I receive emails from PR agencies and companies on a daily basis requesting that I review their product or service. Since transparency is so important in journalism, this is a brief list of my terms and conditions for those seeking a review. Please note that sending a product for review constitutes your agreement to the terms and conditions listed below. Be advised that these terms and conditions do not supersede the terms and conditions related to reviews and disclosure of the publications I write for, nor the law. This policy is subject to change without notice.
Pitches, Story Ideas & Response to Queries
There are two ways to pitch me on reviewing your product or service. The first is a relevant response to a press query. I regularly post queries which are disseminated to various PR firms and organizations around the world. These queries are sent out via PR Newswire and HARO. If you are responding to a query and believe your product or service fits the story, please contact me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The second way is to pitch me. I only accept cold pitches and story ideas via the contact form on my website. Please note that unsolicited pitches or story ideas are not accepted via email, telephone or fax.
While it’s very humbling that so many are interested in having me review their goods or services, I often read these requests with a benevolent smile. Many of these so-called “luxury products” are absolutely not what I am about – neither my style nor the quality I look for in a product. Therefore, it’s very important that you only pitch me on reviewing products you truly believe fit my niche. My readers are primarily high net worth gentlemen that are interested in classic clothing, elegance, culture and all the finer things in life, with a strategic focus on high-quality, rare and unique goods and services. They are not influenced by the popularity of a brand or the price, but rather by the quality of the product or service. In other words, the product must be relevant to the topics and beats I write about. Sending irrelevant pitches will affect your ability to pitch in the future and multiple irrelevant pitches will result in being blacklisted. When I receive products for review that aren’t relevant, it only results in that product not being written about, or worse, receiving a negative review. No one wants that.
Demographics & Reach
Readership demographics are largely influenced and dependant on the outlet the article appears in and whether the article is published in print, online or both. The following demographics are approximate in nature.
My readers are primarily Caucasian males between the ages of 26 and 55. They are primarily home owners with property values that exceed $1,000,000 USD. They are well educated, holding a master’s degree or higher. Most read my articles from their desk or during their commute as well as in the evening or weekend mornings. Most are self-employed or senior level decision makers earning more than $150,000 a year. Approximately 40% are married or in a common-law relationship. Around 30% have children. Their interests include cooking, reading, cultural activities, tennis, golf, polo, cricket, other equestrian sports, sailing, world travel and tech. Most travel regularly, at least ten or more times per year.
United States: 45%
Rest of World: 7%
Social Media Following (as of 09-16-14)
Currently, I receive an average of 100 pitches and review requests per day.
United States: 80%
Rest of World: 5%
Spirits / Cigars: 60%
My goal is simple. I strive to present useful, objective information about luxury products that my readers might have an interest in.
The Review Process
All goods and services that fit my niche are thoroughly tested and examined before I make any commitment to cover them or review them in an article. As you may have noticed in my previous articles, I never praise a product or brand universally, but rather I look at the individual details such as quality, workmanship, service, order process, etc., and point out everything I experienced: the good, the bad, and the ugly. In short, everything I experience will be published if I decide to review your product.
What I Look For
• Defined as a high degree of value, lifespan, or excellence relative to similar products and services.
• Products are created with the highest quality of material available from heritage makers, using classic and durable construction techniques for longevity.
• Product should be created and intended for long-term use; Not intended to be disposable, replaceable or only used for the short-term.
• Products and services should be designed with classic style principles at the core.
• Long-term value trumps short term gain.
• Simple, elegant, and enduring; Products should be useable in 5, 10, and even 30 years time.
• Not subject to trends, fast fashion or viral influences.
• Uses the highest quality of natural materials.
• Emphasizes fit & style.
For the purposes of photography as well as quality control, all products sent for review must be identical to the product sold in stores. This means that any product sent for review consideration must be the exact same as if I were to purchase it. The product must be full sized and not a small sample. In addition, it must be shipped in the same packaging that customers receive it in.
Interestingly, it is not unusual to read articles that praise themselves for disclosing that they received a product for free. However, in the United States, where most of my articles are published, every journalist is required by law to disclose whether they received any form of compensation – including gifts – for a review.
Abiding by the law is everyone’s responsibility, and every respectable publication should do that by default. No one should praise themselves for NOT breaking the law.
Nevertheless, I wanted to reaffirm that I fully disclose in every review whether I was provided with the product by the company or not. Also, I never accept any form of compensation for a review.
Terms and Conditions
By sending your product for review, you acknowledge and agree that:
- The item will not be returned for any reason whatsoever. The only exception to this is high-value aircraft, motorcars, watercraft or real estate. All other goods become the sole and exclusive property of J.A. Shapira – Freelance Journalist upon receipt.
- Sending an item for review consideration does not guarantee coverage.
- If your product is chosen to be reviewed, there is no guarantee that it will be a positive review.
- When sending a product for review, the sender agrees to accept any and all charges including, but not limited to shipping, import duties and other taxes and/or tariffs. Packages that arrive with charges owing will be returned to the sender or paid for on the condition the sender is willing to reimburse all expenses. In the event a reimbursement is required, an invoice will be sent to the sender electronically in U.S. dollars. We accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, and PayPal. Interac e-Transfers are also available for Canadian companies. We do not accept corporate checks or wire transfers for reimbursement costs.
- Articles and reviews are not disclosed prior to publication. The only person who has the ability to read it prior to print is my editor. You will not be entitled to read the review before it goes to print.
- No feedback or updates will be provided on any products sent for consideration.
- You will not be notified if and when coverage is provided for your product or service. Please sign up for any newsletters or social updates with the various magazines I write for.
- There is no guarantee where or when your product will be covered if it is chosen for recommendation or review. I reserve the right to determine which publication and article the item is best suited for. In addition, items may be covered more than once and/or in various publications and articles. Furthermore, it is not unusual for a product to be tested for significant periods of time to ensure the quality of the item.
- If the item is reviewed or coverage is provided, I reserve the right to amend, modify, delete or retract the coverage, in whole or in part, at any time, and at my sole and exclusive discretion without notice or approval.
- No free access or complimentary copies of the review will be provided. If there is a cost for the magazine it appears in or to access it online, that is the responsibility of those interested in reading it.
- All images and videos associated with the review that have not been provided by you, your agents or assigns remain the copyright of the respective photographer or magazine it appears in. You may not use the images and/or video for any commercial purpose without express written permission of the copyright holder.
Please note that I will never give up my editorial objectivity as my readers are my number one responsibility.
By sending any products for review consideration, you confirm that you have read, understand and agree to the terms and conditions outlined herein.
Please send your product for review consideration to:
Mr. J.A. Shapira – Freelance Journalist
202-1239 Manahan Ave.
Canada R3T 5S8
Please note that although I am based in Canada, any coverage received will likely be in US-based magazines. Please provide a tracking number if possible.
*Please note that due to the United Kingdom’s Bribery Act, I cannot receive complimentary or gifted products for review that are intended to appear in a U.K. owned and operated publication. Please contact me directly for further information.