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August 07, 2009

USA's 'Psych' and Kia cars smoothly drive their cross-promotion

Posted on Fri Aug 7 2009

A couple of cops are chasing down a purse snatcher, so you know right away this is TV and not real life, certainly not in any major city in the country. One cop tackles the bad guy while the other fixates on a Kia sedan parked at the curb. "It has Bluetooth!" he shouts. Doesn't take much to distract that guy. The spot, a promo for the new season of USA Network's Psych, premiering tonight, does an affable job of mashing up characters from a hit show with a major sponsor. Detectives Julie O'Hara (Maggie Lawson) and Carlton Lassiter (Tim Omundson) star in the ad, alongside the Kia Forte. (The car has Sirius satellite radio, MP3 connections and other gadgets, which we'll probably hear about in future promos or see in product placement on the show). The Kia-Psych partnership is in year two, coming on the heels of a successful campaign earlier this year with show stars James Roday and Dule Hill. If blurring the line between entertainment and advertising could always be this good natured, maybe people wouldn't gripe about it so much.

—Posted by T.L. Stanley

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