Jon Waraas, a blogger that I frequent, has recently launched a new service called Buy Blog Comments that allows you to purchase blog comments. According to the website, his company hires blog specialists to provide valid comments on blogs that fit the client’s niche. The service will allow these site owners to build relevant back links and eventually increase their search engine rankings.
I found Jon’s business idea to be rather fascinating. He has found a unique opportunity and developed a business around it. However, other bloggers did not find his idea so welcoming. ProBlogger, Mashable, and others have all scolded Jon’s company as a serious blow to the integrity of the blogging community. Although I think Jon has a great business idea, I have to agree with the concerns expressed by fellow bloggers. But before I get into that, let me explain why Jon has a great idea and why I think it could be successful.
First, we should realize that the foundation of Jon’s idea isn’t new. It’s the most basic form of advertising where companies want their product presented to consumers who would be most interested in that product. This is why you see Nike sneaker ads throughout SLAM magazine and not Seventeen magazine.
In today’s world, the advertising medium has expanded from simply print media to the internet. Google became a powerhouse from this transition. Nearly every blog you visit, including mine, has Google ads all over it. The service has been successful because the ads appear on sites that are most relevant to the advertiser.
Even more recent, spin-offs of this concept have developed specifically for the blogosphere. Services like Text Link Ads, Pay Per Post, and Review Me all provide advertising space on blogs. Like Jon, these companies recognize the growing power of Blogs as a major advertising medium on the internet. They knew that businesses would pay to have their products appear on blogs which are visited by potential consumers. What they may, or may not have recognized is that by having their products appear on several blogs, they also build back links that inevitably increase their search engine ranks; a major bonus to be a successful company.
Jon’s company provides a new twist on what these other companies have done. Like Pay Per Post, Review Me and Text Link Ads, clients will be able to acquire several back links for their website. And, the clients are assured that these links are being accessed by consumers who would be interested in their products. It’s a cheap way to find targeted customers!
Quite frankly, I think Jon will do well. I think people will purchase his services as they already have through other similar companies.
Now here is where Jon’s company significantly deviates from the other companies. You (and me), the bloggers, have no control over who comments on your site. Well, let me clarify… You can delete comments, but you may not know whether the person who commented on your site was legitimate or not.
As the owner of this website, I believe that it is my right to be able to control what content appears on my site. I prefer to have legitimate comments from individuals who enjoy reading my posts. I do not want someone to post simply because they want their link on my site. Folks, this is SPAM! Not Spam for email, but Spam for unsolicited comments.
With TextLinkAds, ReviewMe, and PayPerPost, I have the option to remove (or not use) the service on my site. With Jon’s service, I have no such option. Comments could be coming from anyone!
And now, we have an ethical debate… bum bum bummm! I’m not going to buy blog comments… are you?