Marketers need to be careful while seeding content

Last Thursday (July 3rd) as reported on the trendsspotting.com blog, Coca Cola Brazil launched the i9 drink – Hidrotonico, the Brazilian version of Powerade. As a part of its i9 marketing strategy in blogs & social media, Coca Cola handpicked 9 prominent bloggers, custom made their homepage and gifted them a fancy USB mini fridge with the new product to be tested – a reason to blog about.
rent-a-blog

As can be expected, Coca Cola’s message and marketing strategy got spread around, until the story was picked up by BlueBus. Making a mockery of Coca Cola’s strategy to buy bloggers, it introduced a new term to refer to the picked blogs: “blogs-de-aluguel” or “rent-a-blog”.
Bloggers reacted to that with “I am not a rent-a-blog blogger” manifesto.

The Manifesto reads:

“A blog is a personal page, is a time logbook, is expression, is someone saying what they think/reckon/believe for those who want to read it. There aren’t bloggers’ union, wages, holidays, but we do lots of overtime. A blogger is not a journalist or an advertising agent: they can be everything and nothing, teenager or mother, hairdresser or CEO. Each one has the audience they deserve, the credibility they have conquered.”

legitimizing ads through blogs they state: “Advertisers are discovering how best to use this tool to reach niche …. Currently, the best alternative for brands come in blogs”

The discussion was all over blogs and tweets.
Coca Cola’s marketing program may or may not succeed – but it surely brought to some “street fights” on Portuguese blogs.
I believe this ethical issue will soon be discussed globally.

What do you think?

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~ by digivine on July 8, 2008.

2 Responses to “Marketers need to be careful while seeding content”

  1. as a marketer i belive you should never pay bloggers to promote your brand. The damages to the brand/company are far too high by a blogger admitting that he was paid to write as compared to the benefits derived out of the bloggers.

    Brand trust takes ages to build trust and seconds to destroy it.

  2. Wow I didn’t read or hear about this. I’m glad I came across your blog…I did a search on “seed content” for something that I’m researching. It really does become funny/ridiculous when you visit several blogs and they all just “happen” to be reviewing the same product….that they all just happened to purchase.

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