye’s (played by Jeremy Renner) farm, Ant-Man’s (played by Paul Rudd) 1972 Econoline van and a Ford Crown Victoria taxi in the New York scene. This added up to one and a half minutes of screen time and was worth 5.9 million dollars in product placement advertising value.
Ford is the only brand to appear on this list twice, so look out for it again further down!
#9 Nike In SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME
With it featuring 50 different brands for nearly an hour of screen time and the movie grossing well over a billion dollars worldwide, SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME generated 56 million dollars in product placement advertising value. This was the fourth most of any 2019 movie and carried three brands into this top 10 list.
The first was Nike, which appeared mostly in the form of sneakers and a Dutch football jersey, both worn by the movie’s star: Tom Holland.
This and some other background appearance totaled three and a half minutes of screen time for Nike, SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME and was worth 5.5 million dollars in advertising value.
While this was Nike’s biggest movie of 2019, it was just one of 31 appearances. This prevalence made Nike the year’s 11th most visible brand in film.
#8 Audi in AVENGERS: ENDGAME
Audi continued its long-lasting partnership with the Marvel Cinematic Universe – and, more specifically with the character of Tony Stark – with another highly visible appearance in AVENGERS: ENDGAME.
The German car brand first appears in the form of a 2017 e-tron Sportback driven by Captain America (played by Chris Evans) and later as a 2018 e-tron GT with Robert Downey Jr. at the wheel. This added up to a minute and a half of screen time and had one of the highest quality of exposure scores of this top 10. By combining this high level of visibility and the record-breaking theatrical audience of the movie, this product placement was worth 5.9 million dollars in advertising value for Audi.
Audi appeared in a total of 20 of the top 100 movies at the US box office, but most of its exposure came from AVENGERS: ENDGAME, SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME and SPIES IN DISGUISE. All in all, Audi was the seventh most visible brand in 2019 films and the third most visible car brand.
#7 Initium in AVENGERS: ENDGAME
Eyewear was the third most common type of branded product in 2019 movies, after cars and clothing. Hence, we found two eyewear brand on this top 10 list.
The first is Initium, which was worn by Mark Ruffalo as The Hulk in AVENGERS: ENDGAME:
The brand got over three minutes of screen time. Despite its logo never being visible, Initium got nearly seven million dollars worth of exposure thanks to ENDGAME being the most successful movie of all time.
Although this was Initium’s only appearance in 2019 movie, it was enough for it also to be the 14th most visible brand overall.
Initium is a regular brand in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Tony Stark has worn their frames in IRON MAN 2 (2010), INRON MAN 3 (2013), AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON (2015) and SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING (2017).
#6 Shelby American in FORD V FERRARI
So far, this list has been about brands with moderately visible appearances in highly successful movies at the box office. But the alternative way to generate an enormous amount of value from product placement is by having a highly visible integration in a moderately successful movie at the box office. This is the case with Shelby American in FORD V FERRARI.
Despite Ferrari having its name in the movie’s title, the story is really about the collaboration between Ford Motor Company and Carroll Shelby’s Shelby American. As such, the eponymous brand receives nearly 30 minutes of screen time in the forms of cars, forms, signs, clothing and buildings.
Overall, this was worth 7.1 million dollars for the auto company – which remains operational to this day – and also made Shelby American the 13th most visible brand in 2019 movies overall.
#5 Sony in SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME
While SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME was a collaboration between Sony and Marvel, it retained a staple that has now been present in all seven Spidey movies: Sony product placement.
Sony appeared in SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME in the form of camcorders, cameras, headphones, tablets, TV and, most of all, mobile phones. Its handsets were used by most of the cast. This included Cobie Smulders, Jon Favreau, Marisa Tomei, Samuel L. Jackson, Tom Holland and Zendaya.
This omnipresent integration was worth just under 8 million dollars for Sony and helped Sony remain the 4thmost visible brand in 2019 movies, just as it was in 2018.
#4 Dita in SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME
While Dita did also appear in AVENGERS: ENDGAME, it got significantly more screen time in SPIDER-MAN FAR FROM HOME and, hence, more advertising value. 8.3 million dollars to be exact. Combined, these two appearances also made Dita the 8th most brand in 2019 movies.
The eyewear played a central role in the plot of SPIDER-MAN as they were the piece of technology left behind by Tony Stark for Peter Parker and their possession is one of the goals of the movie’s antagonist.
Much like Initium, Dita is no stranger to superhero movies, having previously appeared in AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR (2018) and X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST (2014) as well as other movies such as OCEAN’S 8 (2019) and THE HANGOVER (2009).
#3 Ford in FORD V FERRARI
While its somewhat visible appearance in AVENGERS: ENDGAME generated nearly five million dollars in product placement advertising value for Ford, it was its starring role in FORD V FERRARI that was the brands crowning achievement of 2019. Beyond appearing in the title, Ford had over 45 minutes of screen time and was mentioned throughout the movie. While less than a tenth of the number of people saw FORD V FERRARI compared to AVENGERS: ENDGAME, this overwhelming visible generated nearly 13 million dollars in advertising for Ford.
Beyond the boost to its brand awareness, Ford also benefitted from its portrayal as a vintage cornerstone of American society, a manufacturing powerhouse and a successful player in professional car racing.
2019 was a massive year for Ford in entertainment. Beyond having two of the top 10 brand appearances in a single film, it appeared in a further 73 of the top 100 movies at the US box office and 80% that featured at least one brand. This resulted in Ford being 2019’s #1 most visible brand in 2019 film. And while FORD V FERRARI was its biggest by far, the brand garnered so much more value than any other competitor in 2019 movies that even without it, Ford would still have been the number one!
#2 Nine Inch Nails in CAPTAIN MARVEL
In contrast with Ford – which was nearly omnipresent across all movies 2019 – at number two, we find a brand that only appeared in a single movie: Nine Inch Nails. The band’s t shirt was worn for over 10 minutes of screen time by the titular character of CAPTAIN MARVEL (played by Brie Larson). Between this extensive screen time, the high logo visibility and the movie grossing 1.13 billion dollars at the global box office, the Nine Inch Nails brand received 13 million dollars in advertising value.
While Nine Inch Nails has not appeared in any other major movies in recent years, it is far from the only band to feature in this way. A Black Sabbath t shirt was worn by Tony Stark (played by Robert Downey Jr.) both in this year’s AVENGERS: ENDGAME and 2012’s THE AVENGERS. The Rock wore a Mötley Crüe tank top in HOBBS & SHAW (2019) and in 2018’s BUMBLEBEE, Hailee Steinfeld wore Motörhead, The Damned and The Smiths shirts.
#1 Lego in THE LEGO MOVIE 2
And at number one, we find a movie whose entire existence was meant for one purpose: to promote its titular brand, Lego.
Although THE LEGO MOVIE 2 did generate more advertising visibility for Lego than any other brand in a single 2019 film, its weak box office performance means that it was less successful in its purpose than THE LEGO MOVIE (2014) and THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE (2017). Furthermore, Lego’s movie crowned it the most visible brand in film in 2017 and 2014 but we find it only #3 in 2019.
As the below chart shows, these two predecessors were worth 58.9 million and 72 million in exposure, respectively. Only THE LEGO NINJAGO MOVIE did less for Lego. Given the diminishing returns of the movies and that Warner Brothers has given up the right to the franchise, it will be interesting to see if this is the last time we see Lego among the top ranks of the entertainment marketing world.
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