Getting flogged for a blog post

Jan 01, 2009 10:30 PM  By

Being relatively new to this blogging thing, I was excited when several people recently posted comments to one of my entries — even though most of them thought I was an idiot.

I had posted an item about a Restoration Hardware Gifts catalog I had just received. It didn’t look like one from the home decor mailer. The full-bleed glossy black cover showed a black-hatted older fellow standing next to a vintage black hotrod.

The cover text said: “The One. The Only. The legendary. Shelby Black Hornet from Carroll Shelby’s personal collection.” It meant nothing to me.

I didn’t know Carroll Shelby is a U.S. racing and automotive designer and former racing driver, and that the Black Hornet is a 1968 Shelby EXP500 CSS. Why were they on the catalog’s cover? To promote an online auction of the Hornet last month to benefit the Carroll Shelby Children’s Foundation.

It was nice of Restoration Hardware to devote its cover to the cause — not to mention the first three spreads, which sell Shelby memorabilia. But I opined that, even though it’s clearly a men’s gifts book, the merchant may have strayed a bit too far from its core audience — presumably women like me. “Seems like a risky branding move in a very tough season,” I blogged.

Some commenters agreed with me, but most took me to task for not knowing who Carroll Shelby is.

“I have to wonder about your comments about the car and the designer. How old are you — I am in my late 40s and know exactly who Shelby is. …” said one reader.

“Ask Ferrari who Carroll Shelby is,” said another.

Well, I didn’t know who Shelby is — and I only wish it’s because I’m not old enough to remember the classic Mustang I’m told he designed. The Restoration Hardware cover was a misfire to me; I stand by my post.

But I love the commenting feature on blogs — good or bad, it’s always nice to get feedback and know someone’s reading.

You can read my Restoration Hardware post and others at the Bigfatmarketingblog.com. And by all means, don’t be shy about commenting.