In 1985 the movie ET was still all the rave; a little candy became wildly more popular. Enter the Reeses Pieces candy! Back in the day, before product placement was a necessity a movie producer asked the makers of M&M’s if they could use their candy in a little movie about an alien; extra-terrestrial. Rumors have it that the M&M folks said “no,” so the producers went with something similar but a little different. Well, we all know the movie and the famous scenes; forever remember those little candies. But what struck me as odd was this ad I found in a Marvel Comic from 1985.
The add features the candy, and an alien. But that isn’t the alien… what gives? Could the producers have said ‘no’, to the candy company that had once said ‘yes?’ Or maybe the price to use the ‘real’ alien was just a little too high?
This is an example of not being able to afford the right pitchman. The candy company ends up with Billy Hayes, instead of Billy Mays, close but not close enough. If you have the money buy the right pitchman’s services, or you end up with something that doesn’t quite complete the circle. The message is, don’t be cheap on the promotion of your idea or product! While the Reeses company is large enough to survive this situation, you may not be.