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E-Marketing Performance Blog

How Not to do Business with People Smarter Than You

Would you want to be part of a business network that has to lie to you to get you to join? Me neither. There is no worse way to try to gain legitimacy than to attempt to gain subscribers through illegitimate methods. I recently received an email from a company attempting to do just that. Below is a screenshot of the email I received from a business networking service similar to Linkedin.


Notice here how we started with the Final Notification. Where was the first or second notification. Just jump right into the triple dog dare!

According to them, I have not logged in for some time and my profile needs to be updated lest my account be purged from the database. Funny I don’t remember ever joining, but I’ll play along. I click the big red link and am taken to a login page. My email address is already entered in so I put in my password. Or what I assumed would be my password:


No record? How is that possible? They sent me my final notice! My email address was already entered in? Oops, if you’re going to lie about someone already having an account, perhaps its best that you don’t tell them otherwise when they get the password wrong!

So I go back to the email and realize that they have conveniently provided both my user name and my password for me. Imagine that, they sent my password to me in the same email as my user name. At least I know they are serious about the integrity of their system.

On the second try I use the password provided (one I would never have used had I created the account for myself) and get logged in. The first thing I see is this:


That about had me on the floor in hysterics. I can get #1 on Google and Yahoo just by joining FastPitch. To hell with this SEO nonsense, I’m in! You gotta love the balls on these people.

By now I’m wondering the process that came about to get me on their spam list. The original email provided me a few clues.


First, we changed our domain about two years ago. The one in the email has been redirected since around may of 2005. And look at that awesome description of my business. Sounds familiar. Yep, sure enough that was the title of a press release we submitted in April of 2005. Wow, talk about keeping their database current! Wouldn’t it have been easier to pull the meta description from the website itself?


So there you have it folks. A lesson in how not to do business with people smarter than you. But hey, it looks like a really good opportunity. I just hope I updated my profile in time!

Stoney G deGeyter

Stoney deGeyter is the author of The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist, Period!. He is the founder and CEO of Pole Position Marketing, a web presence optimization firm whose pit crew has been velocitizing websites since 1998. In his free time Stoney gets involved in community services and ministries with his “bride enjoy” and his children. Read Stoney’s full bio.

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