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Product Placement hits Blogging

‘On Monday, a squad of around 15 independent bloggers will begin inserting mentions of Marqui’s hosted communications management services into their blogs for money.

The bloggers will get $800 a month to mention Marqui with a link once a week in their blogs and post its emblem on a page. They’ll get an additional $50 per qualified sales lead they send to Marqui.

“We hit on the idea of [connecting with] heavily read, influential bloggers who create public discussion groups and get feedback,” said Stephen King, Marqui CEO. “But there are no mechanisms for them to make money. So we came up with idea of paying them.”‘

Read more of this article at Marc’s Voice: Marqui product placement ads

Also talking about this story is Steve Rubel at Micro Persuasion, who writes ‘I am on the fence on whether this is smart strategy or not. On the one hand, the company gets to reach influentials in a very cost-effective way. On the other, I feel that it’s tainted.’

I tend to agree with Steve and feel like this is something of a risky experiment both for Marqui and the bloggers taking on the job. Does this approach run the risk of disenchanting readers?

This will be an interesting story to follow – if its done carefully and the bloggers chosen are writing on related topics to the product they place in their content then it could prove to be a worthwhile move – however if it becomes an unsubtle and obviously money grabbing exercise that dominates the blogs chosen then I’m not so sure.

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