In the last few years, the music, marketing and advertising industry have teamed up for promotions from which all parties can benefit, namely, brand and product category mentions in songs. Hence, product placement has emerged to become popular. Consumer behaviour literature has been relatively silent on brand and product category mentions in songs despite the important implications from a theoretical, managerial and public policy perspective. This thesis therefore examines the phenomenon of brand and product category mentions in songs. Specifically, by using an original conceptual model, this paper investigates patterns and trends associated with this phenomenon and ultimately their cognitive, affective and behavioral effects on consumers. This thesis extends on the extant literature by empirically testing the conceptual model for product category mentions that has been ignored in the product placement literature.
This research is exploratory and uses a mixed methods approach that involves both qualitative and quantitative methods to understand a phenomenon because it produces more detailed, informative and useful results (Johnson, Onwuegbuzie & Turner, 2007). Furthermore, product placement in songs is a new area of academic research.
I conduct two studies: the first study analyses the content of the top 50 songs from Billboard 2014 year end’s chart so as to understand the product placement context. The Billboard 2014 year end’s chart is the summary chart of the best songs of the year (Billboard.com, 2015). The findings of this qualitative study supported the stimuli selection for Study 2. The stimuli selection was derived from this qualitative study of songs that relate to alcohol and vehicles and thus anticipate the next quantitative study. A 2 (mention type: brand or product category) x 2 (existence of repetition: none or one repetition) between-subjects factorial design examined the impact of repetition in brand and product category mentions in songs. 210 US consumers, recruited from an online research panel, were tested on recall, attitudes and purchase intent for brand and product categories after they were exposed to two songs. Each participant were exposed to either alcohol or vehicle related songs derived from the results in Study 1. Through multiple analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) and logistic regression tests, it was found that the hypothesised effect of recall, attitudes and purchase intent with the moderating role of the increase in repetition was not supported.
The findings from this research contribute to marketing literature by providing an updated content analysis of current patterns and trends within brand and product category mentions. Another contribution is the empirical investigation of the trends in the content analysis, namely, product category mentions and repetition. Additionally, this research contributes to literature by integrating fluency theory and applying it to explain the repetition effects of brand and product category mentions in songs towards consumer. Furthermore, the outcomes of this research also present important implications for public policy makers, practitioners in music, and the marketing and advertising industry. Specifically, this research suggests that music should be regulated.