Don’t send bloggers stuff for free unless it’s good

A lesson to corporate types: it’s good to catalyze conversations by sending out free stuff, but only if you’re pretty sure you’re already best of breed. For an example read Joel Spolsky’s report on a Sprint Phone he got to try out cause he’s a blogger.

Now, if Sprint listens to Joel and improves its next product? This will turn into a win. But, for now, I don’t see how this helps Sprint out in any way. Do you?

Free samples are good when it’s a new concept you’re trying to introduce to the marketplace. Sonos, for instance, has gotten great mileage by sending sample units out to bloggers and other influentials. That’s a totally new idea for an audio system and can’t be easily explained through a video — it’s something you need to experience to understand.

Now, if I had a sucky product (or was the #3 search engine like Microsoft) I’d keep bringing influentials in to LISTEN to them and improve the product so that they stop bitching.

Oh, wait, that’s what Microsoft was doing with its MSN Search Champs. They are getting better. Will they ever pass Google? Well “ever” is a long time and Microsoft has a lot of money they can spend on that problem.

Anyway, if all this corporate talk bores you, hey, the Ruby programming language site has a nice spiffy new design! I found out about that over on the Ruby on Rails blog. (Ruby on Rails is the framework that powers a lot of Web 2.0 sites).

55 thoughts on “Don’t send bloggers stuff for free unless it’s good

  1. I tend to think that for the most part people have been conditioned into thinking (quite rightly through experience) that if it says freebie then they will automatically receive goods which otherwise cannot be sold for whatever reason and are of an inferior quality. We are constantly bombarded through the media and other outlets that if an offer is to ‘good to be true then it probably is’ – trouble is that sometimes great offers do come along and are immediately dismissed just for this reason!

  2. I tend to think that for the most part people have been conditioned into thinking (quite rightly through experience) that if it says freebie then they will automatically receive goods which otherwise cannot be sold for whatever reason and are of an inferior quality. We are constantly bombarded through the media and other outlets that if an offer is to ‘good to be true then it probably is’ – trouble is that sometimes great offers do come along and are immediately dismissed just for this reason!

  3. If you have got a great product or service it’s always a good idea to let people “test drive” it. If you got a lousy product or service it’s always a bad idea to let people “test drive” it. If you have got an OK product or service it’s always a good idea to get out of business and do something else.

    André Hedetoft
    Geek Movie Director
    Just created a game where you get to play with my real life over at http://www.andrehedetoft.com in the quest of turning me into the obvious geek movie director!

  4. If you have got a great product or service it’s always a good idea to let people “test drive” it. If you got a lousy product or service it’s always a bad idea to let people “test drive” it. If you have got an OK product or service it’s always a good idea to get out of business and do something else.

    André Hedetoft
    Geek Movie Director
    Just created a game where you get to play with my real life over at http://www.andrehedetoft.com in the quest of turning me into the obvious geek movie director!

  5. the main point of the post aside, sonos seems like an ok concept to me until you lose your remote somewhere in your house…. then what?

    and the price?…1 rmeote + 2 zone players at abt $1k?….ummm yeah its a prepackaged solution..but its pretty pricey….

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