Lately, there’s been much ‘to do’ about sponsored posts in the blogosphere. Recent articles written by Marcy Massura ( How the Blogger Killed Herself Off) and Dianne Jacob (It’s Official: Readers Don’t like Sponsored Posts) have been at the forefront of the discussion and I agree with many of the things (against sponsored posting) that they say. For example, I don’t feel that many of these ‘regular reviewer’ bloggers disclose their actual opinions of the free products (they have reduced credibility to me) and often I do see these blogs as ‘sell outs’. The reality is that these types of blogs do have a large following which is why they get chosen to promote products on a regular basis. As a reader if I happen upon a blog that is nothing but product reviews or product placement and contests, it doesn’t take long before I’m out of there. Nobody likes commercials breaking up their favourite TV show so why would they want to read nothing but these ‘ads’ on a blog?
As a blogger I understand the temptation. Who doesn’t want to gain lots of followers and blog exposure? I’m not going to lie and say that I don’t feel anything when my follower count increases (it is thrilling to be recognized for something you enjoy doing) but I work really hard to make sure that I gain exposure for the right reasons. I may be a bit old fashioned but I still want to see people enjoying my food or going out to a restaurant because my blog post has led them there. On the very odd chance that I do a product review you will know exactly what I think of it.
Is it interesting that I’ve chosen to begin this Pulo Cuisine product review with that introduction?
This is one of those rare times that I actually was sent something to try out and in this case everyone who applied via Food Bloggers of Canada was sent the product. I applied because I know absolutely nothing about Filipino cuisine and figured that this was a good chance to try out unknown flavours. I bought some of the sauces and marinades before receiving the shipment and my daughter make meatballs with one of the marinades. They were okay, but I insisted that she added more ‘fresh’ ginger, garlic, and other ingredients to pep the sauce up a bit.
After I received the productss I wanted to use one of the marinades as intended as a baseline flavour test. This gave me a chance to taste the flavours of the marinade in a simple, uncluttered way. These flanken style beef ribs were marinated for about 6 hours in the Lemongrass Atsuete sauce and I still had a difficult time distinguishing the marinade flavour. Maybe chicken would have been better but to be perfectly honest making a marinade is not all that difficult and a bottled sauce is never as good as fresh ingredients.
This is definitely a case of me being excited to try a product and the product not meeting me expectations. The sauces were not horrible or repulsive, they were just okay.
I’m going to continue to try out the product but for now…the jury’s out on Pulo Cuisine sauces and marinades.
Afterthought: Everyone has the right to blog how they like and to find that niche that works for them. I only know what I like to read on a blog and what I am comfortable with as a blogger.