Brand Fan Launches Gatorade Blog
ESPN sports business writer Darren Rovell, author of soon-to-be-published The First in Thirst: How Gatorade Turned The Science of Sweat Into A Cultural Phenomenon, has launched a weblog called Darren Rovell's Gatorade Blog. He's obviously a Gatorade fan but when we asked if Gatorade is behind the blog, Rovell said, "The book and the blog are completely unauthorized. I have their cooperation, but I report on the good and the bad and they know that. They have no editorial control over anything."
Assuming Gatorade truly has no influence over Rovell's blog, like the That Pepsi Girl blog, we can add this to the list of consumer brand advocate initiatives that have proliferated since the advent of "citizen's media." There's really no reason why a person couldn't or shouldn't write about a brand they love and, in doing so, become popular and aid the brand in spreading the it's message. The trick, though is proper disclosure and a clear delineation of the line between official brand messaging and unofficial.
After our conversation and to make clear the non-association with Gatorade, Rovell added the word "unauthorized" to the tagline of the blog which now reads, "An Unauthorized Look One of America's Most Dominant Brands."
Great post. Transparency and disclosure is key.