Blogger Relations: Competitor Match Up!

When researching blogs for blogger relations campaigns, we often find that bloggers have reviewed a competitor’s product. In our experience, bloggers review each product based on its own merits. Within a product review, we have not seen a blogger refer back to a previous review of a competing product…but that does not mean that it has not been done. So, we decided we needed to gain some insight.

We reached out to a handful of mommy bloggers to ask how they felt about reviewing competing products. We also wanted to know if they would consider comparing competing products side-by-side in one review.

Following are scenarios we presented and feedback summaries:

1. You have reviewed “product A” favorably. You have received a competing “product B” for review. Do you compare the two products in your next review, or treat them as individual exclusive reviews?

Our handful of bloggers emphasized that reviews are always individual and exclusive. One mentioned that the only time they would not review “product B” is if the “product A” sponsor had them sign a contract stating they could not do a competing review within a given timeframe.

2. You have reviewed “product A” favorably. How often do you decline product reviews that may negate your favorable review of “product A”? Why?

Each blogger stated that they do not decline reviews based on any previous review. They are two separate products. They decline reviews based on product relevancy to their audience and their review load at that time. 

3. How often do you give the product provider a chance to opt-out of a review if you would post negatively about the product?

This response was split. Some bloggers said they would share their feedback on the product with the review sponsor prior to posting negatively – giving them a chance to opt-out. However, other bloggers said they do not give the product provider the chance to opt-out due to accountability with their readers. Several mentioned that readers expect honest opinions.

4. Have you ever been asked to conduct a direct comparison between two competitive products (think of something like the Pepsi/Coke Challenge)? If yes, did you conduct the review?  Why or why not?

Several of the bloggers had been offered the opportunity to complete a direct comparison review between two competitive products and enjoyed the experience.  All of the bloggers acknowledged that they would conduct the review of this nature if offered.

If you are thinking of conducting a side-by-side comparison review – your product vs. a competing product – we recommend you consult with a legal adviser prior to beginning the campaign. There are some considerations that should be addressed in order to play it safe in the legal sphere.

Have questions about conducting blogger relations campaigns? Feel free to leave a comment below or shoot us an email. We’re happy to help.