If we know online gambling companies like we think we do then TV adverts are something that they really are in the business of at the moment. Whether it be a cat being kicked into orbit, Ray Winstone scaring the living daylights out of you whilst urging you to place bets, or even some random bloke from Betfair being put where he belongs, on the floor, gaming companies seem to love a bit of advertising.
An interesting development then that the powers that be have decided that product placement on commercial TV channels is to be allowed, and as long as your industry has already advertised on TV then you’ll be allowed in, no questions asked. Obviously the BBC doesn’t allow advertising of any kind, but all other channels will be open to this.
What programmes should each gambling firm be looking to be placed in then? First up we’ve got Paddy Power, and after recent ad campaigns there’s a plethora of different places you might expect them to pop up. On the back of Rolf Harris’ wobble board while he presents a special nostalgic edition of Animal Hospital where the said cat is treated for its injuries. Another idea would involve a Namibian safari in the company of Bruce Grobbelaar and Carlton Palmer journeying around in a camper van where Bruce uses his fridge as a bed, and Carlton the bath.
You’d imagine bet365 would also have some canny ideas as to where they could place their products. Any placement wouldn’t be complete without the patron saint of cockney banter himself, Ray Winstone. So here’s the idea: Winstone joins Danny Dyer to present a new series of his deadliest men in pwopa norty places across the breadth of East London. It would fit in with the hardman image that bet365 are attempting by having Winstone in their ads, and those programs are always rather funny to see how many times Dyer screws up his face whilst talking.
Then you’ve got Betfair. The pioneers of the betting exchange, and in their corner there’s the irrepressible Scotsman Andy Gray. As he spends most of his time on Sky it may be difficult to get any product placement, but just imagine if you could get him to replace a certain word with Betfair every, say, 30 seconds. Seems like a reasonable amount of time to me. This would guarantee exposure to the sports demographic, and piss off Rupert Murdoch and Sky in equal measure.
One thing’s for sure, the advent of product placement will change TV forever, to the extent that next time you watch Corrie on an evening the bookies may well be run by William Hill, the pub by Wetherspoons, and cats flying through the air courtesy of Paddy Power. You never know do ya!