10 Favorite Product Placement Deals

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1 "Transformers"

The popular toy line hits the big screen next summer with its giant talking robots played by General Motors vehicles. Want a transforming Solstice instead of a Porsche? You got it.

2 Amazon.com's "Fish Bowl"

Bill Maher's talk show on the e-tailer, where he interviewed the creatives behind many of the company's products, may have seemed like a toned-down version of his HBO program, but the show worked. And viewers ended up buying more stuff.

3 Prius/"The New Adventures of Old Christine"

Toyota's plucky hybrid has become synonymous with Julia Louis-Dreyfus' environmentally conscious character on the CBS sitcom. It helps that the car's been central to many of the show's plots, including one where it has a run in with a gas-guzzling Hummer.

4 Dodge/"The Fantastic Four"

Vehicles driven by superheroes usually aren't branded. Next summer's "Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer" from Fox changes that, with the Chrysler Group's Dodge moniker emblazoned all over the Fantasticar.

5 Axe's "Gamekillers"

Unilever's Axe created a TV special around its deodorant and body-spray brand that's proved so popular with 18- to 35-year-old males it's now becoming a regular series on MTV.

6 American Express sneak peeks

The marketer super-serves its loyal card carriers and sows the seeds of envy among the rest with exclusive bits of content online from "Lost" and "Prison Break." Microsites drew a half-million visitors in a few weeks.

7 The King goes Hollywood

Crispin Porter & Bogusky develops an indie-feel feature film for its risk-taking client Burger King and starts shopping the concept to major studios. The creepy-funny King mascot is expected to have at least a cameo.

8 Bud.TV

Anheuser-Busch will launch a 24-hour internet-based TV network next year after the Super Bowl. It promises to be the first of many moves by marketers toward creating and financing their own content on their own terms. Loser: network TV, which will get a smaller part of the ad pie.

9 "Project Runway"

L'Oreal Paris, Macy's, Elle magazine, Tresemme, Saturn and others showed the brand-integration world how to strut their stuff. The marketers were stitched into every part of the successful Bravo franchise, both on- and off-air, making the deals mini-case studies in how to do it right.

10 Chevrolet Tahoe/"The Apprentice"

A folly and a favorite? Sure. While lots of consumers made videos that were less than complimentary of the big SUV, and were able to post them to the show's site, Chevy got waves of publicity for the experiment. Extra kudos to the carmaker for not freaking out about the ordeal.
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