Unethical advertising incentives?

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Unethical advertising incentives?

belmeloro
Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?
=====
You are receiving this email as an owner of a 360Precision Adjuste.

Hi Stefan Geens,

As a valued 360Precision Adjuste customer we'd like to give you the opportunity to extend the warranty on your Adjuste. Over the past 5 years our Adjuste customers have enjoyed trouble free panoramic photography. As a thank you we'd like to extend the peace of mind our products offer.

You can extend the warranty on your Absolute from 3 years up to 6 years in a few simple steps;

    1. Join us on Facebook        + 6 months
    2. Follow us on Twitter        + 6 months
    3. Customer testimonial        + 1 year
    4. Publish a product review on your website or blog        + 1 years

We'll be running a product review competition in the very near future. The best published 360Precision product review will stand to win a cash prize of up to £1000. So get started on your review now.

The sooner you publish your review the better chance you have of claiming the winning prize.  The winner will be voted on by 360Precision customers from the list of the top 10 referring product reviews. The more traffic your review generates to our website the better chance you have of winning.

Once you've published your review simply email the link to [hidden email]

=====
I happen to be happy with my 360Precision gear, but I don't use Facebook or Twitter to promote companies in return for favors, nor do I "sell" space on my blogs for promotional content.

At the margin, I can understand that an extended warranty has value, and that 360Precision is willing to "pay" customers with it for promotional visibility. But I feel a warranty is a core part of the product experience. They should stand by their product either for 3 years or 6 years to everyone, not depending on whether the customer is willing to pimp their use of the product.

Another issue: Will it be clear to readers of a testimonial or blog review that what they are reading was written in return for material gain, essentially a paid promotion? Will 360Precision preface their testimonials with a disclaimer? If not, I feel potential customers will be duped, while participants suffer a credibility deficit. Hence, it's unethical in my book.

The irony is that I like my 360Precision Adjuste. I just don't like this incentivation scheme.

360Precision, this customer testimonial was free:-)

Stefan Geens
http://www.ogleearth.com/

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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Matthew Rogers - 360Precision
If you don't like it don't then ignore it, simple. It doesn’t matter what you do these days there's always someone that complains. If we gave away gold bars some people would complain that they're too heavy, it's a lose, lose situation.

All we're trying to do is build a better and more friendly community around our products. We're not asking ANYONE to pimp our products. Being able to communicate with customers on Facebook or Twitter is a lot more efficient compared to email. If you simply explain this to people then quite often they just ignore the message. I thought a little incentive my be the push some customers needed to join in.

Incase you didn’t know we already increased the warranty on the Absolute from 12 months to 3 years to 5 years all with out any bribes or shouting from the rooftops. If this is the response we receive then I will have to think twice about increasing it in future.

If a customer genuinely doesn't like our products then I can assure you a extra few months of warranty will not incentivise them to write a false review.

This offer was a simple nudge to not only get people to join the community but in a way reinforce the bullet-proof nature of our products.

If you need support for any reason please use the online support system at http://support.360precision.com

It's also rather unethical publishing a PRIVATE email that was sent to you as a customer. I'll be sure to remove you from all future emails and offers.

Matt

On 31 Mar 2011, at 16:14, belmeloro wrote:

> Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?
> =====
> You are receiving this email as an owner of a 360Precision Adjuste.
>
> Hi Stefan Geens,
>
> As a valued 360Precision Adjuste customer we'd like to give you the opportunity to extend the warranty on your Adjuste. Over the past 5 years our Adjuste customers have enjoyed trouble free panoramic photography. As a thank you we'd like to extend the peace of mind our products offer.
>
> You can extend the warranty on your Absolute from 3 years up to 6 years in a few simple steps;
>
> 1. Join us on Facebook + 6 months
> 2. Follow us on Twitter + 6 months
> 3. Customer testimonial + 1 year
> 4. Publish a product review on your website or blog + 1 years
>
> We'll be running a product review competition in the very near future. The best published 360Precision product review will stand to win a cash prize of up to £1000. So get started on your review now.
>
> The sooner you publish your review the better chance you have of claiming the winning prize. The winner will be voted on by 360Precision customers from the list of the top 10 referring product reviews. The more traffic your review generates to our website the better chance you have of winning.
>
> Once you've published your review simply email the link to [hidden email]
>
> =====
> I happen to be happy with my 360Precision gear, but I don't use Facebook or Twitter to promote companies in return for favors, nor do I "sell" space on my blogs for promotional content.
>
> At the margin, I can understand that an extended warranty has value, and that 360Precision is willing to "pay" customers with it for promotional visibility. But I feel a warranty is a core part of the product experience. They should stand by their product either for 3 years or 6 years to everyone, not depending on whether the customer is willing to pimp their use of the product.
>
> Another issue: Will it be clear to readers of a testimonial or blog review that what they are reading was written in return for material gain, essentially a paid promotion? Will 360Precision preface their testimonials with a disclaimer? If not, I feel potential customers will be duped, while participants suffer a credibility deficit. Hence, it's unethical in my book.
>
> The irony is that I like my 360Precision Adjuste. I just don't like this incentivation scheme.
>
> 360Precision, this customer testimonial was free:-)
>
> Stefan Geens
> http://www.ogleearth.com/
>
>



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



------------------------------------

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RE: Unethical advertising incentives?

Andrew Stagg-2
In reply to this post by belmeloro
Ethical or not, they would have their twitter and facebook accounts closed if they were to find out.
Andrew

From: [hidden email] [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of belmeloro
Sent: 31 March 2011 16:15
To: [hidden email]
Subject: [PanoToolsNG] Unethical advertising incentives?



Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?
=====
You are receiving this email as an owner of a 360Precision Adjuste.

Hi Stefan Geens,

As a valued 360Precision Adjuste customer we'd like to give you the opportunity to extend the warranty on your Adjuste. Over the past 5 years our Adjuste customers have enjoyed trouble free panoramic photography. As a thank you we'd like to extend the peace of mind our products offer.

You can extend the warranty on your Absolute from 3 years up to 6 years in a few simple steps;

1. Join us on Facebook + 6 months
2. Follow us on Twitter + 6 months
3. Customer testimonial + 1 year
4. Publish a product review on your website or blog + 1 years

We'll be running a product review competition in the very near future. The best published 360Precision product review will stand to win a cash prize of up to £1000. So get started on your review now.

The sooner you publish your review the better chance you have of claiming the winning prize. The winner will be voted on by 360Precision customers from the list of the top 10 referring product reviews. The more traffic your review generates to our website the better chance you have of winning.

Once you've published your review simply email the link to [hidden email]<mailto:matthew%40360precision.com>

=====
I happen to be happy with my 360Precision gear, but I don't use Facebook or Twitter to promote companies in return for favors, nor do I "sell" space on my blogs for promotional content.

At the margin, I can understand that an extended warranty has value, and that 360Precision is willing to "pay" customers with it for promotional visibility. But I feel a warranty is a core part of the product experience. They should stand by their product either for 3 years or 6 years to everyone, not depending on whether the customer is willing to pimp their use of the product.

Another issue: Will it be clear to readers of a testimonial or blog review that what they are reading was written in return for material gain, essentially a paid promotion? Will 360Precision preface their testimonials with a disclaimer? If not, I feel potential customers will be duped, while participants suffer a credibility deficit. Hence, it's unethical in my book.

The irony is that I like my 360Precision Adjuste. I just don't like this incentivation scheme.

360Precision, this customer testimonial was free:-)

Stefan Geens
http://www.ogleearth.com/



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Christian Bloch-2
In reply to this post by belmeloro
Well, Matt is actually just spelling out what happens behind the scenes anyway.

Bloggers and reviewers often get freebies and perks, and it takes some guts to not have that affect your opinion. For example, anytime you see a "Here's a special coupon" in the closing line, you can bet the reviewer has signed up for an affiliate deal and gets a cut of every sale from that promo code. I made it a habit to decline these, and negotiate to have the affiliate amount put on the coupon itself. Flipside is, that my coupons have to be hidden away in a password-protected area, so they don't spoil the game for all the other bloggers and reviewers. That's also why I prefer to pay for my own software. Of course, I accept freebies when offered, but I would never ask for them and I don't promise anything in return. Also, that doesn't stop me from pointing out flaws.

After all, every product is flawed, and I think people really appreciate a review that also mentions the weak points. Otherwise it's just not believable. And more than often, this is regarded as Top-Tier bug report, all the sudden has a higher priority and gets fixed in the next version.

If this is a real contest, where people actually vote up the review that they find most helpful, then this may actually be a good thing.

Blochi


On Mar 31, 2011, at 8:14 AM, belmeloro wrote:

> Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?
> =====
> You are receiving this email as an owner of a 360Precision Adjuste.
>
> Hi Stefan Geens,
>
> As a valued 360Precision Adjuste customer we'd like to give you the opportunity to extend the warranty on your Adjuste. Over the past 5 years our Adjuste customers have enjoyed trouble free panoramic photography. As a thank you we'd like to extend the peace of mind our products offer.
>
> You can extend the warranty on your Absolute from 3 years up to 6 years in a few simple steps;
>
> 1. Join us on Facebook + 6 months
> 2. Follow us on Twitter + 6 months
> 3. Customer testimonial + 1 year
> 4. Publish a product review on your website or blog + 1 years
>
> We'll be running a product review competition in the very near future. The best published 360Precision product review will stand to win a cash prize of up to £1000. So get started on your review now.
>
> The sooner you publish your review the better chance you have of claiming the winning prize. The winner will be voted on by 360Precision customers from the list of the top 10 referring product reviews. The more traffic your review generates to our website the better chance you have of winning.
>
> Once you've published your review simply email the link to [hidden email]
>
> =====
> I happen to be happy with my 360Precision gear, but I don't use Facebook or Twitter to promote companies in return for favors, nor do I "sell" space on my blogs for promotional content.
>
> At the margin, I can understand that an extended warranty has value, and that 360Precision is willing to "pay" customers with it for promotional visibility. But I feel a warranty is a core part of the product experience. They should stand by their product either for 3 years or 6 years to everyone, not depending on whether the customer is willing to pimp their use of the product.
>
> Another issue: Will it be clear to readers of a testimonial or blog review that what they are reading was written in return for material gain, essentially a paid promotion? Will 360Precision preface their testimonials with a disclaimer? If not, I feel potential customers will be duped, while participants suffer a credibility deficit. Hence, it's unethical in my book.
>
> The irony is that I like my 360Precision Adjuste. I just don't like this incentivation scheme.
>
> 360Precision, this customer testimonial was free:-)
>
> Stefan Geens
> http://www.ogleearth.com/
>
>



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



------------------------------------

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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Robert Harshman
In reply to this post by belmeloro
--- In [hidden email], "belmeloro" <stefan.geens@...> wrote:
>
> Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?

What....? You've got to be kidding.

> I happen to be happy with my 360Precision gear, but I don't use Facebook or Twitter to promote companies in return for favors, nor do I "sell" space on my blogs for promotional content.

Facebook and Twitter are ALL about business, promotion content on Blogs - when it comes down to it, the majority of Blogs are about business and promotion.

>
> Another issue: Will it be clear to readers of a testimonial or blog review that what they are reading was written in return for material gain, essentially a paid promotion?

This is up to the author, not 360Precision.  

>Hence, it's unethical in my book.

I just don't see anything wrong with this, I for one think Matt is making pretty smart use of modern social media to promote his products. If you have a issue with it, just don't write anything or promote it. I think your view of this is somewhat naive in this age of social marketing.


Regards,

Robert

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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Matthew Rogers - 360Precision
In all honestly it never even crossed my mind that anyone could possibly have an issue with this. How is it any different than offering a paid extended warranty ? The only difference is it's FREE or takes a few minutes of your time.

I really am stunned that this has caused a customer to compose such an email to a public list. I should know better by now though.

Matt

On 31 Mar 2011, at 16:55, robert wrote:

> --- In [hidden email], "belmeloro" <stefan.geens@...> wrote:
> >
> > Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?
>
> What....? You've got to be kidding.
>
> > I happen to be happy with my 360Precision gear, but I don't use Facebook or Twitter to promote companies in return for favors, nor do I "sell" space on my blogs for promotional content.
>
> Facebook and Twitter are ALL about business, promotion content on Blogs - when it comes down to it, the majority of Blogs are about business and promotion.
>
> >
> > Another issue: Will it be clear to readers of a testimonial or blog review that what they are reading was written in return for material gain, essentially a paid promotion?
>
> This is up to the author, not 360Precision.
>
> >Hence, it's unethical in my book.
>
> I just don't see anything wrong with this, I for one think Matt is making pretty smart use of modern social media to promote his products. If you have a issue with it, just don't write anything or promote it. I think your view of this is somewhat naive in this age of social marketing.
>
> Regards,
>
> Robert
>
>



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Yazan Sboul
In reply to this post by Robert Harshman

It seems to me that the precision kit is probably the best. What I find astonishing is that it is a real pain to purchase. I've never bought anything from them because I'd had such bad reviews (all concerning service not the product). What I find so odd about this and the face book bulk-buy offer is that it clearly shows that they are feeling the pinch of competition, they know they have a good product but they don't seem to understand why its not selling as much as the rivals! As a result this company seems to be looking for special methods of promotion.
This would be awesome as a bonus to an existing high level of service. Its almost annoying when you see them putting all this effort into promotions and yet they are still neglecting to send the product to you on time or even give you a phone number to call when you want to make an order! I just think the effort is being channeled in the wrong direction.
I'm not sure that I'd call in unethical, but I have to admit I hate it when a company (camera manufacturers do it all the time) tries to sell me more warranty as if the camera "Knows" I've paid more and lasts longer as a direct result. If its insurance call it insurance and be done with it!
Here is what it says on the contact page:
This phone number is not a sales and support line and will only be answered to existing supplier/reseller numbers. If you have a sales or support query please use the links above.Telephone: +44 1869 34 7272
I mean - where ever have you seen such a thing, If I'm making an order from a website and there is no sales line I do understand that they are cutting cost. but I do need a head  office number or customer services no at some point. The idea that there is a number but it simple will not be answered is just on a completely new level. I wish more effort would be directed to customer support and reliable service. I actually just recommend the atom to a friend today (I didn't need any bribes I know its a great piece of kit) but I did add - if you want to be sure to get it soon and without any hassle get a nodal ninja.
To: [hidden email]
From: [hidden email]
Date: Thu, 31 Mar 2011 15:55:09 +0000
Subject: [PanoToolsNG] Re: Unethical advertising incentives?


















 



 


   
     
     
      --- In [hidden email], "belmeloro" <stefan.geens@...> wrote:

>

> Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?



What....? You've got to be kidding.



> I happen to be happy with my 360Precision gear, but I don't use Facebook or Twitter to promote companies in return for favors, nor do I "sell" space on my blogs for promotional content.



Facebook and Twitter are ALL about business, promotion content on Blogs - when it comes down to it, the majority of Blogs are about business and promotion.



>

> Another issue: Will it be clear to readers of a testimonial or blog review that what they are reading was written in return for material gain, essentially a paid promotion?



This is up to the author, not 360Precision.  



>Hence, it's unethical in my book.



I just don't see anything wrong with this, I for one think Matt is making pretty smart use of modern social media to promote his products. If you have a issue with it, just don't write anything or promote it. I think your view of this is somewhat naive in this age of social marketing.



Regards,



Robert





   
     

   
   






       

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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Yazan Sboul


I have to add that I can't say for sure how much the service has improved recently. And I feel bad that I'm just guessing it hasn't -especially since there have been a lot of changes to the site recently and I do intend to make a purchase at some point. So I hope the previous points didn't sound too negative, because my central point is that the product is well priced very good (IMHO). They don't need to push it on the market, they just need to keep up an excellent level of customer service. And I really don't see why they can't have a sales line :)


> To: [hidden email]
> From: [hidden email]
> Date: Thu, 31 Mar 2011 16:34:00 +0000
> Subject: RE: [PanoToolsNG] Re: Unethical advertising incentives?
>
>
> It seems to me that the precision kit is probably the best. What I find astonishing is that it is a real pain to purchase. I've never bought anything from them because I'd had such bad reviews (all concerning service not the product). What I find so odd about this and the face book bulk-buy offer is that it clearly shows that they are feeling the pinch of competition, they know they have a good product but they don't seem to understand why its not selling as much as the rivals! As a result this company seems to be looking for special methods of promotion.
> This would be awesome as a bonus to an existing high level of service. Its almost annoying when you see them putting all this effort into promotions and yet they are still neglecting to send the product to you on time or even give you a phone number to call when you want to make an order! I just think the effort is being channeled in the wrong direction.
> I'm not sure that I'd call in unethical, but I have to admit I hate it when a company (camera manufacturers do it all the time) tries to sell me more warranty as if the camera "Knows" I've paid more and lasts longer as a direct result. If its insurance call it insurance and be done with it!
> Here is what it says on the contact page:
> This phone number is not a sales and support line and will only be answered to existing supplier/reseller numbers. If you have a sales or support query please use the links above.Telephone: +44 1869 34 7272
> I mean - where ever have you seen such a thing, If I'm making an order from a website and there is no sales line I do understand that they are cutting cost. but I do need a head  office number or customer services no at some point. The idea that there is a number but it simple will not be answered is just on a completely new level. I wish more effort would be directed to customer support and reliable service. I actually just recommend the atom to a friend today (I didn't need any bribes I know its a great piece of kit) but I did add - if you want to be sure to get it soon and without any hassle get a nodal ninja.
> To: [hidden email]
> From: [hidden email]
> Date: Thu, 31 Mar 2011 15:55:09 +0000
> Subject: [PanoToolsNG] Re: Unethical advertising incentives?
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
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>  
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>  
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>    
>      
>      
>       --- In [hidden email], "belmeloro" <stefan.geens@...> wrote:
>
> >
>
> > Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?
>
>
>
> What....? You've got to be kidding.
>
>
>
> > I happen to be happy with my 360Precision gear, but I don't use Facebook or Twitter to promote companies in return for favors, nor do I "sell" space on my blogs for promotional content.
>
>
>
> Facebook and Twitter are ALL about business, promotion content on Blogs - when it comes down to it, the majority of Blogs are about business and promotion.
>
>
>
> >
>
> > Another issue: Will it be clear to readers of a testimonial or blog review that what they are reading was written in return for material gain, essentially a paid promotion?
>
>
>
> This is up to the author, not 360Precision.  
>
>
>
> >Hence, it's unethical in my book.
>
>
>
> I just don't see anything wrong with this, I for one think Matt is making pretty smart use of modern social media to promote his products. If you have a issue with it, just don't write anything or promote it. I think your view of this is somewhat naive in this age of social marketing.
>
>
>
> Regards,
>
>
>
> Robert
>
>
>
>
>
>    
>      
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>    
>    
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>        
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> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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> ------------------------------------
>
> --
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>
     

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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RE: Unethical advertising incentives?

Rick Drew
In reply to this post by belmeloro
Actually I think it's pretty creative.  If you do a blog review, etc. just
mention that you'll also be receiving a warranty extension. Many states also
require this by law = if you are given compensation for a review you must
disclose it.  Social networking is the future - and no, Facebook and Twitter
will NOT cancel your account. If that were the case, Coke, Pepsi, and many
many others would be gone. They use Facebook and Twiter as part of their
marketing campaings.

 

Rick Drew



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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

AYRTON - avi
On Thu, Mar 31, 2011 at 3:20 PM, Rick Drew <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Actually I think it's pretty creative.


Me too !!! cool idea



>  If you do a blog review, etc. just
> mention that you'll also be receiving a warranty extension. Many states
> also
> require this by law = if you are given compensation for a review you must
> disclose it.



for sure


> Social networking is the future


Sorry Rick ... it is the "Present" already !  :-)



> - and no, Facebook and Twitter
> will NOT cancel your account.


Of course not



> If that were the case, Coke, Pepsi, and many
> many others would be gone. They use Facebook and Twiter as part of their
> marketing campaings.
>

a LOT of companies PAY for getting tweets from celebrities, and this is
normal practice everywhere
Nothign wrong with that.
WIRED magazine, did a interview with a brazilian guy, Rafinha Bastos, that
is considered the "King of Twitter" wordlwide
He CHARGES US$ 4.000,00 for one tweet if a Company wants him to tweet about
something, and he has 1.900.000 followers

<http://www.wired.com/underwire/2011/03/rafinha-bastos/>


Also, one of the biggest celular telephone company in Brazil, called Claro
(clear) pays US$ 150.000,00 a MONTH to Ronaldo, the soccer player, just to
have their brand name on his twitter perfil. He has almost 1.500.000
followers.
You can check that here :

<http://twitter.com/ClaroRonaldo>

Best
AYRTON



>
+ 55 21 9982 6313 - RIO
+ 55 11 3717 5131 - SP
http://ayrton360.com
twitter.com/ayrton360


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

belmeloro
In reply to this post by Matthew Rogers - 360Precision
Hi Matt,

If I look at all the gear in my pano workflow -- pro Nikon DSLRs, Apple Computer, Manfrotto... these all fit into the category of premium manufacturers with top notch reputations, into which I would like to place 360Precision, because the gear really is that good.

But these other manufacturers don't do two things:

1. They don't provide financial incentives for endorsements from customers, for example by offering an extended warranty in return for viral marketing. I think it's because they feel it cheapens their brand, and I'd agree with them.

2. They never, ever, insult a customer when receiving well-mannered criticism in a public forum. When I've had issues in the past both with Apple and Nikon on their forums, it is either made right, ignored, or they give a negative answer politely stated. That is because the customer is always right.

Finally, I'm not sure in which sense your mass-marketing email sent out to all your customers can be considered as a private communication. Or did you type that out to me specifically? In which case I apologize.

Stefan


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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

AYRTON - avi
On Thu, Mar 31, 2011 at 4:16 PM, belmeloro <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi Matt,
>  If I look at all the gear in my pano workflow -- pro Nikon DSLRs, Apple
> Computer, Manfrotto... these all fit into the category of premium
> manufacturers with top notch reputations, into which I would like to place
> 360Precision, because the gear really is that good.
>  But these other manufacturers don't do two things:
>
> 1. They don't provide financial incentives for endorsements from customers,
> for example by offering an extended warranty in return for viral marketing.
> I think it's because they feel it cheapens their brand, and I'd agree with
> them.
>


hehehehehehe
Sorry Stefan, but I think you're living in the dark ages ....  :-)

NIKON , Canon, Sony, etc ... of course pays and gives cameras to a LOT of
photographers to promote their products !!!

The list is so long that I'm gonna say only a few:

Sebastião Salgado got his Canons for use and they even prepared a special
modification ONLY for him !

In the 80s I got 5 Nikon cameras and all lenses (three) of each one, to use
during a Jacques Cousteau Expedition
I could use it, destroy, damage, do whatever was necessary to get a shot,
and get replaced as long as I would make reviews of it for them

I have a friend of mine that today, he uses SONY DSLRs just because he get
paied to promote them. He gives a LOT of workshops on Lightroom 3.0
AND
Adobe gives him all the Premium Suites, for free, of course, if he makes
reviews of it and promote during his workshops

Apple always send me iMacs to use in my workshops and even demostrations to
public, just because they want me to promote the computers

In the 70s, Eric Meola and Pete Turner were given tonssss of Nikon cameras
to use it as a promotion for the brand

And also they got rolsss of films Kodachrome from KODAK, just for saying
that they love to shoot with it


This is SO normal ...

What Matt is doing is just moving ahead in time and taking this to the
social medias ... Facebook and Twitter
Where else it could be better ?
:-)

BTW: I do not use his products, I love my Nodal Ninjas, but I respect his
product and I think what he did is just a clever idea to promote his brand,
and after all it is completely Ethical and Legal


best regards
AYRTON




+ 55 21 9982 6313 - RIO
+ 55 11 3717 5131 - SP
http://ayrton360.com
twitter.com/ayrton360


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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Roger Howard
In reply to this post by belmeloro

On Mar 31, 2011, at 8:14 AM, belmeloro wrote:

> Is it just me, or did this email from 360Precision to owners of their products which I got today raise ethical issues?
>
I think I've got more of a problem with the way you approached this than anything 360Precision might do to promote their products. Did you bother to contact the company with your concerns to see what they might say first? Because that's generally considered ethical... to give the other side an opportunity to respond before going public.

I see absolutely nothing unusual about this promotion, and only upside for the customer, so where's the harm? Are you seriously making purchasing decisions based on how many people "Liked" 360P on Facebook? Does it say anywhere in the message that only positive reviews qualify?

As others point out, it's up to the review writer to note that they are receiving some incentive to write the review; that's the only ethical dilemma here, and it's not 360P's.

Do you really think reviews of consumer products in magazines aren't *largely* bought and paid for, in much more obvious quid pro quo arrangements? If all companies kept their external promotion benefits as benign as 360P's offer shown here, I think we'd be moving forward, not backward, ethically.

Someone else claimed that Facebook and Twitter would pull 360P's account based on this offer. That's absolute nonsense and demonstrates a total lack of familiarity with what happens every day on those sites. Like Me on Facebook to be entered to win! Follow Me on Twitter and get a free bumpersticker! Another baseless attack - it tarnishes 360P by implying that their behavior is so out of the norm that it would be in violation of those services TOU's, so it must be wrong.

Seriously - why is it people jump on 360P so much? Ok, we've all heard anecdotes about bad customer service from what I can only assume is a very small minority of customers (as is usually the case), but this customer isn't even one of those - Stefan, you mention right up front you're happy with the product. You bought the product with a certain warranty, and they aren't trying to take that away from you. They are offering an additional means of extending your warranty for essentially no cost to you. As for whether they should stand by their product for the same exact term for all clients, what world do you live in? What industry *doesn't* offer different warranty levels depending on how much you're willing to spend? In this case you're getting a very reasonable warranty out of the box, for no cost; and an offer to add up to 3 YEARS to that term for basically nothing.

What the hell is there to complain about?

Note - I'm not a 360P customer. I own one ancient, original head they built, but I bought it second hand. I get no kick backs. They build beautiful, premium products, and I can't fathom what possesses people to go after one of the few companies building products for this very small market.

> 1. They don't provide financial incentives for endorsements from customers, for example by offering an extended warranty in return for viral marketing. I think it's because they feel it cheapens their brand, and I'd agree with them.

First of all, many companies sponsor or pay well known celebrity users in exchange for publicity. Many companies also provide incentives - from tiny to major - for people participating in viral campaigns on Twitter, for instance. Or have you never seen a "Retweet this message to be entered to win a new camera from XYZ Cameras...#CameraContest2011"

> 2. They never, ever, insult a customer when receiving well-mannered criticism in a public forum. When I've had issues in the past both with Apple and Nikon on their forums, it is either made right, ignored, or they give a negative answer politely stated. That is because the customer is always right.

I'm actually surprised Matt didn't insult you (Matt isn't known for biting his tongue), but I'm actually struggling to see where he did.

And it was not well-mannered. It wrongly accused a small business of unethical practices. There's no good manners in that. And no, the customer is not *always* right. That's just BS people say when they want to justify any actions. Can a customer take a crap on a table at an Apple Store and still be right?
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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Matthew Rogers - 360Precision
In reply to this post by belmeloro
Classic, although it's quite flattering to be grouped amongst Apple and Nikon.

If we could afford to advertise at the Superbowl I can assure you I wouldn't be on Facebook.

No, Apple just charge you £200 for AppleCare, if you want to pay for your extended warranty please feel free to send the money to [hidden email]

Plus were not asking anyone to do any viral marketing for us. Like i said previously, were just trying to build a more active/vibrant community around our products. If you don't want to be apart of it then thats your decision.

Matt



On 31 Mar 2011, at 20:16, "belmeloro" <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi Matt,
>
> If I look at all the gear in my pano workflow -- pro Nikon DSLRs, Apple Computer, Manfrotto... these all fit into the category of premium manufacturers with top notch reputations, into which I would like to place 360Precision, because the gear really is that good.
>
> But these other manufacturers don't do two things:
>
> 1. They don't provide financial incentives for endorsements from customers, for example by offering an extended warranty in return for viral marketing. I think it's because they feel it cheapens their brand, and I'd agree with them.
>
> 2. They never, ever, insult a customer when receiving well-mannered criticism in a public forum. When I've had issues in the past both with Apple and Nikon on their forums, it is either made right, ignored, or they give a negative answer politely stated. That is because the customer is always right.
>
> Finally, I'm not sure in which sense your mass-marketing email sent out to all your customers can be considered as a private communication. Or did you type that out to me specifically? In which case I apologize.
>
> Stefan
>
>


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

Christian Bloch-2
In reply to this post by Roger Howard
Great post, Roger, I agree 100%.

> Can a customer take a crap on a table at an Apple Store and still be right?

Can't say I never considered doing that. ;)



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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RE: Unethical advertising incentives?

Keith Martin-2
In reply to this post by belmeloro
Sometime around 31/3/11 (at 16:42 +0100) Andrew Stagg said:

>Ethical or not, they would have their twitter and facebook accounts
>closed if they were to find out.

No, this won't even cause the social media service owners a momentary
blip of concern. It doesn't bother me either, and I'll probably use
this as an example of savvy social media use in my lectures.

k
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RE: Unethical advertising incentives?

Mark D. Fink

> -----Original Message-----
> From: [hidden email] [mailto:[hidden email]] On
> Behalf Of Keith Martin
> Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 4:01 PM
> To: [hidden email]
> Subject: RE: [PanoToolsNG] Unethical advertising incentives?
>
> Sometime around 31/3/11 (at 16:42 +0100) Andrew Stagg said:
>
> >Ethical or not, they would have their twitter and facebook accounts
> >closed if they were to find out.
>
> No, this won't even cause the social media service owners a momentary
> blip of concern. It doesn't bother me either, and I'll probably use
> this as an example of savvy social media use in my lectures.
>
> k
Especially when your target audience creates a huge thread regarding it and
you get even more mileage out of it. :o)

Mark

www.northernlight.net
www.virtual-travels.com
www.pinnacle-vr.com

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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

pedro_silva58
isn't it high time one of the moderators intervened here?
cheers,
pedro

--- In [hidden email], "Mark D. Fink" <markdfink@...> wrote:

>
>
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: [hidden email] [mailto:[hidden email]] On
> > Behalf Of Keith Martin
> > Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 4:01 PM
> > To: [hidden email]
> > Subject: RE: [PanoToolsNG] Unethical advertising incentives?
> >
> > Sometime around 31/3/11 (at 16:42 +0100) Andrew Stagg said:
> >
> > >Ethical or not, they would have their twitter and facebook accounts
> > >closed if they were to find out.
> >
> > No, this won't even cause the social media service owners a momentary
> > blip of concern. It doesn't bother me either, and I'll probably use
> > this as an example of savvy social media use in my lectures.
> >
> > k
> Especially when your target audience creates a huge thread regarding it and
> you get even more mileage out of it. :o)
>
> Mark
>
> www.northernlight.net
> www.virtual-travels.com
> www.pinnacle-vr.com
>


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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

belmeloro
In reply to this post by AYRTON - avi
Hi Ayrton,

I think your post helped clear up for me why Matt's mail bugged me.

As you say, reputable companies often do give influential people products, and then hope for reviews of conspicuous use. But in my experience (and yours, as you explain it), these products are usually often not given _on condition_ of a review or such use.

If there is a contractual agreement to endorse a product in return for some form of compensation (a camera, or money) then yes, that should be mentioned by the company, to be ethical. (In the US, you will often see in small print "paid endorsement" on TV ads.)

If Matt had written me an email that went:

"Hi Stefan, we believe in our product so much that we're doubling your warranty from 3 to 6 years. In return, I hope you will consider joining us on Facebook, in part also so we can stay in touch. We also appreciate testimonials, which you can make <here>."

Now _that_ is an email I have no ethical problems with. I would even be motivated to go blog their gesture. Can you see the difference?


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Re: Unethical advertising incentives?

belmeloro
"reviews or conspicuous use" not "reviews of conspicuous use" of course... sorry.


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