[This is a brief rant. Go elsewhere if you don't like rants. Thanks.]

I'm becoming more and more sickened by the increasing number of articles and blog posts I've seen in the last few months that are self-proclaimed "HOWTOs" on making your company, PR folks, or Marketing Department blogger friendly.

After all, there's nothing like a few excited bloggers to kick off a good viral marketing campaign, right?! Who cares if your product is lame. Just get some bloggers to talk about it!

No offense to Guy Kawasaki, but his How to Suck Up to a Blogger is the latest of these to cross my aggregator. At least he's using a more honest title. You're kidding yourself if you think this is not about sucking up from a corporate point of view. And, like many others, he's feeding into the frenzy.

At this rate, it shouldn't be long before the suggestions get more and more, uhm... "interesting." So I decided to follow this to its natural conclusion: sexual favors.

There. That was easy.

How long can it be before some new Web 2.0 startup (old maybe a desperate Old Media company) offers up the chance to "win a date with a supermodel" for anyone who blogs about their newest product. What after that?

Can't we just tell people to act like themselves and not the companies they represent? It seems like the better advice to me.

[Part of me already mumbles a subconscious "blow me" every time I get a non-sequitur PR pitch via e-mail [1], so the title of the post makes that bit of my brain happy in a strange way. I shudder to think how much of this Michael Arrington must deal with.]

Posted by jzawodn at February 21, 2006 12:00 PM

Reader Comments
# Brian Oberkirch said:

So where are the tips for getting pretty, interesting women to talk to you because you have a blog? Perhaps you will do a panel on this at Syndicate NYC?

on February 21, 2006 12:16 PM
# Adam S. said:

Er, isn't this sort of stuff Michael Arrington's stock in trade? It's like saying, "I shudder to think how many schlocky cubic zirconia vendors the fine merchants at QVC must have to deal with."

on February 21, 2006 12:30 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

I have a suspicion that there's *a lot* of stuff left on the TechCrunch cutting room floor...

on February 21, 2006 12:49 PM
# dan said:

Damn, I used to have a donate oral sex button on my website back in the day when blogging software was hand written. Though with your title, I may add it back in the hopes :-)

on February 21, 2006 01:04 PM
# Charles said:

I just don't understand why people think Kawasaki is such an authority. His big fame seems to come from his Apple Evangelism role, which occurred at the same time Apple's market share almost completely evaporated.
Guy is a lot like some of the sales guys I worked with that always talked a big game but failed to deliver the numbers. One thing I learned in sales is that the people who are delivering the numbers are too busy to sit around boasting about their numbers.
But hey, in the moderne blogosphere, you don't have to deliver ANY numbers, and talk is the cheapest commodity of all.

on February 21, 2006 01:20 PM
# hack said:

I look forward to Kawasaki's future post "How to hitch your car to the latest tech fad 15 minutes after it has left the station". Now there's a 'how to' he is qualified to write.

on February 21, 2006 01:22 PM
# ralph said:

I don't blame Kawasaki for Apple's market share plummetting while he was evangelizing. His role really wasn't to get new users, it was to whip up the existing ones.

No, what I blame Kawasaki for is the rabid horde of mindless Apple fans who descend on anyone who is ever mildly critical of Apple. He created a monster. (And I say this as someone who has been using Macs since they came with 128 kilobytes of RAM, and who never switched to Windows even during the darkest days.)

Now he's just hanging out with a monster someone else created.

on February 21, 2006 01:41 PM
# Charles said:

ralph, I don't think you can really blame Guy for the fanaticism, that goes way back to the days of the Apple 1. Maybe you're too young to remember the competitiveness between 6502/8080/Z80 users. And before that, they argued over TI vs. HP calculators. And before that, they argued over K&E vs. Dietzgen slide rules (how ridiculous, everyone knows that K+E slide rules are best)...

But really, the market share erosion is exactly what you can blame Guy for (well, in part, at least). If you can't keep your loyal customers from defecting, and you can't evangelize some new customers into buying, what good are you? Maybe we can get Guy to grace us with his insight by writing an article like "Top 10 Things To Do When Your Company Is Hemorrhaging."

on February 21, 2006 03:43 PM
# Sam said:

What gets me is some Web 2.0 start-up works REALLY hard for a a month or two months on some lukewarm app and then spends the next 9 months blogging how to great it is and how their methodology is better and how I should get real...

on February 21, 2006 03:57 PM
# Tim Converse said:

Jeremy --- Good luck with this bold approach! :) Let us know how it goes.

on February 21, 2006 03:59 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:


I believe you've taken my half-assed attempt at mocking PR/Marketing/Consulting machine as an attempt to get a little action.

From now on, any product endorsements that appear hear should not lead one to the conclusion that I "got a little action" before posting.

Then again, how will you know I didn't? (Well, except for actually knowing me in person and realizing that it's pretty unlikely...)

on February 21, 2006 04:11 PM
# AC said:

Heh, this post makes me think of that pro-blogging whore, Jeremy C. Wright.

on February 21, 2006 04:23 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

Does he accept "special" payments? ;-)

on February 21, 2006 04:37 PM
# soxiam said:

Let's be real honest here. "Sick and tired of same old..." IS what marketing always was and what it will always be. And I say that without hesitation as a marketing professional. Mainstream media, Blogs, Socialmarks... those are all just channels of message distribution. Channels have always changed with time, the message however has always been "sucking up" to the target audience.

on February 21, 2006 05:50 PM
# Tim Converse said:

Jeremy - I know you in person, and yet have no idea whether it's unlikely or not. :) But anyway, you're totally right - after your post, the burden of proof about _why_ you're endorsing any particular product is entirely on you... We can only assume....

on February 21, 2006 06:48 PM
# James Da said:

Anyone offering you oral sex hasn't done their research well enough. Everyone knows it'd only take a nice new light plane, maybe a neat little jet, to get a mention. :)

on February 21, 2006 08:03 PM
# Dossy Shiobara said:

Trackbacks = reach-around. Now the visual imagery is complete. :-)

on February 21, 2006 08:17 PM
# Jim Turner said:

So which supermodel is it exactly? I do have my standards.

on February 21, 2006 08:57 PM
# WebMetricsGuru said:

I read your post and then looked at Guy's. I'm on your side.

on February 21, 2006 09:03 PM
# Dustin Diaz said:

Thanks for these wonderful tips. I will try them out tomorrow! I've been looking for a reason to wear my speedos to work.

on February 21, 2006 10:05 PM
# grumpY! said:

yeah, you hate blogger sycophants in the same way madonna hates paparrazi. welcome to your most disingenuous post ever.

on February 21, 2006 10:23 PM
# Paul Montgomery said:

The mind boggles at what Nik Cubrilovic is having to deal with.

on February 22, 2006 12:35 AM
# Sam Meldrum said:

You don't think the linked article was tongue-in-cheek? It must have been. Surely!

on February 22, 2006 12:58 AM
# Razvan said:

Hmmmmm reading posts like this I bet that a lot of marketers wish more bloggers to be be females. That will give a new meaning to "combining business with pleasure"

on February 22, 2006 01:21 AM
# The Nobleizer said:

Finally a post I can agree with. Nice one Jay-Z.

But remember - the key problem is that bloggers aren't trained in how to handle perks, no matter how perky. They're out-of-control controllers of public opinion.

on February 22, 2006 04:28 AM
# said:

OK, got the hint... Sending one of the girls to your house ASAP (she swallows).

on February 22, 2006 04:45 AM
# Greg Tyree said:

I think this is simply an example or Marketing starting to catch up with technology. I still get cold call (and email) sales pitches for software and services and can only imagine the a-list bloggers getting the same through email.

The key remains to create the great product. Everything will likely take care of itself if you do this one thing. Well that and at least make sure not to irritate the bloggers, we all know how well what that can lead to.

on February 22, 2006 07:45 AM
# Elliott Back said:

Interestingly enough, I don't think giving sexual favors to bloggers will work without an automatic sex-back API. When you blog about company X's product, there should be an automatic ping sent that registers your "credit" with a central repository... ... then a cyborg is dispached to yoru cube...

on February 22, 2006 03:06 PM
# rozencrantz said:

I'm surprised no-one's mentioned the Brunching Shuttlecock's "Oral Sex Donation System"

Like paypal, but for something you can actually use.

on February 23, 2006 01:24 AM
# Aaron Pratt said:

Thanks for saying what others don't Jeremy. :)

on February 23, 2006 06:39 AM
# Amr said:

Tim C,

Why do you think he lost so much weight lately, too much action ;)

-- amr

on February 23, 2006 07:34 PM
# Rae said:

Nice. ;-)

on February 24, 2006 09:09 PM
# said:

A while back Sprint had a scheme where they sent out an email stating:

"The Sprint Ambassador Team recently visited donniejeter.com and wants to invite you to participate in our Ambassador Program. The Sprint Ambassador Program is all about exploring our latest products and services and allows you to give direct feedback to Sprint. We recently launched the Sprint Power Vision (SM) Network and want to provide you with the full experience, at no charge. Sprint Power Vision Network enables customers to download data at faster speeds and experience new data products."

I didn't know Sprint cared so much about my blog.

on February 25, 2006 06:03 PM
# Tom Foremski said:

Jeremy, I cannot condone your attempt at putting sordid ideas into PR people's minds. I have to say that such attempts to gain coverage on my blog are most probably unlikely to work--no matter how hard they might try.

on February 28, 2006 02:41 AM
# Shel Holtz said:

Personally, I'd rather there be many posts telling PR people how to approach bloggers correctly than no education, resulting in clueless and irrelevant pitches. In any case, I co-host a twice-weekly podcast on public relations and new media, and my co-host (www.nevillehobson.com) and I would enjoy having you as a guest on the show. Interested? The show is at www.forimmediaterelease.biz.

on February 28, 2006 08:34 AM
# Laender said:

So which supermodel is it exactly? I do have my standards.

Yes, not every model stimulate to blog about something... :)

on May 6, 2006 08:26 AM
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on January 8, 2008 10:58 AM
# rafael said:

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on January 8, 2008 12:10 PM
# Search said:

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on April 1, 2008 06:47 AM
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