Product placement

Every now and then I go on a story or get sent press information for something I’m not able to turn into a story that can be published in the newspaper I work for. And it always seems like such a pity to let it go to waste. I generally explain to the person who sent me the info or invited me to the event that there’s a chance I won’t be able to use it, and they more often than not understand.

There has also been the odd occasion when I’ve been invited somewhere and haven’t been able to write about it in quite the manner I’d have liked.  Case in point – my visit to Mavericks. Most of my observations would have been frowned upon in a daily newspaper. Not quite family reading over the Coco Pops.

And sometimes (not often mind) someone sends me something in parcel form. Whether it’s a bar of chocolate or a packet of soup and I’m stuck
there looking at it going: “Well, thanks, but this isn’t really front page material.” Now we don’t receive many freebies these days – there’s a recession on and all – but there’s still the odd parcel that arrives.

Our company has also recently implemented a Freebie Code, which means that any gifts we do receive are handed in and auctioned at the end
of the year. I’ve contributed a fair amount of awesome things to that cupboards so far this year. I’ll just have to wait and see if my budget is in a good enough state come the auction to buy back one or two of them. All proceeds are donated to charity, which is nice.

But there are some things that just won’t wait until December. Take, for example the pastries I was given at an intro to a new chef at a restaurant in Kloof Street recently. I somehow think that a furry mound of green rot wouldn’t fetch much more than R3 on auction. So those I plonked down
on the coffee table in the newsroom and invited everyone to dig in. A press package I received today included the prettiest tea cup, saucer and tea pot (look out for it at the auction) and a packet of Sasko premix scones. The person in charge of the Freebie Stock said that she didn’t think the mix would last till the end of the year so I brought it home with me. Which got me thinking… these things don’t really have to go to waste. The crazy functions and odd products. I can still write about them, just over here at Uncharted Terri-tory. AND I can write about them in whatever style I choose. Perhaps I’ll revisit the Mavericks outing…

So ja, lookout for the odd post snuck in here about something work related that’s not quite work related. I promise, I won’t write about things like a new brand of sanitary towel or weedkiller… unless they… ummm, wait, no I can’t see myself ever writing seriously about sanitary towels – weed killer on the other hand…

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