Checking SKY in “Joy of Fatherhood”

Placedise is a software to automatically evaluate product placement. Therefore, we analyzed a lot of different product placement regarding their psychological advertising effectiveness over the last years. In our magazine/blog, we sometimes present some of those cases.
(Those are usually never projects of our clients due to terms of privacy.)


The Format: Joy of Fatherhood

Joy of Fatherhood” (orig.: “Vaterfreuden”) is a German blockbuster with actor and producer Matthias Schweighoefer from 2014.
The Comedy is all about Felix, who (after a sperm donation) was sterilized by a ferret. When searching for his last semen, he falls in love with the TV anchor Maren – and things go its way.

The movie is supported by many brands and filled with its products (e.g. McDonald’s, Mercedes-Benz, Apple, GLS, GoPro, RedBull or Sky).


The Brand: Sky

Sky Deutschland is a German Pay-TV channel and is part of the British Sky group. It is popular for its comprehensive sport program (in Germany especially for soccer).


The Product Placement

The brand is integrated many times all over the movie. Sky mostly acts as scenery when it is presented as the female main character’s employer.

In more detail, there is product placement within 46 takes in 12 scenes (not counting very small ones). Therefore, the brand is visible for 2:30 minutes – that is 2.4 % of the whole movie (without credits)! Every marketing controller would dance full of joy, reading those numbers. The question is, however, does this also lead to positive effects on the target audience of the brand?


Goal Assumptions

Placedise evaluates a product placement always with regards to the specific goals of the brand. Any other approach would be unprofessional, since there is no overall good or bad placement from a marketing point of view.

At the given case, we assumed that the reputation of the brand with the target audience (love sports, usually male, 18 to 49 years old) should be optimized in the long term. We also took the current reputation as well as Sky’s market share into account (as well as many other parameters).


The Evaluation

In our analysis, the product placement of Sky in “Joy of Fatherhood” led to a degree of goal achievement (PDGA) of 60.3 %.

There are no clear signs for negative reputational effects, but the PDGA could also be a lot better. The often to excessive integrations prevent a higher value.



Like with Kingsman and McDonald’s, I first want to point out that optimizing brand reputation works great with product placement (better than with most other marketing measures), but it is also way more complicated that just aiming for some attention and reach.

In this case, the very prominent integration is the reason for not making use of the positive effects and potential – said in a simple way. The brand could have done much better by placing its products in a more subtle way – e.g. skipping some integrations that have no clear plot connection. Presenting Sky as the main characters employer seems legit, but also printing its logo in-your-face on coffee cups is a little bit too much.

During our analysis, we also dug a little deeper. The product placement leads to a great plus when it comes to the explicit memory (recall) of the audience. There are even some positive priming effects. However, the attitude of consumers towards the brand (the change of it) almost showed negative effects – more or less neutral. The same applies for the consideration set of the target audience, which is basically their intention to buy – there were some very small positive effects, but basically no changes.

To put it in a nutshell: Sky was not harmed by the product placement, but it also did not use the great potential. Based on the assumption that they have paid a fair amount of money, the placement was definitely no great success. However, we are “only” looking at the psychological effects that the placement has on consumers. If you look at the total reach, the screen time or recall values, the placement could be evaluated as pretty awesome. It most probably also scored a very high media value. Therefore, this is a great example of how misleading those too simple KPIs are, when it comes to evaluating the success of product placement. In our opinion, success should be measured in how the placement supports sales figures (or at least reputation).


The detailed reports that come right out of the system:



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Jens Kuerschner

Author: Jens Kuerschner

Jens Kuerschner is founder and CEO of Placedise. As an expert in the field of consumer behavior and media enthusiast, he is especially responsible for the product know-how. In our blog, this knowledge and the experience of many years of research and study will be shared with you.

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