Product Placement??!?

So i’ve been thinking of ways to push my book, and i was wondering if there was any way to get product endorsement where i name drop and in return some company does free advertising. sounds shady but hear me out. i have morals, and obviously if they Camel cigarettes wants me to retroactively make the captain smoke a pack a day, well they can suck my unfiltered butt because i’m not advertising something i stand against, but let’s be honest…if you like the product what’s the harm in using it in a way that fits the story if it helps get views or is funny in the context?

i’m perfectly willing to discuss that as an option so everyone get’s free advertising when it’s appropriate. The problem is that i cant really just dial up taco bell and be like “I’m an author, um, you wanna flash my book on TV if i have the Captain do a harold and kumar spoof where they go to taco bell? Yes, i’m gonna lightly make fun of your food, but it’s all good fun and please advertise my book.”
(seriously, Taco bell, hit me up, i’ll do the spoof.)

where do you even start looking for that? does anyone here have any experience in product endorsement or branding or absolutely anything that may help the book?


Thousands of books every day mention real life products, but as far as I know no company has ever offered an author an endorsement contract, not even the big name authors. Writers just don’t have the influence with the buying public that sports figures have, darn it. ¯\_(ﭢ)_/¯

…does anyone here have any experience in product endorsement or branding or absolutely anything that may help the book?

Alas, not me. Just the usual things: use all your tags, enter contests, submit your work to the relevant official Wattpad profiles, create reading lists, and check out the Big Thread on How to Get Reads and How to Build Your Wattpad Audience.

There are always gimmicks you could try. Like several years ago a romance writer wrote a book where the plot revolved around a necklace. The book cover featured this necklace, and she ran a contest where a reader could win that actual necklace. Maybe you could do something similar? Like a contest where a reader could win one of the gadgets mentioned in your book or something? ヽ(^。^)丿

You could also try building a fanbase with a graphic novel version of your book. You do all the drawings on your covers, right? Many authors put out their work in multiple formats, like novel, play, screenplay, graphic novel, etc. You might attract fans that way who’d never read a novel but love comics. I dunno, but there are lots of little things that sometimes bring results. You just have to try them out and see if they work. Sure hope they do! ( ˆ◡ˆ)۶ ٩(˘◡˘ )

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it’s a cartoon sci-fi in an alternate reality future so i cant give away anything, cartoon starship or otherwise. kinda doesnt work. lol. the problem with a graphic novel is that only about half my drawings end up working, and some of the ones that work take years. the crew drawing took about 5 years, and the current cover is about a week in development. i’m an insanely slow artist. i’ll check the “how to get reads” thing. i was just really hoping like redbull would run my book cover in an ad if i had Greg pull a redbull line. i dunno. it was a thought. they’d have to be oddly specific to work in the story anyway.

sadly i’m not a comic artist. i tried a twitter thing for that and it took me like 8 hours of each day to make one drawing and after maybe 8 of them i was burned out and hated it. i’d love to have a real animator do a manga of it or something, but with no connections and no money it’s a dead end as far as i can see.

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Hm ads/endorsements is nothing new. I’d like to use dramas as examples. They used those a lot.
And imo even smoking product ads is not a problem. If someone is paying someone else for it and that said someone else don’t find it a big deal i think it’s all good.

Imo if there’s problem, it’s cigarettes/smoking itself.

And about how to approach advertisers, actually i already thought of this before and found it a nice idea.
What i’m doing is first, the story. I think it’s easier if it’s a story set in real life universe.

After that i’m not shooting for big advertisers or the sort but run an instagram, put my contact, and build some readers.
IG is like no 1 i think, in endorsements.
Small, medium, large, and mega businesses are always searching for more people to endorse their stuffs.
Honestly with a loyal and active fanbase of just 2k followers on ig would make a lot of businesses want to contact you.
Then you would want to make a beneficial contract for both parties.
Like depending on the price you would let the ads stay for x period of time (so you would edit and take the ads down after said period end).
You’d also want to specify whether the ads will stay if you publish your book physically (in case you don’t use a time period endorsement above). Unless you do want to let the ads stay even if you publish that book physically.
With those kind of variations, you can also set a different price for different type of endorsement.

If your story is something niche, hope isn’t lost. There are a lot of niche businesses on what your story’s revolve around too.
You just have to search for them.
More than that I think the problem is readers/fanbase.
I think this isn’t a way to get more readers, rather another way to monetize after you did get readers.
And we are writers anyway, readers always the most important if we want to make money from our writing.

Honestly I don’t think it’s a dead end. You can always improve your drawing.
But rather going back and forth between this and that and nothing work out and get frustrated out of it, imo it’s important to decide that “one thing” you want most atm.
And work on it.
If you want to pursue illustrations then practice drawing more, if you just simply want more readers then keep writing and research in what platform your ideal readers reside then promote on it more.

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I haven’t ever heard of this in a book, but a television or movie contract would go a long way in terms of product placement and endorsement. Would you think about selling the idea as a tv show or movie?

A contest would go a long way like @Akje said !

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If I can mention Happy Hot Dog Man in my book, you can mention Taco Bell in yours.

i cant find any contests. i dont know if i’m inept at searching, or if my books are disqualified for being mature rated, or if my computer is jacked up, or what, but the only contests ive found at all was basically Reeses cups asking horror writers to write a scary Halloween thing for “prizes” and frankly i dont write quickly enough to jump in, even if i wrote horror stuff, or cared about free gimmick prizes. i cant even eat chocolate.

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wasnt “permission” for a mention i wanted, i was hoping more for some brand of something i like or would endorse, maybe giving me free advertising in exchange for story space. Like if a character found a box of Twinkies and name dropped in exchange for Hostess mentioning my books. I dont want money for brand-whoring, but i do consume and enjoy some products that i could fit into the book appropriately enough to justify it for advertisement of the book itself. kinda of a “scratch-my-back-i-scratch-yours” trade, if that’s even a thing that exists. i wont sacrifice the story quality or endorse a brand i dont use/like or that doesnt make sense in the context, but i’m a comedy writer, so i can probably make a joke about a brand that is both funny and not immersion-breaking bad placement.

if i wanna bash star-bucks in my story i just call it spacebucks, or star-hole coffee and then make my joke. But i love taco bell and if they would do something in return, i would 100 percent do a “harold and kumar go to whitecastle” spoof with “Gizzy and Marley go to Taco bell”. that entire movie was a giant commercial for white castle and it was funny as hell. it can be done with class, i’m just sayin. they made 2 good movies promoting a burger joint i wont eat at because the food is nasty, but i enjoyed the movies.

there’s making funny content WITH a brand, and then there’s selling out, and i feel like if i had any clue as to how to contact these brands, we could make something work, even on a tiny scale. Walmart, McDonalds, and Chicl-fill-a can all eat a bag of spacedicks and i wont ever sell out for them, but i love redbull and tacos and why would i not do a mutual trade to spread the comedy to fans and get free redbull and tacos? that’s just smart decision-making.

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I’d say tread carefully, especially if you want to make money off of it one day. I’m not sure if many brands would like a shout-out in a sci-fi comedy book, but I know that many indie stores could use the publicity.

i literally give zero floating fornication if I make money off this, honestly. And i cant even find big companies to respond, let alone local anything to shout-out. Honestly if taco bell wants to promote the episode and wants all royalties for the episode rights, they can legally have one damn episode, the cant exactly tell readers to forget and un-laugh at the jokes. i’m not selling anything here.

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Hmm… now that you’ve mentioned it, contests on Wattpad have been lacking lately. I would refer you to the contests library list on my profile but I’m not sure they’re open and wouldn’t want to waste your time.

My best advice: keep looking! You might need to look deeper outside Wattpad for some better contests or wait until an official Wattpad contest comes up. I haven’t looked into it (at all), but I believe Netflix sometimes opens for movie/tv deals? If that interests you?

You could create your own contest if you scroll down a bit here. That’s always an option, and it might help you find more books like your own too. ¯\_(ﭢ)_/¯

Most user-run contests are referred to as awards on WP, so I’m not surprised you didn’t get far by punching in ‘contests’.

as much as a movie deal sounds amazing part of me morally wants to tell netflix to screw itself. anything for literally any other streaming movie thing?

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I haven’t heard of anything else… maybe have a look around? Does Amazon Prime do deals (even though I doubt they’re any less corrupt…)?

i’m looking into amazon actually, waiting for an associate of mine to be free to work with me, because he has amazon and i cant even get my phone to google. just waiting on work schedules to line up there and we’ll get tacos and brainstorm. amazon is as corrupt as any company but my book has a few jabs at netflix and now their “cuties” incident was the last straw before i told then where to shove my subscription. they dropped futurama, then dropped doctor who, then raised prices, then turned out to be run by pedophiles. so yea i’m gonna go with amazon.

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