Alert: The New Marketing Scam to Avoid
So the other day I was minding my own business, and I missed a call from someone. Yeah, par for the course sometimes as a working mom. Anyway, whenever a number I don’t know (especially one that’s not local to me) calls, I let it go to voicemail and pick it up later.
Later came, and I had a moment so I checked it. Someone in Florida was looking for an artist, and was referred to me! YAY!
I always get excited with calls that have to do with my art. Yes, I’m a business person, and I’m really great at my “day job”, but when my art comes calling in a way that sounds like it could pad my bank account a little, I get giddy. I’d make art anyway, but you get my point.
So here I am, all excited, and I call the guy back. He’d given a direct line, so it wasn’t anything out of the ordinary except that he’s in Florida, but that didn’t really mean much.
I got his voicemail, left a message, and he called back in like 10 minutes.
So he tells me that he’s looking for an artist, specifically one who paints murals. I told him that I do have experience in that, and I was eager to hear more. I didn’t tell him this, but an average exterior wall to a business can net me around $20k, so it’s super exciting!
He says that he works for a company that produces a golf digest to the golfing community in West Palm Beach.
He tells me that the editors are looking for artists.
He says that they have three different options.
“Okay… please go on,” I say.
He tells me that the quarter page ad is…
Are you kidding me?
Somehow I let him get through his whole pitch. I think I was just shocked. I finally told him that I wasn’t a fan of his approach, and I’ve spent my entire marketing budget already, so sorry.
I hate salespeople. I mean, I’m a salesperson, so are you, all of us are to some extent. But I really hate people who lie to get you to listen to them, and then hit you with some kind of bullypoo whammy where they try to get your money.
A similar thing happened to E with his computer repair business. It was within a week of putting his site online, and he gets this call with a guy who’s all, “I did some research and found you! I don’t want to sell the spot to [your competition], so can you let me know by Friday?”
Someone read some stinkin’ sales book or something ridiculous and it was just so annoying.
My point is this: Don’t BE this kind of person, and don’t FALL for this kind of bullypoo.
Some ways to deal with the issue:
- Only respond to inquiries that come through a form on your website.
- If you are going to advertise, do your research and make sure it’s a good fit for you.
- Don’t ever ask for more information unless you seriously think it’s a good fit for you. That gives them permission to hound you. (I know, you don’t see it that way, but they do.)
- Have someone you trust (and probably pay) to deal with all your marketing and ad buys.
- DO spend most (or plan to spend most) of your ad budget in the beginning of the year.
- DO make sure you have an advertising budget, by the way.
Have you ever received one of these calls? What happened?