Following up on the blog-bugging marketing syndrome rant started yesterday...
I say "syndrome," because it's obviously part of a growing trend. My darling Nikki's employer is a company called m80im, (pronounced em-eighty-im, or em-eighty-eye-em, or meighty-im as in medium, or...) which describes itself as a
"...unique Entertainment and Lifestyle Marketing company specializing in online grassroots marketing, online publicity and promotion, creative services, lifestyle and offline marketing, fanclub services, market research and consulting."
And all this before lunch. (Note to self: does "specializing" in seven or eight different fields somewhat negate the meaning of the word?) m80im must be doing something right though; its client list includes the likes of ESPN, Comedy Central, Urban Outfitters, Wal-Mart and a whole whack of record companies. So where's the swag offers from those guys? I could use some music and new clothes for my Kmart workout!
Then there's SponsoredReviews.com, in Beta stage at the moment, but it plans to "connect advertisers with bloggers willing to write honest reviews about their services and products." All through a meet-and-greet online marketplace, a pseudo $-Date service. It keeps going. There's PayPerPost, FlogYourBlog and even WhoreYourselfOutLikeAnAgingBankokTransexual.
And all this blogosphere matchmaking ain't limited to insipid promo offers, either. Also last week, in his MiddleZone Musings, Robert Hruzek mentions as a throwaway that he's "rounding second and heading for third" and is leapt upon by a group called MLB Bloggers looking "to bring Major League Baseball bloggers closer together."
Now, I'm no Marketing Snob. I'm a major proponent of the Word-Of-Mouth/Consumer-led type (as the glowing reviews of the Sernovitz and McConnell/Huba books at left will attest), and believe strongly in companies seeding bloggers. But the matchmaking in which Kmart, MLB Bloggers and I suspect so many others are now partaking in is akin to setting up a Colorado
As I have always said, particularly when I taught the subject at the college level a number of years ago:
All marketing is merely courtship
Marketing's ultimate goal is the bonding of two individual parties into a mutually-beneficial (and hopefully long-lasting) relationship. And to do that successfully, you need true communication and a real common ground.
In other words, if you want me to hop into bed with you, get to know me first. Listen to what I have to say. Show me you care. Respect me.
Then shower me with gifts, bay-bah!