**CONGRATS to nymfaux who won the signed copy of THE BODY FINDER!**
With the advent of DVRs, commercials seem to be falling by the wayside, so advertisers are finding more…shall we say "creative" ways to attract our attention. And maybe creative is a bit of an overstatement. Maybe in-your-face would be more accurate. It’s a little something we like to call Product Placement.
It’s actually nothing new. It’s really not DVRs that have spawned this event. Remember ET? That adorable little alien who stole our heart-lights back in the 80’s? Did he not make your mouth water for those delectable Reese’s Pieces? It just as easily could have been M&Ms you were craving if the Mars company made Spielberg the right offer.
Don’t get me wrong here, I don’t mind the shift toward product placement. Not even a little bit. It can even be entertaining, as long as it fits into the story. It can be as blatant and obvious as 30 Rock’s McFlurry episode (which, paid for or not, was sheer marketing genius!). And, which I might add, made my mouth water for the almighty McFlurry. Well played, advertising gurus…well played!
So, where does this product placement end, I wonder? Surely not with TV and movies. When will we see it bleeding into the pages of the books we love? And, more importantly, do we care?
In TWILIGHT, Bella drinks Coke. In Justin Cronin’s mega-hit THE PASSAGE, he mentions Nikes. I even did it when my main character in THE BODY FINDER goes for a run and listens to her iPod, and not her generic mp3 player.
But as an author would I be willing to change the soda that my characters drink based on a check I receive from PepsiCo? Or to change a setting to a certain fast food joint just for some extra change in my pockets? I don’t know…how much are we talkin’???
And what about the covers? Those beautifully crafted covers that we drool over? Should there be ad space for sale on those? Banner ads? Logos?
I don’t know…that may be too far even for me (and those of you who know me understand that “too far” is not a phrase I know well).
So, maybe “Sell-Out” is not my middle name. But I’m not ruling out “Apple” or “Charmin” or “Skittles”, you know, if the price is right….
But I want to hear your thoughts on brand names popping up in books. Does it bother you? Would it bother you if you knew the author was selling the right to have it named? Could you give a flip either way? And what other books can you think of that name actual brand names???
I’m giving away a signed copy of THE BODY FINDER, all you have to do is leave a comment by midnight on Wednesday, August 25th. One random winner will be selected!
What do you think: Kimberly Amazon Derting???