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Vaporizer Marketing...The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Discussion in 'The Vapor Lounge' started by lwien, Jul 13, 2014.

  1. lwien

    lwien Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,585
    Location:
    Arcadia, California
    So we've all seen some questionable things happen, eh, with the most recent here involving The Haze Vaporizer.

    Just as recently, I was over at GC when someone with his very first post (and this person only posted once and then disappeared, btw), posted up a very positive, glowing review on the Herbalizer along with official pics that were taken from the Herbalizer site. This issue was exacerbated by the fact that his review was a direct copy, word for word, of StickStones review that was posted up at the Herbalizer site. So we have a person that copied the pics from Herbalizer, copied Sticks review from Herbalzer, and then re-posted them over at GC all while presenting himself/herself as an end user. Not only that, but there was also a direct link to the Herbalizer site. And no, it was not Sticks who posted up this review over at GC.

    Was the guy, in fact, an employee of Herbalizer promoting the product over at GC, ie, a shill, or was he some random person who did this simply because he liked the product but didn't have the ability to write his own review or take his own pics, and just decided, with his very first post, to plagiarize all this info, and then disappear?

    This is far from the first time that we have seen stuff like this happen. We have seen shills and possible shills here before. The FC staff, in the past have busted some of them for creating false accounts here and have then been banned for doing so. And some of them have not been start-ups but in fact, VERY reputable manufactures who have been in the business for a very long time.

    I also have no doubt that there may also have been some legitimate end users that were so passionate about the product, that they were falsely accused of being a shill.

    In my opinion, it's a fine line here when someone is being accused of inappropriate marketing tactics when in fact, it may not be the case and this should be a major concern in that a companies reputation could be falsely put into question.

    On the other hand, I think it's also important to question questionable marketing tactics, not only to protect the end user, but also to hold the manufacturers feet to the fire so that, in the end, they can make the necessary adjustments to improve their marketing efforts.

    I think the mods here do a pretty good job in allowing this weeding out (pardon the play on words) process to take place while at the same time, trying to not only protect the end user from unethical marketing efforts, but also to protect the companies from being falsely accused of those efforts.

    Thoughts on how to weed out the good from the bad and ugly?

    I'll start. For me, one of the first clues is post count. When a glowing review is done by a posters very first post, for me, raises the red flag. Not necessarily guilty, but definitely suspicious.
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2014
  2. Caligula

    Caligula *results not typical.

    Messages:
    6,005
    Location:
    So Cal
    Quite honestly this happens in every market segment for every type of product. Automobile manufacturers bribing magazine writers for better reviews, large corporations paying teenagers to post positive reviews on yelp, video game companies paying off blogs... the list goes on and on (don't even get me started on restaurants).

    Both giant multi-national corporations as well as "mom & pop" shops are doing this and really all we can do as consumers is be aware if it when reading reviews online.
  3. lwien

    lwien Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,585
    Location:
    Arcadia, California
    When it's proven that this occurs with a specific company, does it taint your view of the product itself? Would you purchase a product from a company that does this, irrespective of the quality of the product?

    Would marketing ethics sway you in your purchasing decision?
  4. Farid

    Farid Previously Bob Hogan

    Messages:
    51
    When I got my MMj recommendation this Spring, my doctor asked me if I owned any vaporizers. When I told him I've owned a Thermovape, Firewood, MFLB, Lotus, Solo, and Da Buddha he ignored me and told me that he recommends a Pax. Then he went on trying to sell me one, going as far as showing me how to load one, and how to use it.

    Now I've never used a Pax, but after that visit I felt very negatively of the company's marketing tactics, and felt no need to try one after that. I had seen it being heavily advertised at lots of headshops and over on reddit, so I couldn't help but feel it was just being hyped.

    Keep in mind this negative experience was 100% based on the marketing, and had nothing to do with the vaporizer itself, which I still have yet to try myself. Also if the same hype had been given by a friend or someone reputable I may have believed them (that's what got me to try and fall in love with the SOLO), but my Dr. seemed bent on making a sale. He even went as far as saying conduction is better than convection vapour (???).
    VaporsVaporizer, grokit, 215z and 3 others like this.
  5. smokum

    smokum I am who I am and your approval isn't needed!

    Messages:
    1,515
    Location:
    Canaduhh
    I'm a consumer... not the morality nor ethics police.

    As such, If I have an interest in a product, want it, can afford it, and research the user satisfaction with it beyond the 'FLUFF'.... I purchase said product and hope to enjoy it, regardless of the marketing strategies or presentations. That goes for 'ANY' product.

    If I've erred in my decision and end up with a turd, I blame nobody other than myself in the end.

    I like being a big boy with the power of earnings to decide the things in life I choose to indulge in :myday::nod:
    VaporsVaporizer and 215z like this.
  6. grokit

    grokit power cosmic

    Messages:
    4,412
    Location:
    the north
    Looking for ethics in marketing/advertising is likes searching for accountability in government. You're not going to find it anywhere, but you might find quite a few words written about its academic merits.
    VaporsVaporizer and Fredster951 like this.
  7. tuk

    tuk Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    326
    It does for me, if the manuf. is resorting to lies and deception to sell their product then it basically means they have no confidence in their product. Then I'm wondering what else they are hiding or lying about, ...then there's the after sales service.

    If the product is good enough and does what it says on the tin...it will sell itself without any underhand marketing strategy.
  8. lwien

    lwien Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,585
    Location:
    Arcadia, California
    I don't agree that you won't find it "anywhere" for there are always exceptions, eh?

    What is true, however, is that looking for ethics in the retail arena is a rarity (and this is coming from someone who was a retail/marketing exec for over 30 years), but there are exceptions there as well.......witness Randy over at PuffitUP. It's rare and that is why that when I find a retailer that puts service and ethics high on their list of priorities, I will be a customer of theirs for life.

    But when it comes to ethics from a manufacturer, I hold them and my expectations to an even higher standard.

    And I agree with Tuk. If a manufacture is going to be deceitful in their marketing, can you trust them when they say, as an example, that their product is safe to use and that it's really made with medical grade materials?

    Of course, all of this gets compounded when this happens to a product that is brand new on the market simply because their is no track record as of yet to prove their viability.
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2014
    VaporsVaporizer and Farid like this.

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