My experience with paid reviews

I have no doubt that a good percentage of Blogging Tips readers found the blog because of a paid review on another site. In total I have so far paid for 8 reviews over a period of about 6 weeks and since I don’t plan on getting any more reviews for a while I thought it was as good a time as any to talk about my experience with this advertising medium.

Six of the paid reviews were through ReviewMe and 2 of the reviews were paid directly via Paypal. As you guys know, I’m happy to cut out the middle man 🙂

The Blog’s I paid chose to get a review on

I have posted in the past about what you should look for when choosing a blog to advertise on and I have also gave an insight into what sort of blog I was looking for in my post ‘Why paying for a review on JohnTP was worth the money‘.

In brief, I was looking for blogging related blogs which could expose Blogging Tips to bloggers who did not know about the site. So my main factors for choosing a blog for a paid review was number of subscribers and value for money. It should also be noted that I paid for a review on blogs which I have personally commentated on or on blogs whose main author has commentated here. Clearly there is a bigger chance of a favourable review from someone you have a good relationship with.

So without further ado, here is a list of the blogs I paid for a review on and my reason for choosing it.

FuzzyFuture

Cost of review : $60 via ReviewMe
Review posted : May 5th 2007
Reason : FuzzyFuture’s posts were getting a lot of comments at the time and the $60 pricetag proved to be great value.

Pure Blogging

Cost of review : $60 via ReviewMe
Review posted : May 8th 2007
Reason : Another blog which was getting a lot of comments at the time and priced paid reviews very fairly.

Carlo Cab

Cost of review : $50 via ReviewMe
Review posted : May 10th 2007
Reason : Although CarloCab.com was cheap and had a lot of subscribers, the main reason for choosing this blog was the audience. CarloCab is targeted more towards younger/newbie bloggers and I was hoping that some of the articles at Blogging Tips would appeal to them.

John Chow

Cost of review : $300 via ReviewMe
Review posted : May 10th 2007
Reason : Thousands of subscribers and a huge amount of influence at a price which I believe to be extremely competitive.

Cash Quests

Cost of review : $40 Direct Order
Review posted : May 11th 2007
Reason : Over 500 subscribers at $40! An absolute bargain in my opinion and why I nearly bit off Kumiko’s fingers when she told me the price. Kumiko’s blog was about making money via blogging and the blog had good traffic and a cheap price. Choosing this was a no brainer for me.

Blog About Your Blog

Cost of review : $46 via ReviewMe
Review posted : June 9th 2007
Reason : Another good blog which I chose due to the number of rss subscribers and the price of the review.

John TP

Cost of review : $150 Direct Order
Review posted : June 10th 2007
Reason : John TP’s tech blog cover’s a lot of subjects however he does post a lot about wordpress so clearly a vast majority of the 1000+ subscribers could be interested in Blogging Tips. I’ve posted about this in more details in this post.

Zac Johnson

Cost of review : $76 via ReviewMe
Review posted : June 15th 2007
Reason : I had noticed Zac comment on a lot on other blogs so was aware of his blog. A good price, a lot of rss subscribers and the fact most of his commentators were not commentating at Blogging Tips made my decision to get a review there an easy one.

As you can see from my reasons above, I paid for reviews on blogs who gave good value for money. It’s very easy for blogs to overprice themselves but the blogs I choose all set their review price fairly. 🙂

The Review Aftermath

I have been very fortunate in that the reviews have all been fairly positive. The main criticism in most reviews was about the design of the blog but that is something I have worked on since the reviews. I do try my best with the design aspect of the blog but alas, design is not my forte. However, I was very pleased that most reviewers praised the posts on Blogging Tips.

I have seen a steady rise in subscribers after each review was posted but the traffic I received after my review was published on John Chow was nothing short of amazing.

The John Chow Effect

Sods law strikes from time to time and for me it happened on the day John reviewed Blogging Tips. John chose to post his review of Blogging Tips 4 or 5 hours before i was catching a bus to travel around New Zealand for 4 weeks – eek!!!. I had woke up early that morning and decided to quickly check my emails etc for an hour or so before i went for the bus at 7.30am. I had about 50 emails or so already from bloggers and the number of subscribers jumped through the roof. I was very pleased to say the least 🙂

Now you guys all know i despise Alexa but the graph it displays for Blogging Tips does give an indication of the day Blogging Tips was reviewed on John Chow. Have a look at the screen print below and see if you know when it was published.

Blogging Tips Alexa Stats

This highlights how you can actually get more bang for your buck by spending a few extra dollars.

The future of paid reviews at Blogging Tips

I am a huge fan of paid reviews however the need for me to advertise the blog using this method reduces as time goes on because more and more people know about the site. However, I wouldn’t rule out using it again in the future for a big announcement or something similar to that. I am also planning on spending a lot of money via ReviewMe to promote one of my other websites on blogs.

In my opinion, paid reviews are one of the best ways to launch a new blog or website and I will definately continue to use them myself in the future for just that. If you compare the cost of a paid review to advertising on an ad network like google adsense I believe paid reviews will prove to be much better value for money.

In the next few months i will start offering paid reviews on Blogging Tips so it will be interesting to be at the other side of the fence. Rest assured I will only be reviewing blogs and websites which are related to blogging.

I hope that you have enjoyed this post and I hope that it has helped those considering ordering paid reviews in some way.

Thanks,

Kevin

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Disclosure: In full disclosure, it is safe to assume that the site owner is benefiting financially or otherwise from everything you click on, read, or look at while on my website. This is not to say that is the case with all content, as all publications on the site are original and written to provide value and references to our audience.

16 Comments

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