Entertainment Media: Times of Branded Content

Entertainment Media: Times of Branded Content

Paula Cordeiro, António Mendes, José Mascarenhas, Sofia Lameira
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6190-5.ch025
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This chapter examines the hybridization of entertainment in media through the emergence of new advertising formats in radio, new forms of revenue and sponsoring for television shows, and the hybridization of press content, with monthly magazines portraying more promotional than editorial content. It is focused on media as entertainment industry to study marketing strategies developed by brands towards an approach to entertainment as part of branding strategies, focusing as well on innovative advertising formats. Thinking about these might affect the consumer perception of media and brands. This chapter relates media studies with technology and marketing studies rooted in the idea that lifestyle media may transform practices and routines with media as well as audiences' media relations.
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In contemporary society, leisure time is a sort entertainment time, since people amuse themselves in their free time with a range of entertainment offers produced by a set of creative industries that comprise the entertainment industry, representing a capitalist system of production in which the media are a very important player.

Media consumption is part of everyday life and an important part of leisure time, shaping cultural identities in a global context of media culture in which media are the primary disseminators of popular texts and thus, trends and consumption, using advertising and, currently, new advertising forms and formats that integrate editorial content, shaping media content hybridization, that we will further approach.

In this sense, the content being produced by media helps individuals to organize their leisure time, providing orientation and advice. We have long passed times of pure discussion of social uses and media functions: information and surveillance, setting the agenda and acting as a community forum that gave way to subjection to the economic and political system, holding the society together through entertainment propositions. Although media still portray a very important role in society, framing social problems and cultural issues, these are today dependent on corporate agendas. We observe media dismissing themselves from accomplishing public interest, becoming representatives for finding constant new efficient ways to communicate corporate information without, however, letting audiences be aware of it, framing a supposed world of joy and consumption.

Borrowing theoretical contributions rooted in critical work of Theodor Adorno (1947) to question entertainment as an extension of work and an escape from thinking about automated manufacturing processes, we focus on other academic literature to enrich our proposal, relating media studies with technology and marketing. For instance, Kung-Shankelman (2000); Kung (2004); Albarran (1996, 2010); Napoli (2003); Caves (2000, 2005) and Beck (2003); Hendy (2000); Rifkin (2000) and Mitchel et all (2009); Jenkins (2006), about media audiences and media industry; Deuze (2007, 2010), for the cultural and technological convergence of media and creative industries, as well as Gauntlet’s work (2000, 2004, 2007) relating everyday life, business and economics, enhancing, as well, creativity and community (Gauntlet, 2011). Communities are approached through research on online brand communities, following Cecília e Palazón (2008); Quinton e Harridge-March (2010); Ouwersloot e Odekerken-Schroder (2008); Wu e Sukoko (2010) as well as Schouten e McAlexander (1995); Muniz e O’Guinn (2001); McAlexander, Schouten e Koening (2002); Kates (2004), research on branding from a consumer perspective.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Consumption: Is the use, expense or application of a product. In this particular case, the act of buying products or “ideas”, based on advertising.

Lifestyle Journalism: Corresponds to forms of journalistic production linked to targeting media content to consumers, using different journalistic genres to create pieces of content reflecting the target lifestyle.

Co-Branding: It is a form of cooperation between two brands to create a unique product, to promote both brands or to create a singular extension of each brand.

Product Placement: The inclusion of brands or products in entertainment or fictional content, mainly movies or television shows.

Media Industry: Refers to content industry that produces several types of content, using diverse formats and distribution over different platforms.

Hybridization: The redesigning of media content, exploring product placement and innovative forms of introducing brands in media content to fund entertainment productions.

Brand Community: Represents consumers social affiliation in association with a brand.

Virtual Brand Community: Refers to a group of individuals establishing relations between them in a platform provided by a specific brand.

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