Online contributors comment on the important issues of the day…
Tour De France 2012 - Stage 19 (Individual Time Trial) - Highlights ITV4
'The thing is,' Walsh said, 'the public are no mugs. Nobody really buys the British thing, not even Chris. And it's such a shame - a missed opportunity. If he's only come to the Tour with a Kenyan racing licence, as the first African to win, then what a story! Then we'd have something we could truly embrace - a story we could all get behind.'
From The Indivisible Man, by Ned Boulting, 2013
Funny pictures of cats, the mass dissemination of pornography and the instant connection of billions of people around the world aside, the great contribution of the internet to humankind is undoubtably the customer review. Whilst previously the opinions of the proverbial man on the Clapham omnibus counted for absolutely nothing, the internet now endows everyone with a platform to have their gripes published and presented to the world. Many websites even tell you 'Your opinion is important' - dangerous words if ever there were any.
The customer review has transformed retail - seen as more reliable than an expert, because our man on the Clapham omnibus doesn’t have an agenda (i.e. isn’t being paid to write this review - though there are clearly obvious pitfalls in making such an assumption).
Taken at face value, it seems like the perfect marketing exercise: ‘don’t just take our word for how great this product is - listen to all of these happy customers!’ But in reality, the fault (and entertainment value) at the heart of all customer reviews, is obvious: it’s always too personal. It’s too easy to confuse the objective and the subjective. To bring this closer to home, an amusing example:
"the only down side is it comes up small & I think you need to go up a size , I’m usually a XXL but do with a XXXL in the body ."
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but I think if you’re usually an XXL in cycling kit (which is nearly always specifically designed to be close fitting and aerodynamic) - it’s not the kit coming up too small, it’s you coming up too big… Sorry. Sometimes the truth can hurt, please don’t take it personally.
Cyclist Magazine, March 2014, page 3. Pinarello Dogma 65.1 THINK 2 ‘simply: the best bike in the world’
Cyclist Magazine, March 2014, page 16. CANYON ‘THE BEST BIKE IN THE WORLD: 2011, 2012, AND 2013. THE AEROAD CF.