tell your story, make your mark


October 29, 2012

How to be James Bond – is product placement just another way to say ‘personal branding’?

Remember when the eyes of the world were on Bond’s helicopter jump with the Queen at the opening of the London Olympic Games? Undoubtedly one of the best film marketing stunts ever, as 1 billion people around the world watched a man parachute to the ground with narry a brand name in sight. Yet everyone knew what and who he represented – not only James Bond, but also the upcoming 23rd Bond film Skyfall.

When it comes to the film however, product placement is rife. Speaking at the premiere, director Sam Mendes explained that product sponsors were especially important as the film’s studio MGM had financial difficulties and went bankrupt before filming even began.

“We couldn’t afford to make those movies if we didn’t have those sponsors – it’s a fact of life and it’s been happening for the past 50 years,” said James Bond star Daniel Craig.

Being Bond is something that the 007 brand makes accessible to fans of the lifestyle. Thanks to product placement you too can brand yourself as Bond and live twice, once as yourself, and once as your alter ego. Dress up as James Bond or a Bond Girl – it’s easy to know how to live the life, because the film franchise shows us how.

And in case you need some tips, we’ve put together this handy guide (prices are indicative only).


Drape yourself seductively around an exotic location

Head to the north coast of Jamaica, where Ian Fleming penned all the James Bond novels from his private hideaway GoldenEye in Oracabessa Bay. His house is now part of the boutique GoldenEye resort, and sleeps 10 of your finest friends. If you need more room, take one of the cottages on the beach or lagoon. Your private plane can drop you off at the Ian Fleming International Airport in Boscobel.   $6,600USD / £4,121GBP per night



Be the perfectly dressed English gent

Tom Ford is credited with dressing Bond in tailored, handmade suits that Jany Temime, costume designer for Skyfall says are exceptionally well made. “The fabric is amazing. The suits are indestructible – whatever happens, he stands up and the suits are perfect.” Yes, we know that Tom Ford is American, but perhaps the franchise wanted to freshen the Bond look?   bespoke suits POA – be prepared for the $7,000 / £4,000mark



Drive an Aston Martin (or at least look like you do)

If you can’t afford the classic Bond wheels, why not fake it? This silver Aston Martin DB9 keychain was won by Bond from villain Alex Dimitrioss in Casino Royale, and is considerably cheaper to flash around. Or at least, it was – originally by Anthony Holt jewellers, it’s not made anymore – but you might be able to pick one up preloved on eBay.   previously new $312 / £195



Get that smouldering, brooding look

Tom Ford Marko TF144 – that’s what you need to put into Google in order to find the best price on Bond’s eyewear. The graded lenses let you easily keep track of your navigational instruments of whatever exciting vehicle you are currently maneuvering, whilst looking cool under pressure. Be on on the cutting edge of fashion and style, and do your ego a favour.   prices vary online – around $235 / £147



Drink responsibly, in case you need to spring into action

Coca-Cola Zero, Bollinger, and Heineken are currently the official partners of the Bond franchise. But if you really want to impress, get the official 007 champagne with a limited edition silencer-shaped gift pack featuring the official Bond logo. Bollinger’s relationship with James Bond goes back to 1956, when the champagne made an appearance in Ian Fleming’s novel Diamonds are Forever. ‘Licence to chill’ indeed.   $200 / £125



Know you’re always on time (everyone else must be wrong)

“Suspense, escape and triumph – time is always of the essence with James Bond” say Omega, the official James Bond watch for ladies and men. Omega has been featured in 7 Bond films to date, and has released the Seamaster Co-Axial 300M to celebrate, featuring a ‘bullet’ decoration on the rotor, which is shaped like the James Bond gun barrel design.   $3,350 / £2,090



Talk the talk in a sexy voice

The Xperia T Smartphone from Sony says that the Bond phone has arrived. “Nothing less than the best will do for a secret agent on a mission. And Xperia T has the best of everything in HD.” If you want to be a secret agent on a mission, you need people to know that you are a secret agent on a mission. With this phone in hand, everyone will realise and be suitably impressed.   prices available after public release



Beautiful, glamorous women have impressively dangerous fingernails

Every Bond Girl knows that raking her nails down the back of a man will definitely not make him think of England. OPI is the official partner for fancy fingernails, featuring Bérénice Marlohe (who plays Severinge in Skyfall) in their promotional advertising. The nail varnish brand has released a collection named after the Bond films, and features real flecks of gold in The Man With the Golden Gun colour which also comes in a collectable gold container.   $190 / £119 for the full 2012 Bond Winter Collection



Wait – What if you’re a Bond Villain?

The get yourself these trainers! Ola Rapace (villain Patrice in Skyfall) wears these brown Puma Alexander McQueen Street Climb mid shoe sneakers which are visible in one of the promotional shots for the new Bond film. Made from brown leather, they feature white rubber upper/outer soles with a brown rubber sole and brown laces. Perfect for sneak attacks!   $250 / £150



And for the fan who has everything?

A china bulldog. That’s right, Bond fans – your life would certainly not be complete without this china bulldog called ‘Jack’ from Royal Doulton – it’s the Skyfall 007 edition after all, and it’s featured on M’s desk in the film.

Cute, huh?   $70 / £45




About the Author

Evon Koprowski
Brand storyteller, creative strategist, content marketer and all round bon vivant at Red Fortune Media where I growth hack projects for the arts, culture, tourism, technology and social sectors. I'm freelance - if I can help you, get in touch.

The psychology of colour in branding: which ones make you mad, bad, and dangerous to know?

Scientists have proven that colour influences our emotions. Brand marketers know this too. That’s why when designing the look and feel of your logo, livery or other design pieces, you must remember to consider your busine...
by Evon Koprowski

The ultimate guide to monitoring online reputation for your brand or personal brand

When it comes to monitoring a brand’s reputation online, there are many things we can all improve. Only 61% of businesses monitor their online reputation on a regular basis, meaning that many don’t think about it mu...
by Evon Koprowski

When personal branding goes viral: Philippe Dubost’s CV looks like an Amazon product

Available: one fit, good-looking six foot Parisian smiling bad boy with an entrepreneur mindset who speaks three languages and is willing to relocate for the right working relationship – so says Philippe Dubost’...
by Evon Koprowski


  • Get Livefyre
  • FAQ