If you watch the latest clip by Spanish artist Giovanny Ayala, Tecate’s product placement is hard to miss. Open cans of beer sit on tables in the foreground of the stages, while striking outdoor advertisements adorn the backdrops of the cityscape. But none of that was there a few hours before the video was released.
The brand integration is the work of Mirriad, a company that uses AI computer vision to integrate products and background ads seamlessly into TV shows, movies and d ‘other video content. In this case, the tech company was able to negotiate a last-minute deal with the Heineken-owned beer brand and the Los Angeles recording studio behind the video.
Mirriad is one of the few companies to defend this type of post-production insertion as a new model of dynamic product placement. The ultimate vision is a system in which product placement is sold more like digital advertising. Content creators could add or change brands to target different audiences or refresh outdated locations where it makes sense.
Mirriad says production constraints resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic are helping to sell media companies on this new model.
“When [the pandemic] The first time around, we had a number of campaigns running that had to be postponed, ”said Maria Teresa Hernandez, Director of Brand Partnerships at Mirriad. “But as the year went on and the budgets were reallocated, we definitely started getting more people to hear from us, learn about us and want to know more, so we have started this year. “
The company’s proprietary method relies on two algorithms. One uses image recognition AI to scan entertainment content for suitable surfaces in the footage to place a product or advertisement in the world – a table or the side of a building, can -be. The other uses AI to assess the dominant emotion and story context for a given scene to better match the brand with sentiment.
“Let’s just say the customer is a grain brand,” says Stephan Beringer, CEO of Mirriad. “We could research the inventory or create the inventory on stages that are – and I’m just making up something – happy family, breakfast, morning, sun, home. And please, no alcohol. And basically the inventory is grouped that way. ”
In Tecate’s case, the beer brand wanted to reach an audience of Mexican-American men, a group considered difficult to reach through traditional advertising, according to Hernandez.
Virtual product placement isn’t the only production technology that has gained traction as media producers grapple with how to navigate quarantine limits. Advertisers have also started experimenting Deepfake AI as a way to remotely broadcast celebrity spokespersons in commercials without in-person filming, as well as a state-of-the-art special effects technique which involves LED screens and augmented reality.