Erasable Pens and Hair Metal
A Business Week blog has unearthed what may be the first case of product placement in a music video. And it involves a writing utensil and an early eighties hair metal band. Naturally.
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If it’s not the absolute first music video product placement (video embedded below), it has to be a very early case of it. And at least the first for a hair metal band.
But it actually makes sense. Paper Mate was able to integrate their product into the video in a prominent way, yet doesn’t feel overtly crass or forced. And the band was able to get a free video produced by showcasing the product and using it themselves (and even illustrating the pen’s revolutionary erasable function). So, both parties benefitted from the partnership.
Plus, the video was apparently seen by a lot of heavy metal fans based on the jump in sales of this disc cassette tape after the video was released. So, although there’s no records of Paper Mate’s business following the video release, the product was seen by plenty of viewers in the hands of this rad band…which was the goal…and thus qualifies this partnership as a mutually beneficial success. (Not to mention, the band is called Autograph, and their album, “Sign in Please.”).
And hey, they even made it an integrated campaign via the promotional poster below.
So, it all makes perfect sense after all. Turns out Autograph was further ahead of the times than we ever knew back in 1984. And I hope they got a lot of complimentary pens out of this, and stored them away with their hair dryers and leather pants. Because I’m afraid that’s likely all that remains of their music career.
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