Regular readers will know that I'm pretty hard on enterprise vendors, especially when I believe they are wasting customers' money.
Last month for instance I dinged Oracle for wasting money on English language advertising at Madrid Barajas airport. This morning SAP gets my attention. They are sponsoring WorkFast.tv with Robert Scoble and Shel Israel. The website is plastered with SAP advertising and the videos now have SAP coffee cups in full view. I don't mind that even if it is old school and completely over the top. A show's got to make money and presenters need paying.
I watch shows for decent content, not 30 minutes of rambling. And I sure as heck don't watch a show that is supposed to be an interview with a guest but where the first two to three minutes is of one person giggling while the other talks about the show needing help with decorations but having a zero budget.
I've no idea what kind of deal SAP negotiated with FastCompany but you can be sure it runs to a good amount. In the context of SAP's whole advertising budget, it will be a fleabite. Even so, it is customers who pay as it all goes into the eventual sales price.
I'm sure that in looking at Scoble, SAP thought he is a brand that might attract a new kind of customer. He has certainly been able to attract high profile interviewees. But if your hard won brand is associated with poor quality content then what does that say about your company? In my mind it says low rent. The antithesis of what SAP says it stands for. As someone who has benefited from SAP's open door policy towards bloggers and its generosity in facilitating travel, I find this embarrassing. I'm not alone. The first four comments condemn the Tim Ferris episode.
Content producers will always want to retain their independence but if I was in the advertising driving seat - as SAP most certainly is - then I'd want something far better than this. As a customer, I don't want my license and maintenance fees wasted in this manner.