The Bloggess vs. Brand Link Communications: The Real Problem with the Email

Yesterday I received an email not at all unlike the dozens of similar emails I receive each day that went something like this,

“The Kardashians did something. Write about it on your blog.”**

Clearly the sender of this email – who thinks my name is “There” – has never been to my blog or they would have seen that I blog about parenting, Disney, and myself not hosiery, celebrities, single moms or Armenian-Americans.

When I receive a pitch that is a bad fit from a PR firm that I know and respect such as Fleishman-Hillard, Weber Shandwick, or the fabulous ladies of Litzky, I respond with a friendly email that it simply is not a fit at this time, and we both carry on with our days.  When I get a pitch like the Kardashian one from a company like Brand Link Communications, I don’t picture the same professionals that I work with on a daily basis in the PR world. I picture a room full of twenty-three year olds who are blasting emails all day to blogger lists they have purchased and then heading out for drinks with the camera guys from TMZ.  I just delete the emails and go on with my day.

But yesterday Brand Link Communications sent this same ridiculous email to someone who did not just go on with her day.  Instead, Jenny from The Bloggess replied with her characteristic snark, which they would have anticipated had they ever actually read her blog.  What happened next has the social media world buzzing.

Jose, a PR rep at Brand Link Communications, hit “reply all” and called Jenny a f****** b****.

At this point, Jenny did what any amazingly funny and irreverent blogger would do.  She blogged about it.  For those of you who don’t follow blogger drama or maybe actually slept last night, you probably missed that Twitter was on fire over Jose’s response to the Bloggess, and in a couple of hours he will likely be dumping his bobble-head dolls and iPhone charging station into a box, headed off to find a new job at an equally seedy firm.

But my problem is not with Jose.  Beyond the fact that he is obviously technologically challenged (Reply all? Really?), he’s clearly unprofessional.  Who sends the f-bomb around to their co-workers? In fact, I’d bet our pal Jose has enough quarters in the douche jar to send my whole family right back to Disney.  He’s a non-entity.

What really upset me was the response Jenny received from the woman at Brand Link Communications who actually intended to write back to her.  As Jenny shared in her post, the response to Jenny’s very funny thanks but no thanks email included this:

We send certain pitches out to people so they have the chance of getting more hits on their page.

Remember that guy in high school who tried to convince you that if you did that to him, you’d suddenly be one of the popular girls?  But really you knew that he wasn’t worth that and so he had to try to trick unsuspecting girls into believing it was all to help them in some way.

Yeah.  That’s what this is.

So while we’re all up in arms about Jose’s douch-baggery move, I think we’re missing the point.  Not only are there PR firms out there sending out completely ridiculous blasts of pitches – which they’ll continue to do as they lose client after unsatisfied client – but there are still some PR professionals who think that bloggers really buy that they’re doing us a favor by sending us that schlock. Has any parenting blogger really received an email about Kourtney Kardashian wearing letters all over her legs and said, “I KNOW! If I post this, suddenly my blog that gets 500 visitors a month will blast to the top of Google search for the word Kardashian, one of the most highly searched words!”?

And yes, I get that earned media outlets send pitches to bloggers because we are members of the new media.  I have no beef with that and often write posts inspired by those pitches.  But if Brand Link Communications was sending this pitch to print media, would they have included such irrelevant magazines as National Geographic, The Atlantic, and Highlights for Children or would they have taken the time to focus their outreach on celebrity and fashion magazines?

Forget Jose.  Forget the bad pitch.  Just stop patronizing bloggers, believing that we’re stupid enough to fall for the “we’re doing you a favor by allowing you to cover this story” line.  It’s so very 2006 and this blogger is over it.

**Actual Email

Hi There!

Just wanted to share this season’s Mommy must have accessory! Have a great day and if you have any other questions please don’t hesitate to ask! Thank you.

“Teaching Mason the ABC’s is as Easy as 1-2-3!”

Our favorite celebrity mom Kourtney Kardashian is proving that fashion doesn’t have to stop on the streets, but instead showing that “education is chic.” And what better way to teach your little one the ABC’s than by wearing this season’s hottest accessory, House of Holland for Pretty Polly hosiery. The Kardashian’s once again show they are right on trend, and this is on Mommy’s are all going to want to follow.

Brand: House of Holland for Pretty Polly

Description: Pretty Polly

Retail: $30.00


  1. 38

    btw – those panty hose are HORRENDOUS!
    Jessica recently posted..Swim Lessons – I’m becoming "that" mom

  2. 39
    Paula schuck says:

    I was anxious to read your take on this. It was a ridiculous email in the first place. What really upsets me about it is that I know some bloggers who will blog about the topic of her nylons for that very reason.

    Paula schuck recently posted..Me – On Being Thankful and Cancer Scares

    • 40

      If I were a fashion blogger, I might blog about it – MIGHT – but I wouldn’t blog about the fact that babies will learn the alphabet if their moms wear those tights. That is so silly I almost thought it was a joke!

  3. 41

    I’m actually really pissed that BrandLink thinks that I (as the READER of parenting blogs) actually have THIRTY DOLLARS to fork over for a pair of really ugly pantyhose, or that as a mother I get to dress up in pantyhose all that often in the first place.

    Question: Do those ugly ass Wicked Witch shoes come with the pantyhose?
    Lorca DAmon recently posted..How Come I’m Not The Incredible Hulk?

  4. 42

    While the idiotic pitches are pretty bad, the discouraging part is that 3 years later, Jose is still VP and people are still reading about his gaffe. I took time to note what companies he represents and will not be using their products and will e-mail them to let them know why.


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