I was recently contacted by “Joe” asking if I would be interested in looking at an infographic his team had created that he thought would be useful to my audience. He also mentioned that I could use it however I want. I knew the trick, so I politely replied that I will pass for now. Joe responded back saying that he understood my position and included a bunch of stuff (and that infograhic) just in case I was curious to see them.
In a week I get a few emails that will promise me that if I post what I send, it will benefit my readers. It is very kind of them to reach out to me and I thank them for that.
I am sure many of the other bloggers also get these emails from “kind souls” that care a lot about the recipient’s readers.
Key Characteristics of Sophisticated Spammers
The characteristics of such outreach are as follows:
- They come from made up names (probably someone with a fake identity)
- They are form letters that are disguised as personal letters
- They have no clue what my readers want
- They appear to be genuine but even anyone with a bird brain will know that they are not.
- They have no interest in building a relationship. It’s all a matte of statistics. Send the same email to a thousand people and a few of them might respond.
- They won’t have any information about them that will reveal their real identity (position, organization, real email, phone etc.)
In general, these outreach people have created a piece of content (a blog post, a list, an info graphic, a chart etc.) for their client and they want free traffic from platforms that have an audience they are trying to target. In other words, they want to capture the stage for free if possible. They could pay for traffic or they could make someone send them traffic without having to pay for it. In other words, they are inviting the recipient to send traffic and they want the recipient to thank them for an opportunity to send them traffic.
Just because someone is spamming in s sophisticated fashion does not make the person less of a spammer.
A Better Way
There is obviously a better way and that requires building a long-term relationship. But then again, you can’t build a long-term relationship in the short-term. There is no shortcut possible. It takes an investment to build any kind of relationship so they deice not to bother with it. Why try to be real when you can get away pretending, right?
Photo Courtesy: Tracy Hunter on Flickr