SponsoredReviews.com: Should you waste your time?

SponsoredReviews is kind of an oddball site, one that I have not been successful getting any placements. To explain, SponsoredReviews is one of the many sites that have sprung up offering sponsored posts for bloggers.

The model for this is quite simple: advertisers need places to publicize their websites, bloggers offer a targeted audience, regular updates and, in many cases, a great venue to host such advertisements. To fill this void by matching advertisers with bloggers, a number of companies have started offering middle-men type services to aggregate either offers for bloggers (as in Payperpost.com) or aggregate blogs for advertisers (as in ReviewME.com).

Into this market jumped SponsoredReviews whose model is a mixed model of matching bidders with offers. The system is simple: Advertisers offer opportunities, and bloggers offer blogs. Both have ranges of pricing which can be edited. Bloggers log in and check out the offers from Advertisers, as in the graphic. advertisers

They then submit offers based on their understanding, and advertisers log in and can make counteroffers, until a deal is struck. In principle, this should involve several rounds of toing and froing to reach consensus.

In practice, there are a number of problems with this system that make the system less than optimal for all users. The first is that Sponsored Reviews itself doesn’t present enough information to reviewers or advertisers about the process, resulting in aberrations of the process. Sponsored Reviews needs desperately to educate all its users to the process as it really is intended to be: a match making service that allows multiple bids until consensus is or is not reached. That is deal making.

sponsoredreviews

The second problem is that bidders on both sides are seeking to maximize their own prices or costs. Increasingly advertisers are restricting the range of prices that they are willing to accept for the opportunities. Thus, seeing ranges as little as $5 or $0 is not unusual now: e.g. 100 words: NewHomesForSale.*.* – Largest * Property $5 – $5 is currently on offer. Bloggers are on the other hand increasing the prices of posting on their blog well above what advertisers are willing to pay for their blogs. The result is that fewer deals are getting done as both parties are being marginalized. That’s okay for both parties as they can find other places to match their deals, but for Sponsored Reviews, it’s not good. They really need to encourage both parties to respond to offers by bidding more creatively and more frequently.

Lastly, the speed at which most offers are reviewed is way to slow for such a service. I’ve placed 14 offers and been refused on 5. But 9 offers are still outstanding for advertisers. This is money on the table that is going to get up and leave unless the speed of dealing is cranked up.

So, while I was initially impressed with SponsoredReviews.com smooth operations, I feel that there are currently significant hurdles that need to be overcome before they can be a match for the older and more effective solutions, like Payperpost.com. For bloggers, sign up anyway as it’s free and you’ll have fun exploring the system. For advertisers, sign up but be prepared when you don’t get any bites, or initial offers are too high. The system is designed to encourage experimentation: a fact that is lost on most users, and the importance of which seems lost on SponsoredReviews.com administration.

I’m an unsuccessful user of SponsoredReviews.com but this is not sponsored.

 

Author: InvestorBlogger

Investorblogger.com takes you on a 'Random Walk To Wealth' through money, investing, blogging and tech. We'll explore my insights, mistakes, and experiences together.

18 thoughts on “SponsoredReviews.com: Should you waste your time?

  1. Jarrod Hunt

    Kenneth,

    All of your points are well taken. And all of them are in the process of being repaired. We will be launching updates over the next couple of weeks that are designed to resolve the issues you are mentioning.

    One of the primary problems is the massive amounts of bloggers that are participating. Most advertisers receive 100’s of bids within days. This is a lot for the advertisers to sort through, and because our system allows our advertisers to approve every bid, it can be a slow process.

    We will be launching filter capabilities within a week. This will allow advertisers to target which bloggers they want to receive bids from.. Category, Rating etc… That way neither the bloggers nor the advertisers time is wasted.

    You are also spot-on about the lack of education. We will be launching several tutorials and beefing up the FAQ’s and introductions very soon.

    Anyways, thanks for the excellent feedback. I hope you will enjoy the new changes we launch soon.

  2. Investorblogger

    Thanks, Jarrod. I think that segmentation has generally worked for Payperpost, though at the beginning it increased the number of problems. I look forward, too to reading the FAQs. If you don’t mind, I’ll come back and give the changes a write up at that time!

    Hope Sponsored Reviews is a roaring success. I do feel that there is plenty of room at the moment for different models to be tried out, with PPP being one, SR being another, and Blogitive being a slightly different approach. It’s interesting to see which will be more successful.

    Best Wishes
    Kenneth

  3. skeet

    I was approved by Sponsored Reviews yesterday. It will probably be few days before I attempt to actually do anything with their advertisers, as I’m still exploring the system and getting comfortable with it. Having done only PPP in the past, I’m a little spoiled; in the past I could either have an opp or not, no extra input from me required. I’m looking forward to finding out what sort of fit I am for this system.

    I’m viewing your site in IE. The text boxes in both left and right sidebars are appearing in different widths and some are overlapping your post content, cutting off some words and making reading difficult. Thought you would want to know. I’m having problems with photos on my own blog right now, with some of them making it impossible to load or view my site in some browsers. It’s always something, isn’t it?

    And, hey – mahalo for the follow!

  4. Investorblogger

    Thanks for the comment. Yep. I noted this a few days ago. It’s the theme problem. It doesn’t cope well in IE with issues that are straightforward in FF. I’m planning to change to another theme in a few days. It does look fine in FF. But then IE isn’t a standard browser.

    I actually got an offer yesterday accepted. So I’m going to be doing a posting soon for SR. I’ve added some changes to my profile to encourage people to check out my reviews, but I think most of the issues still stand. Jarrod had some excellent comments in his post.

    Thanks

  5. kennethdickson Post author

    Did you register? You should, don’t wait for it to grow up. It looks like your blog is well established.

    best
    Kenneth

  6. AzDana

    Very insightful. I signed up for sponsoredreviews.com awhile ago and still have yet to receive a successful offer. I did have one advertiser offer me a net of $2.60 for a post, which I declined.

    I know I only have a PR1 right now, but I think that offer was much too low. There are other pay to blog sites that pay $5 for each and every post, so $5 is my absolute bare minimum right now. As my PR improves then my personal minimum will also increase. I know that there are others that are willing to post for less than what I’ll accept, and that’s fine with me. But I don’t know how an advertiser can expect any sort of quality work for less than three bucks a post.

  7. InvestorBlogger

    Yep, some of the low ball ads just don’t appeal to me at all. I think the thing to remember is that it’s a marketplace, so you can pick and choose if you shop right. PPP has encouraged a lot of us to upgrade our blogs with Alexa/PR and now Technorati, segmentation, and whatnot (which is great).

    But then they run promos to attract advertisers with $5 minimums and stiff requirements. So I’m getting mixed messages with them, too.

  8. kennethdickson Post author

    With SR, the advantage is that you can set your own prices, and negotiate prices, that’s way cool! You just have to hope that the advertisers understand it is a multiple bid system, not just an accept/refuse model. In fact, from the pricing that you currently see in SR, many advertisers don’t like that model (too much work for them?). I think that SR will be successful with higher profile bloggers, where the number of posts is in the low tens of figures. I think it might present a challenge for an advertiser to deal with 100 or even 1000 opps at a time!

    Jarrod has been working hard on updating the website with some good feedback. Let’s see how it develops.

  9. Opal

    Thanks for the informative post. I signed up for SR this morning. I’ve been approved and have placed a few bids. My PR is 5. Although, at the moment, I like PPP format a lot better I realize this is new territory I’m sure it will improve.

  10. InvestorBlogger

    Watch your bids, don’t be too aggressive! But don’t be too negative! SR is about to undergo a revision. Let’s hope it gets better! I did do an op! So there are advertisers out there!

    Kenneth

  11. Ginene

    I think it has good potential, however they should make sponsors give you reasons for rejecting a blog and make them respond in a reasonable time.

  12. kennethdickson Post author

    Yes, I can’t stand the wait for responses, it’s just not quite fast enough… I’m told they’re working on it!

    Kenneth

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