|© E. Glavin|
Tanner and I Enjoy the Bonding Activities
of Reviewing New Toys and Pet Products
What a great question! This topic came up among bloggers at a recent conference where everyone was chatting about the challenges of writing a compelling product review. My thoughts caught the group off guard. My approach was different, and perhaps it seemed odd to some. Here's how it works here. I can't and won't speak for other bloggers, but I do think my readers could benefit from understanding my philosophy and method.
Most of my product reviews are/were pre-selected from an actual product at a convention--Global Pet Expo. That means I saw, handled, played with, read about and asked questions about the product before I even agreed to review it. As I told my blogger compadres, I'm not the sort of person who can write a seething review. I'll turn it down before I'll crucify a company. I just don't have it in me. That means that if I don't like it, you won't hear about it here.
Of course, that's not to say that I won't share my concerns with the owner. I have--more than a few times--turned down reviews that I could not support, would not recommend, and most importantly, would never use with my own dogs. That's where the decision comes to a rest--Tanner and Oliver. If I can't use it with or for them because I don't believe in it, I most certainly cannot tell you it is wonderful and give away a box of them just to get traffic to visit my blog.
There's another angle to this that I'd love to address. Not all of my readers can afford to purchase the organic food that I recommend or are willing to shell out their hard earned bucks for dog toys when their kids need shoes. It's these readers that support my blog's mission--to help those who need information or freebies in order to keep their dogs. So, while I offer an Ask the Vet Column and an Ask the Dog Trainer Column, and I review products and write problem solving articles, I also occasionally give away free products that I cannot review. They don't quite come up to snuff for my standards, yet they are useful and have their place in many homes.
I'm happy to share these samples and conference swag as a fun way to share the excess that sometimes comes my way. I hope you enjoy anything you receive in such giveaways, but if not, please pass it along to someone who will. Thank you for your time and please know that I appreciate your support and your interest in learning more about what you can do to make your life with dogs easier and more enjoyable. Together we can help keep more furry family members right where they belong, and not relinquished to a rescue. That's my ultimate goal. How can I help you?