Trust (and opinions)
Full story with links is here. (caution: it's a long post, but worth the read).
Is getting (paying?) people to mention your catch-phrases in a catchy, sneaky way in their blog posts the same as advertising?
Advertising is obvious. Sneaky is just sneaky. (Until it gets outed. And then it's just silly.)
Is sneaky wrong?
Would I ever do it?
Is advertising on blogs wrong?
No. Bloggers put a lot of time, thought and trouble into maintaining their sites. I can understand receiving monetary value from that time, thought and trouble. But for me, I just never want anyone to worry or wonder if my opinions are influenced by anything other than my opinions--however right or wrong you find my opinions to be. I get paid through the value of learning from and meeting you fine folks. (Plus my blog is prettier without ads.)
Why is this stuff so darn important to me?
Which begs the question...can one take trust too seriously?
I certainly don't think so.
Because trust is the single most valuable asset one can have (be it a person or a brand). It's equivalent to respect and you have to earn, and be worthy, of trust. Unfortunately, many companies--and many people--don't realize how important trust is.
Until they lose it.
But hey, that's just my opinion.