As reported by VentureBeat, HP announced an almost unbelievable blogger campaign, in which they boosted PC sales 10% by giving away just 31 PCs to key bloggers:
HP, one of the country’s biggest computer companies, is boasting that it boosted its PC sales by 10 percent in May after it leveraged the blogging community to promote the launch of one of its computer systems.
All HP did was give away 31 new HDX Dragon computer systems to 31 influential members of the PC blogging community, so that the blogs could give them away in a competition among their readers. The bloggers went nuts. They made videos of the systems, wrote up engaging posts and cross-linked to each other — all of their own accord. The publicity this created spurred an increase in sales, according to Ballantyne. Since the bloggers were credible to their readers, and they were talking about the HP systems on their sites, the readers went out and bought systems even if they didn’t win one in the competitions.
[D]uring the blogger competitions, sales of the Dragon system shot up by 85 percent compared to the average monthly sales of the three months before hand. More impressively, overall HP PC sales grew 10 percent higher in the U.S. than the company had forecast, as HP PC systems overall got more publicity from the Dragon campaign. Visits to HP.com increased by 15 percent.