FIAT to Useful Idiots: "Please Also Respond With Your Pricing for Posting an Advertorial Like This."
Speak the truth, even if your voice shakes. Robert Farago didn’t invent the idea of telling the truth about this business, but he made it possible for me, and others like me, to bring that truth forward. At this very moment, there are several “respected journalists” flying business class to Europe where they will be fêted and pampered like kings in five-star hotels along the Spanish coast. There, they will pretend to be the customers for cars they will never be able to afford as they attempt to drown the still, small voices of their stunted consciences with free alcohol. Best of luck to them.
Back here in the United States, one East Coast autowriter received the following email and decided that the best, the most fitting, the most ethical thing possible would be to forward it to me, so that I, and all of our readers, can see “how the sausage is made.”
From: Amanda Ford
Subject: Blogger Opportunity from FIAT
FIAT wants create a social buzz about the FIAT 500! We would love to partner with you and your site.
We are looking for bloggers in (your town) to feature their FIAT experience leveraging your social networks and your website.
The Blogger Experience:
You and a guest will be picked up by a FIAT Product Specialist in a FIAT 500 for a test drive to a local restaurant. You and your guest will be treated to a FIAT-inspired meal and receive a FIAT gift pack. The Product Specialist will take this time to drive around the city while you two enjoy your complimentary meal. The Product Specialist will then drop you and your guest off at the location you were picked up.
This is an opportunity for you to have some fun with your experience by tweeting live, capturing video, pictures, etc. giving your thoughts on the FIAT 500 driving experience. This content should be published as an advertorial/blog post following the event…
• Your guest could use a Flipcam to record your driving experience
• Answers about the FIAT from the Product Specialist
• Photos of the FIAT
• Photos, review of the FIAT-inspired meal
• Features of FIAT 500: what you liked the most, how it drove, etc.
Please let me know if you are available to be one of the bloggers helping FIAT get the word out about the FIAT 500. Please also respond with your pricing for posting an advertorial like this. In addition, your dinner will be covered for you and a guest up to $100.
We look forward to working with you to create a great experience for you & your readers!
Social Media Intern
I like the fact that FIAT is holding this bribe at arm’s length: that can be useful when you decide to make the pimp fall on his or her sword cane by disavowing all knowledge of the program. Some aspects of the program, however, could use improvement. I don’t think being crammed in the back of a 500 is a good way to start any dinner, unless your dinner date is
a) Mary Lou Retton and
b) willing to ride in the back
Also, $100 won’t get you much dinner. Hell, V. McB and I were in the Village last year and her bar tab was $280. Expect me to bump the pricing on that advertorial, Amanda, unless you want to step in and take the infamous bad girl’s place, in which case maybe I’ll float you a Benji. Just kidding! Please don’t turn me in for solicitation. I’m not trying to call you a whore. I will leave that to The Yankee Blogger, who calls mommyblogger Crissy Kight
…a “whore”… somebody who’ll say anything for a free lunch, a windbreaker and a totebag.
You know the game, Mr. Yankee Blogger. Your mommyblogger chose me. Now we can handle this like some gentlemen, or we can get into some gangster shit. (Link warning: includes pimping.)
Thanks to our anonymous blogger, and I will make him the following offer: Come to Columbus, Ohio, enjoy a dinner to your specifications from my personal chef, and take an evening out in my Boxster S. You see? Sometimes it pays to be honest.
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That girl is cute.
Ahem: "If you click her “Ads & PR” link, you’ll note that she calls her site a “PR-Friendly blog” and openly solicits things like product demos or giveaways. You got cash? She’ll even let you sponsor her Facebook or twitter posts..." She changed her "Ads & PR" link, btw. Now it only says "If you would like to send samples of your product for possible review or feature on Dear Crissy..." I called her a "whore." Maybe that was a little harsh. What do they call themselves now, "escorts?"