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October 31, 2005

More Perspectives On The Commercial Alert Letter

I think that Anastasia Goodstein has a point about the recent Commercial Alert letter to the FTC about buzz marketing practices of several companies including Tremor and P&G.

“Quote a Tremor spokesperson who says "there's nothing sneaky about Tremor's approach, even if the teens keep quiet about their marketing role." Personally, I think without full disclosure up front it is sneaky (and btw, goes against The Word of Mouth Marketing Association's (WOMMA) values of "Honesty of relationship, opinion, and identity). Neither Tremor or P&G are listed as WOMMA members. If buzz marketing firms like Tremor doesn't push for full disclosure by its connectors (even if they're saying bad things about the product), I think that WOMMA is going to constantly be fighting this type of PR battle... “

And Walter Carl makes compelling arguments for any buzz marketing company to encourage any participants in a word of mouth marketing program to reveal their participation in the program, even if no payment is received by the participant. As I write in the comment section, perception is everything, and my advice to any company that markets to under 18 year olds, you don’t want to put your company in a situation where your wider audience perceives you to be commercializing children.

Posted by johncass at October 31, 2005 10:53 PM

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