Having worked closely with brands, agencies and bloggers in the past 3 years, I can say that each day comes packed with as much fun as it has challenges to take up. With Bloggers (esp. tech/ mobile bloggers) now being on the center stage, along with the journalists – the power of web publishers can not be ignored. I like calling it community journalism!
Brands have started to understand it. Thanks to agencies and their compelling pitches for blogger related campaigns!
The idea is to throw up the product/ service to bloggers, allow them to soak their hands in it and come up with an *honest* review. Bloggers aren’t paid for this. There are exceptions though! (It reminds me of an excellent story on ‘Bribing Bloggers‘ at JoelonSoftware, published 5 years ago. )
That isn’t as simple as it looks to be in 4 lines of text! Why? Each one has his own agenda to propagate, and I guess fairly so. Brands needs reach, engagement, sales & support. Agencies need money, clientele, experience. Bloggers need
content exclusive content, first hand information, opportunity to interact with the product team, traffic on the blog, etc.
Did I miss something? – Credibility & Authority. Everyone needs it – Brands, Agencies and Individuals.
In the whole process of coming up with an interesting, engaging concept around bloggers and cool products/ services, we as human beings (read – Brands, Agencies and Individuals) tend to overkill or over-tune some dynamics. The dynamics of creating an ROI on the Internet. I guess we as human beings should identify the bars and encourage healthy reach/ engagement programs, much before brands and more importantly consumers begin to consider this exercise a fake practice.
This post is *inspired* by a discussion started on facebook by a known tech blogger in the Indian blogosphere. It’s against some Blogger Campaign and involves bloggers who participated & those who chose not to. Interesting conversations are what I will leave you with. While I wrote this post, I see it has attracted more than 34 comments and 21 Likes, within an hour.
Some screenshots (includes a comment from, yours truly);
You may view the entire discussion thread.
Disclaimer: I am the cofounder at Media Redefined, a social media and web technology agency and have been a blogger. For those asking me of our involvement with the brand or this campaign, I would like to clarify that we are NOT associated with it. Moreover, this case isn’t just about a particular brand, agency or individual – instead it’s a story on how we need to fine tune our initiatives to ensure a healthy communication and know our responsibilities as whosoever we are.
Feel free to share your thought as comments/ tweets! Cheers.
UPDATE: Within 24 hours, this post has got more than 500 views from twitter & facebook alone. Today I noticed, there is a huge rage amongst the Indian blogger community as well with the twitter #hashtag #IndiSammyScam. Here are some screenshots of the conversations;
There is another post by a blogger highlighting some details. I am not sure about the authenticity of the story but here it is.
Personally, I use an iPad2, but have used Galaxy TAB 10.1. I liked the product and I feel the bloggers could have been reached and communicated in a better way to avoid this crisis. From what was positioned to ensure reach, this is a classic example of how the bloggers can get offended in absence of proper communication & lack of clarity in expectations.