In Defence Of A Bloggers Right To Review A Product


Ever since my famous post Why I No Longer Link To The Likes Of ProBlogger And John Chow, I haven’t had all that much to do with the so called ‘A Listers’, but unfortunately I was brought face to face with one of them who, like Darth Vader, seems to have joined the dark side.

I was reading Lis Sowerbutt’s a review of Brian Clark’s Scribe SEO, and for those of you who know Lis you know she is a no nonsense blogger. She doesn’t hold back when she has an opinion and this review was no different. She was up front and told it just as she saw it.

Unfortunately Brian Clark, the author of the plugin, that you have to pay through the nose for, took umbrage at Lis’s review and rather than being diplomatic about it and discussing the issues that Lis, his customer, had with the plugin in the hope of getting them resolved, he went straight for the jugular. He ended his first comment to Lis by saying;

Also, I read your meta description of this post, and it says the opposite of your on-page conclusion regarding “scam.” I’d advise you change that, or our next conversation will be about libel.

This was in reference to her meta description, which can be read at the top of the browser, that stated ‘Scribe SEO – Review Of Scribe SEO – is it a scam?‘ Notice she didn’t say it was a scam, she was merely asking the question, and she was obviously targeting certain keywords. Anyway, I found this article listing the top 10 definitions of libel and as far as I could tell Lis’s post  doesn’t fit any of them, not by a long shot.

Brian’s left several comments in that post and the bulk of them says little for his character. But this post is not an attack at Brian at all. I wanted people to see how his reaction to a bad review has caused him more harm than good.

I’ve been involved in the retail industry for some 35 years and no matter what part I played in it, whether as a salesman or as a business owner, the one consistent thing I’ve learned is that the customer is always right. There has been many a time when I’ve known them to be 100% in the wrong but I’ve never made a point of it. I would try to point them in the right direction, but if they insisted I let them have their way. They are the customer and they’re the ones that butter my bread.

I was taught right at the beginning that if you gave a customer a good experience they may tell one or two others about it, but you give them a bad experience and they would make sure the whole world knew about it. Brian’s actions in the comment section of that post was about as bad as it could get. More than once he called Lis a liar when she did nothing but give her honest opinion.

Heaven forbid it had anything to do with the shortcomings of the plugin itself. Heck, he even went so far as to say;

SEO experts like Rae Hoffman, Michael Gray and Stephan Spencer have reviewed the Scribe technology, and they give a thumbs up. Much more credible sources than you given the topic.

as if throwing around the names of some bigwigs would lend credence to his argument. I reckon his biggest failing is that he doesn’t recognize hie own customer base. The plugin isn’t aimed at the SEO experts who know what they’re doing, it’s aimed at SEO newbies who have no idea how it works and perhaps if they failed to get the settings right it would give a false result.

I know of many occasions when, as a hi-fi TV/ Video salesman I got more than one call from an irate customer who accused my of selling them some dodgy equipment. Rather than going off the deep end I paid them a personal visit and found that the fault was because they didn’t install it properly. Rather than berate them I showed them where the problem lay and assured them it was a common mistake, even though it wasn’t, and left behind a satisfied customer. You know, most of them turned out to be repeat customers who always asked for me and being as how commissions was a big part of my salary, that was a good thing.

Another thing I’ve learned about business is that a very important factor is PR and I’m not talking about Page Rank, I’m talking about Public Relations, and while Brian may know a lot about Page Rank, his actions in that post shows he knows stuff all about Public Relations.

I would like to make one last point and that is one about public perception. I discussed this in my post Perception Is Important To Your Blogging Career! As a person who has previously had no knowledge of Brian, my judgment of his character can only be made from the way he carried himself while commenting on Lis’s post. My perception of his character may be entirely wrong but that’s all I have to go on because that’s the only side he’s shown me. I can tell you one thing and that is because of this, possibly flawed, perception of his character, I would never purchase anything from this bloke.

I would really like to see what your feelings are in regards to the way he handled himself. Am I looking at this all wrong? Am I merely taking the honorable knights actions by defending a damsel in distress?

On the other hand, if you agree with me perhaps you’d like to spread the word by tweeting the post or by using one of the other social websites below. Either way I would really like to know what your thoughts are? Read the rest of this entry

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Membership Drive For Where Bloggers Meet

I had hoped that my post introducing my new forum Where Bloggers Meet, would entice some of my readers to join, but unfortunately most people did not take up the offer. To those of you who did join I thank you, to those others I wish to point out some important points as to why you should join.

This Forum Is DoFollow

Yep, after checking both the signature links and links left within the posts I am satisfied that the forum is a DoFollow forum which, as you know, is very important if you’re interested in building the amount of links to your blog.

More Than Just A Forum

I  want it’s members to get something more than just important and useful information. I also want them to be able to use it to increase the value of their blogs, and the way to do this is to be able to use it to construct posts that are keyword rich that point to any particular post.

This is pretty well unheard of in forums but like I said I want to be different, and so if you’re into getting free backlinks then this forum is for you.

Just as an example I’d like you to look at Using Emails As A Source For Blog Topics, a post I did that linked to three of my posts as well as another of my blogs. As you can see the post provides relevant information and the links within the post are provided as examples that highlight points in the post. This builds the value of the forum as well as providing important backlinks to the author.

I will be monitoring all posts to ensure that people do not take advantage of my generosity by posting spammy articles that provide no value to the forum. I will not be accepting any affiliate links! If you want to link to a post that is promoting an affiliate, that is fine as long as that post provides value to the forum.

Providing value is essential as this will build the popularity of the forum as well as it’s importance in Google’s eyes.

What the forum need is a membership where it’s members help to build the forum so that all it’s member benefit. As I can’t build the membership all on my own I ask all members to help in a membership drive. Perhaps you know of someone who would like to join or, even better, you could write a post about it asking your readers if they would like to join a growing community.

One thing I would like you to keep in mind is that I only want members who are willing to contribute. I know how busy everybody is so all I’m asking is at least one post per fortnight. I will be deleting anyone that joins but does not contribute as it would not be fair to those who are.

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Perception Is Important To Your Blogging Career

I feel this to be a very accurate statement and it’s because of that I try to maintain an online presence where I am known for my honesty and integrity. Everything that you do online is being judged by others and may very well give them a false perception of who you really are. You want to make sure that perception of you is as accurate as possible because if it isn’t it could hurting your online career, whether it’s blogging or affiliate marketing.

The problem is magnified because of all the social sites the majority of us are members of. Let’s just take Twitter as an example. How many times have you chosen to follow someone and their very first tweet was one where they tried to sell you something? I know I get it quite a lot, and there are times when I’ve even stopped following them. They may have been a really down to earth person but that tweet led me to perceive that all they were interested in was trying to sell me something.

Let’s study the following picture for a minute.

These women all have one thing in common. Now I know when I first saw this photo I thought that every one of them was on the verge of having a mind blowing orgasm, and I was starting to get a little excited, when it turns out that the photo was taken just as they were about to sneeze.

The thing is that if I was to write something on this photo about what was turning all these women on, you can just imagine my embarrassment when someone pointed out what actually was going on.

The question is how to improve peoples perception of you.

  1. Don’t bullshit: This one is the most important rule that you should follow. You may get away with it for a little while but once you get caught out your credibility will be shot and it’s almost impossible to get it back, unless your Tiger Woods that is.
  2. Only promote things you believe in: Honestly, if you don’t believe in a product don’t go promoting it. By far the product I’ve had most success with is FlexSqueeze and that’s only because people can see how much I love it because of the emotion I display when I’m talking about it.
  3. Don’t say it’s so when you don’t know it truly is: Some people will read the hype on a particular affiliate and they then do a post telling everybody how fantastic it is, without even trying it! If that affiliate turns out to be shit then their perception of you and everything you say from now on turns to shit with it.
  4. Be COOL!: This applies to everything you do online, from interacting with those commenting on your blog to every other interaction you have with others online. If they’re abusive to you, show them your the better person by not retaliating. State your case in a diplomatic way and if they’re not willing to listen drop it! You win more points by letting it go than by losing your cool.
  5. Be Honest!: Different from #1 in that this is referring to those who have the tendency to steal content from others claiming it as their own. It’s only a matter of time before you get caught and when you do your name will be mud from now own. Better to do your own unique post linking to the one that supplied the idea for the post.
  6. Be Humble!: I have to admit I’m getting a little tired of those posts where bloggers claim to know everything about affiliate marketing and other stuff when it’s obvious they don’t . They may fool the newbies but everyone else can see them for what they really are, jerks!
  7. Accept Criticism!: Learn to listen to others when they criticize something about your post, your blog or about something you said. Don’t get on the defensive, it’s quite possible they know what they are talking about. Better to thank them for their opinion and to voice your reasons as to why you think they may be wrong without going on the attack.
  8. Your Input!:

I know that there are lot’s of other ways that we can give people a false perception of who we really are, but I want to leave that open so that you can voice your opinion.

 

 

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About Peter Pelliccia"