General Mills is now using a blog-influencing campaign to encourage over 900 bloggers to try their products and blog about them. The network, MyBlogSpark, is distributing free product samples for the group to try.
Brandweek’s Brian Morrissey mentioned in his article that, “The company (General Mills) suggests bloggers inform readers they receive products for review, although that is not a requirement for participation in the program. It does not compensate the bloggers in any other way, according to David Witt, brand public relations manager for the company.”
Moving forward, I think corporations reaching out to influential bloggers is a good strategy. However, as we made clear in our previous post (CARNIVAL) it is vital that these bloggers clearly disclose the nature of their relationship with said corporation.
At the present time, General Mills does not have a policy like this in place. I feel they should require their members to disclose their relationship in order to participate in the network, instead of taking advantage of the FTC’s sluggishness in putting forth legislation that addresses this issue.
What are your thoughts on bloggers disclosing their relationships with corporations?