Troy-Bilt again for the second year in a row and it's caused a war in my head.
On one side there's the voice saying to just announce it. Be positive, sterile. Something like "I've teamed up with Troy-Bilt again! I'm so excited to be able to review their awesome products, give some away, write some articles for them because, hey! I love to write about gardening!" On the other side there's what I really want to say about it. And the same ole question over whether I'm being too personal. If I write what I really want to, will Troy-Bilt be disappointed in me? What if my fellow bloggers call me an ass-kisser? A shill? But at the end of the day, when a blogger stops being authentic all in the name of product endorsements, it's over! Right?
Here's the truth. Last year I was so shocked (flattered) that Troy-Bilt asked me to become one of 6 bloggers in a new program they were trying that I couldn't stop questioning why they'd pick me, of all people. I know a lot of you thought the same thing, whether you said it or wrote it or not. It ended up being such a pleasant experience that I'd made up my mind when it was all over I would write an open letter to Troy-Bilt thanking them. One that would explain to all of you exactly why I loved working with them so much...after the contract expired and there was no incentive to continue writing about them. I wanted to be able to openly and honestly talk about how I'd long respected them like a lot of you because they were one of the first companies to ask garden bloggers for real, honest reviews of their products. But not that long after our contracts had expired, there they were again, asking our opinions on ideas about other programs they were considering for 2012. Then in a move that shocked the shit out of me, they asked us all back for a second year. Instead of indoctrinating a whole new set of garden bloggers, they were investing in the same 6 of us all over again. We talked about what worked and what didn't work and here we, back for season 2.
As a member of the Troy-Bilt Saturday 6 I'll review a few products here on my blog, give a few away, and write a couple of articles for their online newsletter, The Dirt. I am particularly looking forward to trying some of the newer products now available with rechargeable battery power. I encourage all of you to check out Troy-Bilt's new Facebook page where they are sharing good gardening info.
Troy-Bilt, one day I'll write that letter so everybody will know the real deal. In the meantime, I am honored and appreciative of the opportunity to work with you again and I'm looking forward to this new gardening season.
On my end, consider this the official disclosure that I am being compensated for honest reviews of their products. If I don't like them, I'll tell you so.