About a month ago, I got an email from a PR person at POM Wonderful, the pomegranate juice company, asking if I was interested in a promotional pack of their juice. I thought it kind of odd, as they’ve been around for at least a couple years now, but, y’know, free stuff. I emailed them back my usual ass-covering response — basically saying, “sure, so long as you understand I don’t have to write about it or if I do, I don’t have to say anything nice about it.” I didn’t hear back; I just got a box filled with 16-ounce bottles of juice with a bunch of press releases about the company and the results of studies the potential health benefits of pomegranate juice.
The health information was a little overly-hyped, but a few of the studies were actually quite interesting. (I was looking forward to talking about the one regarding erectile function improvement because I’m a 12-year-old like that.) Still, nothing there really seemed especially newsworthy. Nothing was new or improved about this juice. Nothing had changed recently about the way people thought about pomegranate juice.
I was still thinking about what to write about this juice, when I saw another food blogger mention she also got a box of POM. And then another blogger said the same. And then another.
Any pressing need to write about POM completely evaporated. As the days went by, the bottles of juice receded further and further into the back of the fridge and when they did catch my eye, I’d think, oh, I should write about that, I guess… But between there being no actual news to report and the evidently huge distribution of their product to food bloggers, the answer to that thought became but why bother?
Still, I suppose I still feel obligated in some way to write about it. So…
POM Wonderful: some not-very-new juice that tastes pretty much like cranberry. Scientists say drinking it a lot gives you 50% more boners?
And let this be a lesson to other food PR people — everyone likes to get free stuff, but if you expect bloggers to write about your product, send something new or improved or, at the very least, don’t send it to every single food blogger you can find. Otherwise, all you get is a blog post about your rubbish PR.