I published a Hub on how to find or receive free rental codes from Redbox on December 28. Today, I received a notice in my e-mail that the Hub was deemed to be overly promotional. I was told that it was labeled with this because it exclusively promoted one product/site and sounded like a commercial advertisement.
I am doing my very best to provide informative articles. This one was designed to help people save money and was part of a series I was going to do on the topic. Now I'm afraid to write another.
Do I really have to "muddy" up my article by pointing out the obvious - that my readers can also shop at Blockbuster or buy Netflix? The people who did searches for my topic were looking for information about Redbox already as this term was in their searches, I'm not selling them on anything they don't already know.
I have waited several hours before writing this (and hope I'm not coming across as disgruntled) but I am still not able to figure out what exactly HubPages wants us to write. Wouldn't every book review be considered overly promotional? Wouldn't any favorable hotel review be considered overly promotional? I am having trouble telling the direction that this site wants it go in. It feels like we (the authors) are being pulled in many directions.
I do admit that there are a few things I can improve in my Hub (I put a link back to my author page at the end of the Hub- how dare we try to promote the fact that we've written more than one article in order to try to retain traffic! That can be removed easily enough). However, I'm confident I could go through the site flagging hundreds of Hubs about products or services that do not mention the competition.
I guess what I'm trying to say is... am I wrong to think that stating there are other movie rental choices is overkill? If not, is there an appeal process for HubPages where I can make my case? I am not trying to sell anyone anything (obviously- they're free movies!) so I feel I should be able to write an informative article on saving money on a particular popular product. Please help me make sense of this all. I am so confused!
This is not unusual. I think HP is on "auto program" as far as scrutinizing new hubs is concerned. I too have encountered such problems. You can try to edit to your best ability. If rejected again, my advise is not to republish without getting clearance from Admin. There may be a possibility that the "auto program" may close your account without any warning for repeated "violations".
Hi Good Guy! Thank you for your advice. I am really scratching my head, honestly. Based on what you said I am even more afraid to try again and am seriously considering taking the article to another site (it was doing really well with the search engines!). The only thing holding me back is the amount of work I put into formatting it correctly here (that makes me sound lazy, doesn't it?). I just don't understand why HubPages would want to drive articles that are doing fairly well to the competition just because I didn't mention other obvious movie rental businesses. Every person who searched and found my article had "Redbox" in the keywords and none of them were asking for information on Redbox competitors.
I also want to clarify that I do not work for Redbox, nor do I care if people rent their movies there or from any other movie place. I am simply writing about what I know about, and I happen to rent at Redbox, I like getting my rentals for free because I'm extremely frugal, and I wanted to share how I do it with the world.
Your post could have been overly promotional because you have more than two links to Redbox and/or the post was too short and looked like it wasn't fleshed out enough to be more than an advertising blurb.
Without having seen the post, that would be my guess. I've written about how to use Flickr and Twitter. My posts were fine. I had over 400 words for them I'm pretty sure. Also, images to illustrate my instructions.
I would take a look at your post and see what you could do to add more information/ instructions and images too.
There was only one link to Redbox in the Hub. It was 888 words long. I had 5 legally used images. I did ask the moderators specifically for more feedback and most of it made sense to me. The only thing I'm specifically having difficulty understanding is the comment about promoting only one product/site.
I think the trick is to write about your personal experiences with a product to kind of "flesh out" the article and make it more interesting to read. I don't write many product articles for the very reason you state...I'm never sure about what HP wants from us in that arena. Perhaps reading some product reviews from others will help you.
Hi Time Traveler! I would like to see some acceptable product reviews- any idea on how to find them? I'm afraid that if I do a search I may find reviews that haven't been "caught" yet.
I did write a personal review in my article about how convenient and easy to use the kiosks are. I also told a story about how nice the customer service was when I had to rented a disk that was scratched.
I've recently written a product review that got featured so I suppose it wasn't "overly promotional". Just write an introduction of Redbox that's completely facts then talk about your own personal experience. I suggest trying to make the 'non-review' (just facts) part of similar length to your own personal experience and praises of the product.
Hi Alarming Monkey! Thank you for the advice. I'll try to add more personal experience as my article is mostly just facts. It's kind of hard to write a lot about walking up to a machine, pushing buttons and getting a movie but I'll try to add more, ha ha!
To tell you the truth, my Redbox article was featured as well from 12/28/12-1/10/13, so unfortunately I cannot take your product review as being an acceptable one- all it takes is a random Hubber coming by and clicking the promotional flag on your article and you could possibly be in the same boat as me. I need something solid that's been reviewed by the moderators and deemed okay. I have even seen Hub of the Day articles get shut down for being overly promotional months after they were featured, so I don't know how to find a safe bet.
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