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What NOT to Say to a Blogger at BlogWorld



My friend Keith Burtis and I were walking the exhibit floor at BlogWorld on the second day when Keith spotted a booth run by some folks from Buffalo. We stopped by the booth so Keith could say hello to his homies, when I recognized the brand logo adorning the booth. It was for a former advertiser on my blog network. The advertiser did fairly well – $200 – $300 per month, but I couldn’t stand the big, fat, orange sidebar widget. When I approached their customer service team about how the widget’s design stood out like an eyesore and wondered if we couldn’t work on a better option, the rep said, “absolutely not.” So I took down the widget and didn’t use that advertising program again.

When Keith and I approached the booth for this advertiser, I thought it would be a good time to give feedback on my poor customer service experience. Surely this vendor is at BlogWorld to pick up new clients and meet with the bloggers who already use his service?  So I told him my tale of woe. I explained how I’d really like to use his service but I don’t like the widget. The representative said to me, “Maybe if you were CNN we’d take your complaint into consideration, but you’re only a blogger.”

To quote Keith Burtis, “Dude, wrong answer.”

Let’s put aside the irony of this person coming to BlogWorld and brushing me off because I’m “only” a blogger, for a second….but…what the hell? Where did these people receive their customer service training, the DMV? I would have been satisfied with a “let me look into it,” but this guy let me know off the bat he didn’t care if I, a lowly blogger, used his advertising network or not.

I take issue.

I may be a mere blogger, but combined there are more bloggers in the world than people who work for CNN. Combined we can make more of a difference. Combined we can rule the world. One blogger might not be a big deal, but if we’re happy we’ll spread the word, and that can only mean good things for you.

I mean, why would you come to The BlogWorld and New Media Expo, so you can sign bloggers up for your program, if you’re going to insult the first one who tries to work with you?

I thought about outing this company but I’m not here to do damage to anyone’s reputation. However, if you’re going to be attending an event for bloggers, it’s best not to make them feel like second class citizens. No, I’m not CNN, but I have a voice and it can get real loud if I want it to.

Not CNN?

Dude. Wrong answer.


  • Lisa

    What a jerk. And you are so classy for not revealing their name, although “ugly orange banner” might be enough for people who have dealt with it. Who the heck wants an ugly widget on their site?

  • Larry

    I Take Issue…

    Don’t they know Bloggers “Talk”, to the world baby! Bad news and bad press travel faster than goose… Well, you know. I was at BlogWorldExpo09 and for the most part everyone I met was great. There are always exceptions.

  • peteherr

    Dude, you should have told us who it is….then they will notice that bloggers combined together are as large a block as CNN.

  • Jim

    It only takes a single 140 character tweet to start the ball rolling or a snowball going doing the hill to go viral. Ask Motrin.

  • Deb Ng

    It’s not my intention to out anyone or cause a bad PR campaign. I think it’s an important lesson in customer service, which is why I wrote about it. Everyone is important…even bloggers.

  • Scott

    I hear your voice ringing loud and clear. What a pompous remark. Buddy obviously doesn’t have a clue about listening to people. And so what if you aren’t CNN? The rep is only there to drum up $$$ and should be booted out of the blogosphere for saying someting so stupid.

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