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Nov 7

How Not To Get Reviews

Posted on Thursday, November 7, 2013 in World of CO

ryj_cigar_box_closedYa know, sometimes companies do things that just make me shake my head. They just don’t think things through IMO.

Right after I got the press release you see below, now I get this email about the cigars:

Dear Altadis USA friends,

We are once again very proud to introduce an outstanding cigar to the market.

We wanted this experience to be magical, that’s why first 15 bloggers who send me the link of their magical, innovative and creative R y J reviews at xxxxxxx@altadisusa.com will receive a box of the new R y J to share with fans and friends. The reviews will also be posted on Montecristo Social Club and on The Cigar Life Facebook.

Looking forward to receiving magical reviews and pictures.

Enjoy your cigars!

I have multiple issues with this. First and foremost it’s trying to buy reviews (presumably good ones). Unfortunately, I know it works. I have had many, many experiences of reviewing a cigar that was covered elsewhere with quite frankly a steaming pile of BS. There exists a large and ever present group of ‘cigar reviewers’ that are simply in it for the free cigars. Read/watch the industry sites long enough and you can tune in to spot it in seconds.

Companies that try gimmicks like this only perpetuate the poor/dishonest habits of some others. I completely understand the need for marketing and the need for companies to get new releases reviewed ASAP. But the ONLY way to do so honestly is through hands-off, uncompensated means.

Never mind the fact that ‘reviewing’ these samples right away will undoubtedly give a different experience than letting them acclimate never mind what they will be like on the shelf for the public to actually smoke.

If a company wants to send product for personal use or in a giveaway, etc. that’s all well and good of course! But it should ONLY be after a review goes up. There should NEVER be any sort of pressure or artificial enticement.

I am in no hurry whatsoever to review these now. They would have gone in to my normal rotation and probably would have been done in a month or so. If this rubs someone the wrong way and they now don’t even send me samples, so be it. But now you can all be aware of reviews you see in the near future of these and what went on.

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Bring on the comments

  1. yosef5 says:

    I support you totally

  2. dettigers6 says:

    I agree that’s why I only trust your reviews. keep up the good work.

  3. rockjock says:

    And that is why you have a large and growing following. I don’t always agree with your reviews, but I always respect them.

  4. cigarraider says:

    You should write a “magical, innovative and creative” review of how low and manipulative their tactics are.

  5. lbuzzer says:

    Magical reviews? I haven’t seen a magical review from Bryan yet. I have seen dozens of honest, straight-forward reviews that I trust. Thank you sir.

  6. ParadiseCove says:

    Exactly why you are numero uno..amigo!

  7. LV2HNT says:

    I told you when I found this your site, That I liked your site because of the honest and simple review. And how many YouTubers call them self reviewers??? ha ha ha

    Thanks for an honest and good review system we can trust.

  8. Texvet says:

    That is a pretty low rent way to get/buy quick favorable reviews. Then again, with a box like that, maybe they need to buy reviews.

  9. ABrooks80 says:

    First of all Bryan Thanks a lot for responding to an email that I sent to you. Your right about others who are in it for the wrong reasons wish that vendors could see that. Another pet p of mine is that of the owner of Bucanero’s cigar’s too. I have seen and experienced it first hand owners of B&M shops the grass roots guys if I may say that don’t introduce people to good boutique stix come on let’s get the word out. That is why I am a subscriber and respect what you do Bryan keep up the good work. And I’m grateful you are doing this.

  10. Joseph Szeremet says:

    Thanks for the heads. This tacit is absolute crap. This kind of thing tells me that they know this is a just another boring Romeo y Julieta stick, that they have no confidence in to get good reviews on its own. Now I understand how the Romeo won the number 3 spot in Cigar Aficionado’s top 25 a couple of years ago. Way to squash consumer confidence Altadis!

  11. davidr says:

    I’m not all that surprised that this goes on with cigar reviews. It goes on in Washington D.C. With lobbyists etc. I don’t mean to get political, but we are all aware of the “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” syndrome. Its great that Bryan is so transparent. No funny business with his reviews.

  12. abu1555 says:

    100% with you…well said,Kudos to you my friend

  13. MDSPHOTO says:

    Yes but BG you have ethics and most idiots with a blog do not and will suck-up for free stuff. It’s like the crappy movies that list the review as “the greatest cinematic experience since Gone With The Wind” by Jim Bob’s hot dog shack. They do it so they can get invited to the next movie premiere.

  14. Bombora42 says:

    Thumbs up on the integrity, bro! Just added a ton of credibility to your reviews, keep up the great work!

  15. mvedric says:

    I like your style Bryan.

  16. Philly5800 says:

    Bryan, I hear what you’re saying, but what’s the benefit of publicly insulting cigar-giant Altadis, especially when you’re trying to make money in the same industry? Next year’s ICPCR should be fun.

  17. Jerry Haltzer says:

    I see stogie review got a review up real quick for this bad boy. Yet they claim to not even know about a free box of cigars? Pretty shady McGrady.

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