A little torn on ELearnSecurity's latest marketing campaign

yoba222yoba222 Member Posts: 1,237 ■■■■■■■■□□
So recently ELearnSecurity began a marketing campaign in which a lucky person could win a free course if they post a good review on social media, or something like that. I haven't made a review.

The thing is, I respect their training and certification because it has genuine quality. I'd likely write a great review (if I haven't already from last year when I took the eJPT). Yet here I am considering unfollowing them on a certain social media site because of this rather shallow and annoying marketing scheme. If this were a product on Amazon or a seller on eBay, for example, I'd abandon purchasing from them because I'd know their rating was due to fake shill reviewers.

I guess in the bigger picture if they somehow grow and exceed in size and replace EC Council that would be a win for everybody so perhaps its better to silently groan and wait until the campaign ends.

A+, Network+, CCNA, LFCS,
Security+, eJPT, CySA+, PenTest+,
Cisco CyberOps, GCIH, VHL,
In progress: OSCP


  • MooseboostMooseboost Member Posts: 778 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I don't really see a problem with it. It isn't an uncommon marketing tactic.They are still growing and while their training is fantastic, they are still relatively unknown when compared to someone like Offensive Security. I think this style of marketing is great - it gets the community talking about it and may even encourage some people who are on the fence about being active in the community to make that step. I've seen new junior blogs pop up and I hope those people go on and continue to be active.

    Unlike those eBay and Amazon sellers - most of the people doing the reviews for eLearnSecurity have already purchased a course and are performing a review on a product they paid out of pocket for. Most of the online retailers who are doing the product reviews were provided the product for free on a basis that they leave a positive review. ELS is just offering those who have already purchased a chance to win something if they do a review. The rules do not state that the review has to be positive either. Think of all the people who rave about ELS training but they have never posted a formal review of it. This is encouraging people to write about it.
  • p@r0tuXusp@r0tuXus Member Posts: 532 ■■■■□□□□□□
    As you said, they have genuine quality to their training. The more people that advertise their services, the more money they can make and the better the chances they can grow their business into something with more clout and recognition - which makes your certification more valuable. On the plus side: campaign is about over, so you won't likely see many of these troubling adverts. On the other hand, if it was successful you might see more like them. I can appreciate their strategy to leverage "word-of-mouth" advertisements in exchange for so little expenditure on their part... I didn't participate only because I have only used the bare-bones eJPT course. Not that I wouldn't qualify, but I don't think it'd be a fair contribution with any added value.
    Completed: ITIL-F, A+, S+, CCENT, CCNA R|S
    In Progress: Linux+/LPIC-1, Python, Bash
    Upcoming: eJPT, C|EH, CSA+, CCNA-Sec, PA-ACE
  • PC509PC509 Member Posts: 804 ■■■■■■□□□□
    I think it comes down to "Write a glowing review, and get entered in the contest". I'd love a true, honest review that shows the horrible along with the great. I've heard good things, and the not so good things. I just feel the contest part of it will make review writers write a more positive review (I have no proof of this, as I've only read a few reviews during this campaign).

    Although, the not so good things aren't really "bad". They are just limitations of the course, but expected in an entry level and just different than the OSCP. More hand holding, for example. Just know the limitations and what it's really good for.
  • adrenaline19adrenaline19 Member Posts: 251
    My undergrad degree is in PR with a minor in Marketing.
    When I was studying, this type of tactic was considered the new great thing for increasing exposure. (that and native advertising)

    I'm not surprised to see eLearn using it to increase market penetration and brand recognition. Here is the real question; would you read the reviews any differently if you didn't know about the promotion going on right now?

    My suggestion is, always remain skeptical of anything you read, and thoroughly question any content.

    As far as eLearnSecurity, I think they are being honest and open about everything that is going on. They aren't hiring dudes to create fake accounts and post fake reviews to make themselves look better. They also allowed older reviews that were written before the campaign started. They seem to be more honest and transparent than the majority of companies I buy from in my everyday life.

    If you click on the link to the reviews, you'll see honest ones and some shill ones. I'm pretty sure they know which ones were written just for free stuff and which ones came from the heart. If you look at it the same way, I'm sure you'll find reoccurring themes and relevant content from every review. (even the shill ones)
  • JensBadaJensBada Member Posts: 14 ■□□□□□□□□□
    PC509 wrote: »
    "Write a glowing review, and get entered in the contest".
    - this is absolutely NOT what we are looking for. We want some REAL feedback, the good, the bad and the ugly. This is a way for us to improve our courses and make the next ones even better. For sure the winners of this wont be the students that say "Oh i loved it very much" without any technical explanation or details about the actual course. We are not just NOT afraid of getting to know the "negatives" - we are looking for it to get better. And we feel a good way is to get some conversation going about the reviews, with comments from other students instead of us just reading it in an email. We even offer a way to enter the contest without writing any review.
    Oh yes, I do work for eLS in case that was not yet clear ;)
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