From Traditional to Transmedia: Transformation of the Narrative Strategies in the Product/Brand Placement

From Traditional to Transmedia: Transformation of the Narrative Strategies in the Product/Brand Placement

Nursel Bolat (Ondokuz Mayıs Universty, Turkey)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-5357-1.ch021
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Brands places products in the narrative series as part of the narrative, in the series on traditional media intended to reach the consumer. While television commercials are progressing along with narrative narration, transmedia presents the synergistic and co-ordinated nature of storytelling with entertainment, in a concerted and interrelated manner in different media circles. With transmedia storytelling, the customer is voluntarily involved. After studying transmedia narrative and transmedia narration, narration of transmedia on sample series, narration of continuing story of products in different media without placing product in serials is examined.
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Today, many companies seek new ways because of they can not have results they expect about promote their products on traditional media and in the process of the market creation. And these companies face with serious problems in reaching the target audience for their products and services in this period where consumers are in a constant message density. They develop different ways of communication to stay in the mind of the consumers for a long time. They turn towards to transmedia storytelling as a new approach to storytelling that is one of the most effective ways to be permanent in the consumer mind and to get their active participation in it.

Media content producers and companies that market their products connect the consumers they are trying to reach through participatory new media, social networks, and are able to use and express themselves in different media areas. This consumer segment lives in the digital age, equipped with new possibilities different from previous generations. The consumer, who has become more influential than the passive consumer feature, now displays the consumer profile in story formation and development rather than being the story person. Long-lived communication between the product and the consumer takes place while the consumer mass, which is included in the storyline on many platforms, interacts with the story. With its cinema, books and alternative reality games, transmedia, which faces the consumer, has an important place in the field of marketing over time.

This kind of approach and its reflections can be seen in Turkish TV serials. The products, that have been placed in the narration of the serials, combines with the narrations of the serials and hereby presented in a transmediatic platform. In a remarkable example, the brand of Coca Cola places its product in the “serial of Karadayı” and the product narrative that is included in the series narration continues on the facebook page dynamically. Similarly, a transmediatic narrative strategy was applied for the brand of Samsung and its new wearable technology for mobile phones –Galaxy Wear- in the serial of Medcezir via participation of audiences. Another example is the serial of Cesur ve Güzel. In this serial, a transmediatic narration was applied for Samsung washing machines and mobile phones with immobile images. In this study, these three TV serials are examined in the way of transmediatic narrative strategies that have been practiced. And, this study seeks an answer to the question of “How TV Corporations and companies apply strategies about content management in the new media platforms?”

Key Terms in this Chapter

Convergency: Media companies want to control the flow of media on consumers while they are experiencing the impact of transferring media content from different platforms in order to increase viewer loyalty, gain marketing success, and expand the market. In this process, they are in a position to use these different communication channels, which they have reached to transport, to interact with other consumers. In this kind of situation, also consumers enter into the expectation about the freely flowing of their own thoughts and they are not insensitive to these commitments that new media give them. Convergence between corporations and public sometimes draws these two elements near each other, sometimes draws them to a conflict. In this process, convergence reflects the process of consumers’ participation, beside a cultural changing. Convergence is a more continuous process than a certain end point.

TV Serials: The subjects of the TV serials process people's hopes, miseries, life struggles and events that can happen to similar people at the same time. The television serials, in the form of a play in the context of certain rules, are produced by the principles of keeping the program alive with the mystery and curiosity that they have created around the feeling of curiosity. Therefore, at the end of each episode, the viewer is carried via arousing curiosity to the next episode. TV serials include messages and they are produced for acceptance and adoption. Television serials, however, must also be constructed in accordance with the social rules of the countries in which they are published, and the characters, events and relations contained therein must be in accordance with these rules. Because the audience accepts the subjects and the characters that they regard as close to themselves.

Product Placement: Product placement can be described as inclusion of a product or a brand in a flow of a TV programme inside of a narration. Advantages of product placement from the point of view of companies can be listed as follows: Demonstration of consuming of the product to consumer in daily life, strengthening the brand's image using by famous and popular actors/actress, increase the sales of products. It also ensures that the visibility of the brand is increased by re-displaying the program in which the product is installed in different countries, different channels, at different times. And the consumer who tends to escape from the ad is caught between the program he/she watches.

Storytelling: Storytelling emerges as a form of communication of the living collective world. The power of storytelling comes from the story which has been told, its repetition and transferred form by the different actors. Transferring or telling of words or an event get involves to life living the told and breathing with it. Storyteller reflects a life that he/she did not live, or gives someone an opportunity to live his/her story. Storytelling is maintained as a tradition by transferring from generations to generations, and it points to a horizon of meaning that is acted together because of common (collective) denominators.

Narrative: A narrative is built around a story and a narrator. It involves a structure consisted of a communication process between “a sender” and “a reciever”. Narrative describes a process taking shape around the request of reader/audience understand the world. The concept also describes a desire to tell something as a basic need of human nature. Narratives change in the context of a dialectical relationship in connection with the changings and developments in the world. And the fields of narrative change, too.

Transmedia: Concept of transmedia has used by Henry Jenkins, first. Transmedia is regarded as a skill of telling on-the-fly data on different platforms with digital technology support. However, in the process of understanding transmedia, it is seen as an insufficient description to consider the concept as media use within a multi-platform. In this context, it is important to pay attention to the media, as well as to understand what is described.

Transmedia Storytelling: The main idea of transmedia storytelling is to personalize the story by deepening and interacting with the narrated story by the audience. For brands in the market, transmedia storytelling takes an important place in order to awaken the interest of the consumer, entertain them, motivate their senses, and give them a different content experience. Because transmedia has much more than an ordinary storytelling. In addition to the inclusion of the consumer in the story to be narrated, storytelling is being diversified and carried to different channels; in this way different perspectives are formed in different target groups, a variety of stories are prepared to meet the consumer's expectations and these narratives also provide the basis for transmedia storytelling.

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