With our final sponsorship commitments ending at the end of this month, Procurement Insights will be a 100 percent sponsor free blog.
While I have always striven to provide thorough and objective coverage, for me accepting blog sponsorship dollars didn’t seem to mesh with true journalism. Or as I would write in my post it is time for procurement to come of age, any “appearance of favoritism or bias – even where none exists, is unacceptable.”
This is particularly important given the historically close ties between bloggers and the service providers they are covering. As we all know, the majority of the older blogs originated from within the provider community itself. Kudos to these “provider” blogs, as they were among the first to recognize the power of tapping into the emerging social media market.
In some ways, the first blogs are reminiscent of the shows that aired on television when that was a nascent medium.
Remember when there were only 2 or 3 channels to watch? Almost every show became a hit by virtue of a combination of both curiosity for the new medium, and limited selection.
Fast forward to today, and instead of 2 or 3 channels, there are hundreds. Instead of a handful of shows, there are an innumerable number of shows that are accessible 24/7. In short, and with an equally expanding choice for readers, blogs are faced with greater competition . . . and expectations.
This brings me back to why I made the decision to end this blog’s sponsorship program.
My readers and listeners are knowledgeable and sophisticated, and are increasingly tech savvy. In short, and in conjunction with the “commoditization” of procurement technology, you are looking for information and insights beyond a features, functions and benefits analysis. You want to know what makes a company tick. You want to know the people behind an organization – including their service capability and true client results. To do this effectively, I have to cover the industry in an entirely different way. This means that I will on occasion, have to scrutinize the companies I cover in ways that could be difficult to do, if I were dependent on their favor in terms of revenue and other incentives.
Or to put it another way, independence and objectivity go hand-in-hand. As we learned from the Theranos scandal, it is hard to have one without the other.
Now that this initial transition phase has been completed, I am ready to take this blog to a new level . . . mainstream media.
Starting with the Delaware Online News Journal’s coverage of the brewing legal battle between the State of Delaware and SciQuest, I will be expanding the scope of this blog through a collaborative coverage platform. This means that among other things, Procurement Insights will have permission to reprint articles from mainstream media publications in their entirety. It should be noted that Delaware Online is part of the USA Today Network.
It also means that where it makes sense, there will be shared research and collaboration on stories. This will provide you, my readers, with a broader news scope that includes perspectives on stories from those outside of the industry.
Over the coming month’s we will be announcing new collaborative engagements, as well as a tie-in to my radio show on Blog Talk Radio.
All-in-all, this is a an exciting time in that objective coverage of our industry that is unencumbered by financial ties and revenue dependence, is long overdue.
Furthermore, a collaborative coverage platform in which mainstream media can access resources and industry insights that may not have been previously possible, will elevate procurement’s profile to a larger and more general audience.