Products are slightly different when it comes to getting them into the shows or programming. TV Publicity (or Product Placement) is very different, and much cheaper, than buying ad space. However, you are limited unless you have a spokesperson ready to talk about it on-air. Having said that, you may not need one if you just want to see the product itself featured.
The first port of call when it comes to getting TV exposure for your product is to think of any upcoming dates that might coincide with a ‘gift guide’ segment. Most of the morning shows and breakfast shows will run a gift guide segment a week or so before the holiday – Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Christmas are the main ones to look out for. Often they will break it down for Christmas into Gifts for Mum/Her, Gifts for Dad/Him, Teenage gifts and Baby/Toddler gifts. If your product fits neatly into one of those categories then they should be happy to receive your pitch!
If you have some gorgeous homewares or lifestyle products, there are a couple of ways you can approach TV. One is to submit your product for consideration when they cover ‘new products’, or to offer the producer a product to sit on set (if it fits) or for the presenters to ‘play’ with. Once we were working with a children’s video brand where they could personalize it so Spiderman had your child’s face, and we sent it through to a show but used the presenter’s face instead of a child. We got almost a minute on air while they all watched and had a laugh at the presenter/Spiderman character. It worked a treat!
You can also look at some sitcoms/drama series that might fit your product and offer it to the art department to use in the show. We did this with a BBQ on Neighbours and it made it onto the credits! We also offered a pram to Home & Away when one of the characters was to give birth and they used it throughout. Don’t forget to put this on your website or newsletters; “As seen in Home & Away”.
Sometimes you need to think a little outside the square when it comes to products. If your product is visually distinctive enough then product placement can work. If not, then go for the gift guide segments or any of the product feature segments.
If you still can’t find an angle for your product, you can always offer a gift for each of the audience members. For most shows that would be 20-40 items but they will often ‘plug’ it on air as they tell the viewers what they are giving the audience members.
HYOPR has a TV Producer Contact List available. We’ve contacted the major networks for you and have curated the list down to the programs and producers that are open to pitches directly from small businesses.
If you think this all looks good on paper but want a bit of help before you completely DIY, have a look at our PR Coaching.