Beads of Cambay - Response From .Com Marketing  

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I was just contacted by Sharon Swendner, President, .Com Marketing regarding the post I made about the company Beads of Cambay, back in October 2008. If you are not familiar with this debacle, read this:
Crafty Pagans - Beware of This Company! - then come back to this post!

Okay, so this Sharon person left me this message:

"Lisa, I'm posting here based on some things you said quite some time ago (October 2008), but since as you know things stay on the web for a long time, I only became aware of it yesterday. I wanted to let you know what really transpired and why. The posts I am speaking of are related to a client of ours, Beads of Cambay, and some posts you made about them. You were part of a paid blogger campaign that we ran on their behalf at that time. You were kind enough to accept our post opportunity and say some very nice things about them. However, it seems there were two things that happened after that and resulted in additional not so friendly posts. First you said that you were paid late for your post. I did check with the accounting group at our blog platform partner and my understanding is that the delay in payment was because you did not adhere to the requirements of the post (keywords, link, etc.). That was identified and you were notified to adjust the post. Once that was accomplished, the payment was released.

The second issue was around you being banned from posting for our client, Beads of Cambay. Part of what my company and team do for our clients when we use blog posts is follow their branding guidelines and insure we protect their reputation. As part of that service one of my team members made the decision (without input from Beads of Cambay) to remove you as a blogger with the concern that your beliefs may be offensive to some people. Our client, Beads of Cambay in no way was responsible for that ban and was not consulted in that decision. We apologize that this happened. We in no way intended to harm you and we understand that you are and remain a member in good standing of the blogging network. The decision to ban you was simply a subjective decision based on what that person knew and believed to be best for the client at that time. We were not making any judgement about you or your beliefs but simply a business decision that we believed would serve our client. Perhaps we were wrong in doing so and for that we apologize. Please however know that Beads of Cambay was not involved in this decision and did not condone or approve it. They welcome purchases from all people and do not discriminate in any way.

Thank you for the opportunity to share this information and we appreciate all your efforts on the behalf of our and other clients out there who know and understand the value of blogging. Should you wish to discuss more, please contact me via our website at www.commarketing.com."
Now, I'd like to respond, so I'll go point by point:

"First you said that you were paid late for your post. I did check with the accounting group at our blog platform partner and my understanding is that the delay in payment was because you did not adhere to the requirements of the post (keywords, link, etc.). That was identified and you were notified to adjust the post. Once that was accomplished, the payment was released."

- Ummm, no - that did NOT happen. I never said I was paid late. This is what I said: "I have altered the post to take out the links because honestly, this company deserves nothing from me. I had to wait 30 days from the date this post went live in order to receive payment and fulfill my end of the deal per the paid blogging company's TOS - now that it has been over 30 days, all bets are off!" - this means that after I WAS PAID (I had to wait 30 days as that is what the paid bogging company requires for all posts as they must be live for 30 days and then payment is sent.) So, only AFTER receiving payment did I remove links, already Sharon is mistaken.


"Part of what my company and team do for our clients when we use blog posts is follow their branding guidelines and insure we protect their reputation. As part of that service one of my team members made the decision (without input from Beads of Cambay) to remove you as a blogger with the concern that your beliefs may be offensive to some people. Our client, Beads of Cambay in no way was responsible for that ban and was not consulted in that decision."

- I know all about branding and marketing since I have been working for an excellent SEO firm. That being said, I also know it's NOT best practice for a team member (employee) to make any decision for a client without consulting them - at least not a decision like this. Tell me Sharon, did this team member realize that these were the categorie chosen (meaning blogs in the aforementioned categories were to be accepted.) I see 'alternative lifestyle' and 'religion and spirituality' I'd have to say this blog fits perfectly.


"The decision to ban you was simply a subjective decision based on what that person knew and believed to be best for the client at that time."

- So this person made a decision for your client without consulting the client, based on their very ignorant ideals - I guess they didn't realize that many Pagans are very craft and talented.


"We were not making any judgement about you or your beliefs but simply a business decision that we believed would serve our client."

- Okay, this part is just stupid. Sharon, how can you say I was not being judged based on my beliefs? I was obviously being judged on something and if it wasn't my beliefs, then what was it?

Oh wait, it WAS my beliefs because this was the response I got:
Yes, it says, " I don't prefer my client's to advertise on a Pagan Community website."
Yup, it was obviously what this team member wanted - no input from the client? WOW - way to run a business.


"Please however know that Beads of Cambay was not involved in this decision and did not condone or approve it. They welcome purchases from all people and do not discriminate in any way."

- If this is infact true, then my apologies to the company Beads of Cambay. Unfortunately, it was Beads of Cambay that hired this company to represent them - maybe hey need to be more mindful of whom they allow to do their marketing and public relations because I am betting that .ComMarketing has cost them lots of customers and money. Wonder how they will feel about all this?

Let's look at just what some of my readers said about the original post I made back in October 2008: Comment RSS feed

This entry was posted on Thursday, August 6, 2009 at Thursday, August 06, 2009 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

2 comments

Lyn  

OMG - that is such an insulting email to receive. To be removed because your beliefs may be insulting to some people is just wrong. Each and every one of us hold some beliefs which may be insulting to someone else - that seems, unfortunately, to be the nature of us humans.

Well, as a pagan who does bead (shock horror!!) I'll be avoiding Beads of Cambay. They may not have been responsible for the ban but they should be more careful about hiring companies who have no religious tolerance (and isn't that illegal btw????). And if I want to make a few extra £s from my blog - I know I won't be going to .ComMarketing

Thanks for sharing this with us!

August 8, 2009 at 10:21 AM
Witchy Mama  

Yes, I agree - she certainly sent me a convoluted and contradictory email. In fact, I think she made things worse!

I don't do paid blogging anymore -

August 8, 2009 at 10:45 AM

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