I correspond with a lot of people I have never met in person. They ask me all sorts of questions about training, nutrition, foods, you name it. I have developed some lasting friendships this way, and I enjoy chatting with people who have similar interests.
I think they trust me, at least several said they do. I am real. Trust is very important to me, and I trust people implicitly until they give me a reason not to.
I am writing this because there is so much out on the Internet, and we are all hungry for information, but who or what do you trust? I think it's important that you carefully review the source of your information. For instance, I typically discuss what I am doing, what works for me. I don't think I have ever come out and said that my way is the only way, of course if you ask my opinion, you are sure to get an earful because I have very strong opinions on what I believe works and does not, but it is all based on personal experience.
I do have a contract with a marketing company and have been compensated to review products, but I actually review them and am allowed to speak truthfully. I will always disclose when I am being compensated.
The other day I received an email from a woman, "Emily" and she said she had some questions for me and asked if I could take some time to answer them. I wrote back and asked what her questions were.
It turns out she works for a company that makes some very popular fitness videos. You have seen their infomercials and their ads, they have beautiful bodies with chiseled abs doing some very high energy exercises, (their system has letters and numbers in the name). They also make other fitness programs and skin care products, they must be a very successful company.
She told me that their brand was so relevant to the content of my blog, she asked if I would write a blog about their product and put a couple links to their page. All for the benefit of my viewers.
I told her that I would be interested, but I am not comfortable writing about something that I have not personally used, I won't even post a recipe that I haven't made. That really irritates me. Why would I share a recipe with you that I have never made or tasted? And How could I post something I know nothing about?
She said she completely understood, however they cannot provide free products for review.
Wait a minute. I didn't contact her- she contacted me! I don't even want her video!
I am explaining all this as a caution that you need to consider your source of information. This company is out fishing to get bloggers to promote their product, they don't care if I have used it or even like it, they just want free marketing!
So when researching a product, be sure to look for disclaimers that someone was paid, or received a free product in exchange. Listen to trusted sources, don't just believe everything you read on the Internet.
And, please note that I will never compromise my integrity or your intelligence. You can trust me.