Marketing Case Study: LG and Jimmy Kimmel Live


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Using Late Night Shows To Influence Consumer Purchases

Late night sketch comedy has been responsible for advertising many things, from political messages to new movie releases over the years. In addition, late night TV is often successfully utilized as a platform by brands to become part of the conversation and storyline.

If you've ever been interested in understanding how an integration is built,  keep reading and we'll provide some insights along the way.  In this blog, Hollywood Branded will dive into crafting a successful partnership, how it happens, and why late-night talk shows are beneficial to brands.

Marketing Case Study - LG and Jimmy Kimmel Live, COVID-19, Product Placement, Branded Content, Brand Integration, Late Night TV, SNL, The Late Late Show

Why Late Night?

Partnering with a late-night TV show is a great way for you to connect with your consumers, or to a new group of consumers you want to target. Research shows that most late-night audience members land in the 18-49 age range and are evenly split between men and women. That is a wide range of consumers, many of whom are likely already customers of yours.

Late-night talk shows have been one of the more prestigious platforms for brands to be integrated in for the last two decades. From Jimmy Kimmel Live, The Tonight Show, to The Late Late Show, brands often become part of the storyline and focus.  Other late night programs that offer integrations include SNL - who in 2017 SNL announced that they were going to cut down on commercials by increasing product placement and branded content skits - which they have done quite artfully, and usually with a bit of tongue in cheek comedy.

Late night brand partnerships are a great opportunity to take advantage of the fandom which comes with TV personalities and dynamic duos like Kimmel and Guillermo. Their fan bases are dedicated and involved in what they like, so when they talk about your brand you are exposed to very engaged consumers, new potential purchasers of your product, and water cooler (and social) chatter leading to brand lift. 

How Brands Get On Late Night TV

In order to get on screen, you need a team with relationships - whether that be your media agency or your product placement agency.  Not all media agencies do integrations, and in the case of our agency, we are hired often by agencies to assist their clients within the world of on-screen brand partnerships, as that is our core specialty.   

Your agency will likely present you with a couple of options, shows or production companies or key people they’ve worked with before and have strong relationships with, and present options for consideration to narrow down which ones are best for your brand. When we were providing LG with potential options on how they could promote their newest device, Jimmy Kimmel Live was at the top of our list of suggestions.

After expressing interest in a partnership with Jimmy Kimmel Live, we reached out to Kimmel’s team to ensure that they had an open week around LG’s launch window. We confirmed the dates were open, then shared examples and viewership stats to officially lock in the date.

After that, we quickly got to work building out the integration skit. Then, we shared LG’s brand messaging points for the new product launch and identified important inclusions for the skit with the JKL team. From there, the production crafted a script we sent to LG and then approved. We spent a lot of time making sure the skit would include important shots of the phone and how it functioned, and highlighted key marketing messaging.

If your brand decides to do a late-night skit, there are a few other things involved. Once the script is approved, representatives from the brand or agency may watch the skit shoot live to ensure it is executed according to plan. However, COVID-19 limits additional members on set, so in the case of LG we watched the skit come together live remotely via Zoom, making sure that everything was correct and answering any questions that needed clarifications during the live shoot.

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Behind The Scenes Of A Brand Integration Skit  

On November 3rd, Jimmy Kimmel Live aired the LG Wing skit, featuring the world’s first 5G Swivel-Smart phone. The skit was integrated into the series as a short video highlighting LG’s new double-screen swivel phone, and showcased Guillermo, Kimmel’s good friend and sidekick, stranded on a desert island.

In the scene, Guillermo begins by videotaping himself and narrating that he is stranded but he is okay because he has his LG Wing. The skit has several shots which featured the dual screen usage of the phone, and its multi-tasking capabilities.

LG-WING x Jimmy Kimmel Live

Throughout the skit, Guillermo entertains himself using the phone; he posts a video of himself on social media, films a nearby parrot, then watches and follows a tutorial on how to make a coconut girlfriend. We then see Guillermo film his coconut girlfriend while saying “Wow, this looks like a real movie,” to emphasize the phone’s excellent camera and screen quality and most importantly, the gimbal feature.

The skit ends when a rescue helicopter finally comes for Guillermo and lowers a ladder for him to climb aboard. He declines saying “I met someone, and we have an LG Wing and real connection,” emphasizing the phone’s 5G feature.

There were more elements to this partnership than just the skit as well. For one week across episodes, Jimmy Kimmel Live featured a branded LG “bumper” leading out of the series into commercial time, in a seamless transition.

In addition, the show shared the skit on their YouTube channel, on ABC and Hulu, viewable and accessible to millions of subscribers. And LG was able to repurpose the content shown on the show by reposting the skit and inclusions in their consumer updates on all of their social media platforms.

Marketing Case Study - LG and Jimmy Kimmel Live, COVID-19, Product Placement, Branded Content, Brand Integration, Late Night TV, SNL, The Late Late Show, LG, The LG Wing, 5G

This was not the first time Jimmy Kimmel, and Guillermo, had done a branded content skit on their show. In fact for Kimmel, it is a mainstay of the show, and brands are spotted periodically throughout the season on a week-by-week basis.  And these are often quite popular; for example, Jimmy Kimmel Live did a skit where Guillermo worked a KFC drive-thru on National Fried Chicken Day. As a result, there was a significant increase in buzz about KFC online, which ultimately increased sales through Labor Day.

The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon also had a successful partnership with Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. In 2017, Wonder Woman’s star, Gal Gadot, had her first ever Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup on the show during an interview. The clip alone gained several million views on YouTube. After that, data showed that the perception of Reese’s from women was the highest it had ever been. This spot on The Tonight Show benefited Reese’s image as a brand.

The Benefits of Product Placement

Product placement has been an extremely successful and beneficial marketing strategy for brands outside of late-night TV. Some of the most famous brand integrations occurring in big box-office movies, and you may not have even realized it. To put the power of product placement in perspective, here are the top 10 product placements in movies according to ampersand

  1. Barbasol - Jurassic Park
  2. Wilson Volleyball - Cast Away 
  3. Reese's Pieces - E.T.
  4. Chevrolet Camaro - Transformers
  5. Nokia - The Matrix
  6. Pizza Hut, Pepsi, and Reebok - Wayne's World
  7. Aston Martin - James Bond 007
  8. White Castle - Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle 
  9. Daisy's Red Ryder BB Gun - A Christmas Story 
  10. Ray Ban Sunglasses - Top Gun

What do you think?  Are there any that come to mind that they missed? 

Both TV and streaming platforms offer massive amounts of product placement and brand integration. Sample partnerships our agency has built has included BlackBerry phones into House Of Cards, Bumble into Riverdale, and Ralph Lauren into Netflix's Elite.

To say the least, there are endless branded content and product placement opportunities available for your brand, you just have to know what kind of production you want to partner with - from film, to TV or streaming, or even  music videos.

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Get Started With Product Placement Today

In general, product placement is an extremely beneficial marketing choice for brands. It allows for full or partial integration of a brand’s product into the very content that their customers love. Product placement often results in increased sales, increased positivity in the reception of the brand, and wide, international exposure.

Our agency has plenty of late-night, primetime, and other production based relationships to help your brand. We have over a decade's worth of experience in the industry and are always looking for new clients and brand to assist with product placement and brand integration. If you'd like to learn more about these marketing strategies, check out some of our agency's blogs. 

Product Placement & Co-Promotions 101 Guide