Blogalicious Weekend has moved to Wordpress!

You should be automatically redirected in 5 seconds. If not, visit
and update your bookmarks.

Blogalicious 2010: The Thing About Product Reviews

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Thing About Product Reviews

We're all friends here, right? 'Cuz I need to take a minute or twenty to gripe about the double-edged sword that is blog giveaways. All of us get contacted on an almost daily basis, I'm sure, by well-intentioned PR companies that want to put their clients' products in our social-media-influencer hands. And, don't get me wrong, I do enjoy receiving advance notice of the latest gadget or happening event (did I just say "happening"? oh gawd), but what I don't enjoy is the poor, poor etiquette exhibited by some of these PR consultants.

Now let me be clear and say that not all PR companies that contact me lack e-manners; as is the case IRL, many are just as polite and professional as can be. It's the handful that rub me the wrong way that are spoiling it for the rest of the bunch.

First, my absolute pet peeve is those that don't even bother to find out your name. Even if we blog using an alias, use the alias people! Worse, or not, is when they call you the WRONG name or just DEAR BLOGGER. That drives me crazy. It's like receiving junk mail to your house addressed to: Residents of 123 Cherry Lane. Doesn't really make you want to read the letter, does it?

Second - and this is probably something that companies just plain haven't thought about - it's really annoying when you send me a sample of something to try out myself and also several to giveaway on my blog. Here's why: while I love the fact that you sent me a free knick-knack to play with, once I choose a giveaway winner on my blog, I have to ship your knick-knacks to my giveaway winners. And that costs moola. The other day I had to send a gift bag chock-full of makeup to Louisiana, which cost me $12! I did it because (1) I'm nice like that, and (2) I felt obligated since they did send me one too. But really, these things add up. And I end up coming out of my pocket at the end of the day. Not good PR.

Third, and finally - I don't like when some consultants demand a blog post in return for them emailing you their press release, or EVEN in return for sending you a free sample of something. If I like (or even don't like) your product or service, then I'll write about it. I will try to do it in a timely manner, but hey mister, I have 3 kids and work full-time - something you might have noticed had you even taken 15 seconds to visit my blog to find out my name.
Which, by the way ain't [Blank] or BLOGGER or JUSTICE. It's Justice Fergie. Miss Fergie if you're nasty.

An original DC Metro Moms post. You can read Justice Fergie's product reviews and other stuff on her blog, MamaLaw. Where she will probably soon be writing about how, for some inexplicable reason, she stopped getting pitches from PR firms...


  1. Great points Miss Fergie! You've pretty much addressed every peeve I have on this issues, especially when they spell my first name wrong. The whole shipping-the-prize-to-the-winner thing has only recently irked me when I dropped $35 in fees to ship two prizes one day - and I shipped the VERY HEAVY items slow boat...not priority mail. Ag-gaw!! I would have much rather used that $35 to fill up my gas tank, or get my really wretched feet a pedicure...thank you very much.

  2. Thanks for putting this up. I just paid $42 in postage 3 weeks ago. Now I am asking people to mail prizes themselves. I also hate people asking us to have to write the piece and then expect us to tweet or write an amazon review too. Me thinks they think we are getting paid for this.. Also giveaways are so much work I am limiting what I giveaway

  3. I have been contacted by PR folks for authors to do book reviews and have been picky abouot the ones I choose.

    Only recently have I done giveaways. It's a lot of work to spread the word and get entries, but I've met a lot of interesting people in the process. I'm only on my second giveaway now, but fortunately I'm working with great companies. If the product makes sense for me and my readers, I'm all for it.