Yesterday, I had a difficult challenge with a Best Construction Blog Competition nominee that shall remain unnamed in line with my policy not to comment negatively about individuals and organizations. At first glance, the blog looked useful, but when I clicked on the individual entries to review them, I encountered a problem. Each of the entries expanded into a marketing message that could only be resolved by taking an action that would result in the purchase/use of the blogger’s services.
Ugh. In my opinion, this “blog” should never have been able to enter the competition. A ground-rule for content marketing and blogging should be that the reader should gain value from the experience without purchasing products or services or doing business with the blogger. We might argue that some mandatory information capture (email data gathering) could be legitimate, but even that should not be mandatory unless the blogger is providing some exceptional additional service that supplements the blog, which provides useful information in its own right.
It is too late now to remove the blog from the competition and I won’t draw attention to it through identifying or linking to the site. The blog’s organization has (thankfully) not promoted it so it hasn’t attracted many, if any, votes, and I doubt the independent judges will support it, so it will remain the invisible entry with what has become an invisible review.
Tomorrow, I’ll report on a blog that does just the opposite (and I’ll identify that blogger clearly).