Here’s a story that will teach you a little something about how not to behave. According to George Smith, who does online marketing for Crocs, a blogger at the BlogHer conference in Chicago tried to extort him out of some shoes. This is not a good idea.
Crocs guy says:
Anyway, it was about mid-afternoon when someone came up to me. I’ll call her generic mommyblogger because I couldn’t pick her out of a lineup if I tried.
“Are you the Crocs guy?” she asks, timidly.
I look up and smile. After all, it’s nice to be recognize and it’s a sign that I’m doing my job right.
“Yes, I am.”
We continue with small talk. She says her name but, while I probably caught it at the time, it slipped out of my memory as the events of the next couple moments transpired. She asked how I was doing at BlogHer. If I was having fun. How it felt to be one of the only men there – all those typical questions that were being asked of me. Then her demeanor changed completely. She mentioned how she didn’t get any shoes at the SocialLuxe lounge. I apologized, saying that we provided what we could but it’s hard because we didn’t know everyone’s shoe size. She nodded but I could tell that wasn’t the answer she wanted to hear. Then she says something that I couldn’t believe.
“Ya know, if you don’t give me shoes – I could totally write something bad about you on my blog.”
“Excuse me?” I asked – hoping she would laugh or give me some indication that she was just joking around. Nope…
“It’s just a pair of shoes. It’s a lot easier to give them to me than deal with the negative press I could make.”
Meanwhile, Valleywag says that there is no shortage of freebies at BlogHer, including, yes, Crocs, as well as makeovers and gift cards.
Do freebies influence bloggers? We can’t really say, other than to note that Consumers Union, our parent company, doesn’t allow them.
The Low, Low Price of a Blogger’s Soul: A Pair of Plastic Shoes [Valleywag] (Thanks, David!)