Advertorials and product placement in Bucharest – somebody wants to kill me..

Where was I? Oh yes giving a presentation at the Marketing in Direct Conference in Bucharest.  Now this was new territory for me – a request to include a reference to Intercontinental (the hotel where we were staying) as part of my presentation. Not too difficult – IHG is a former client of mine and I'd just had a conversation with the Marketing Director not two days before. Then came the next request – some one was going to make a demonstration during my presentation and a security firm (also an event sponsor) would deal with it. Not a lot of details were forthcoming. I asked in a jocular fashion if any fake weapons would be used? No fake weapons was the reply. Oh great – just real ones then! Whatever happened I was just to carry on presenting and I would have a bodyguard for personal protection. Well rather than tell you what happened just have look at the film shot by Leif Anderson one of the other speakers. My heckler/would be assassin is an actor. The security boys are for real. That's what they call the Stanislavski method I believe.. well him anyway not me. You can see me peering out from behind my bodyguard standing to take a bullet on my behalf. I don't think I looked scared enough. My assassin wanted a photo with me and the bouncers afterwards – for his portfolio? There you go.

My colleagues also had product placements during their presentations – one involving a suitcaes the other a local wine company. Actually the most interesting thing about the whole experience was how self conscious we visitors were about it. This was a commercial event for business people which was designed to make money. Why on earth couldn't you use a little product placement? Well in the UK we don't do it. In Bucharest we did.

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