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New Company Offers Product-Placement Disc

2 Jun, 2003 By: Holly J. Wagner

Is shopping a bonus feature?

Tim Marshall and Scott McKean, president and VP, respectively, of the new company Successful Technologies, hope so. And they hope to convince studios, advertisers and consumers of it.

Their new product, the “other d.i.s.c.,” is a product-placement disc they hope to package with various movies on DVD to promote products the actors wear and use.

“What we do is deliver enough information for somebody to go out anywhere and request the product,” Marshall said. “We also have a link that allows you to go to the manufacturer's Web site.”

Unlike competitor Delivery Agent, whose product Columbia TriStar will test on its disc of Charlie's Angels, the other d.i.s.c. plays on regular DVD players and uses the same standard navigation as the feature discs, as well as containing interactive links that work in a DVD-ROM drive or Internet-connected DVD player.

Successful Technologies doesn't have a deal yet, but is talking to studios, agents and manufacturers in the hope of getting a test.

“We have to kind of evangelize the studios and the agents and the manufacturers about the new product-placement paradigm of Madison Avenue coming in to Hollywood,” Marshall said. “We are just bringing together what is already out there. Product placement has always been out there, but, mainly because of the technology limitations, they have never been able to make good on everything product placement can do.”

Whether or not consumers will embrace shopping as a bonus feature remains to be seen.

“People do look at catalogs,” McKean said. “We're finding that consumers like the extras on the disc and that they literally consume everything on the disc.”

Successful Technologies is a subsidiary of Dominion Enterprises, which specializes in motion picture and animation development, and new technologies.

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