Greg Magnus

AIM Custom Media Websites Blogs Glen Allen, VA 23059

Month: March 2008

How to alienate your customers

Email blast after email blast with little, if any, content of value. That appears to be the email marketing strategy of business network Fast Pitch. Everyday, another email like this:

Last chance to become a Platinum Member for only $99 per year. 
Offer ends tonight at midnight (Wednesday, March 26, 2008). 

Give your profile top ranking, receive 10x more visibility, make unlimited connections, get ranked higher on search engines, post unlimited press, see who visits your profile and more… for less than $9 per month (normally $27 per month).
 
Upgrade:  http://www.[DELETED OUT OF RESPECT FOR OUR READERS TIME]

Once you click the link (above), be sure to click on the special promotion image to receive the special discount.

If you want to learn how to alienate your customers using email, just sign up at Fast Pitch – it won't take long for the onslaught of promo emails to arrive. I deleted my Fast Pitch business networking profile "fast." Maybe they should consider changing their name to, "Fast, Switch" to another online business network!

UPDATE: April 3, 2008 – More questionable tactics from Fast Pitch: 

It appears they hired people to combat negative press about them or they may be posting this b.s. themselves using one-up gmail accounts. I rec'd the following comment after publishing this post from a person claiming to be a paying customer (they didn't provide their website address or an email that shows up anywhere on the Internet BTW):

I've gotten those too.  A little annoying – sure.  But, I've got to say… of all the online business networks out there, Fast Pitch! has provided me with more valuable advice than I can remember.  After I signed up, I received 6 weeks worth of 'How To Market My Business' Advice emails from the company.  They taught me how to enhance my profile for search engine optimization, the importance of creating content, how to generate an audience for my press, blog, profile, etc…), how to make introductions to people online, and more.   In fact, I also received a Welcome Call from the company 3 days after I created my profile . . . I've always been able to reach a customer support rep through email, live chat and phone.  In fact, the CEO chatted with me the other day during what they call a virtual tradeshow – whereby hundreds of members actively networked online using webcams.  Cool stuff. I think your being a little too sensitive…

The person that submitted the comment above didn't leave a website address, I did a quick search for the "text content" of the message without the name of the company.  No surprise, the search results came up with a Blogger blog edited by the Fast Pitch owner! And, posts with the similar text and "cool stuff" claims – a mere coincidence, I doubt it. The IP address range is also from the same area, SE Florida and the owner is, where else, Florida. It appears they are paying people (or doing it themselves with fake gmail accounts) to leave positive comments about them. 

I agree with David, Fast Ditch! may be a better choice for their name. 

Finding the Right Managerial Balance

First, I want to thank Bill Boyer for contributing another business article for us all. I find his thoughts on business management of value and believe you will also. In fact, the following suggestions provided by Bill are often overlooked by growing business owners – or by business owners wondering why his or her business isn’t growing.

How Do I Find the Right Balance?

AIM Custom Media business article Managing a small company is very difficult.  J. Willard Marriott said, “Don’t do anything someone else can do for you.”  Many owners and CEO’s find this hard to do, because they know that they can do everything better than any of their employees.  When an owner thinks, “My people are not good enough to delegate to,” it really means, “I am unwilling to take a chance on my people and give them permission to fail.”  However, at some point you will run out of time.  And your company will not operate at its full potential.

There are many reasons you do not delegate, but most of them have more to do with you than with the talent of your employees.  Do you hire the best people you can?  Do you train them, either internally or using outside courses?  Do you follow up with them and give them feedback about their performance?  These issues must be addressed by you. Continue reading

Why organic SEO is a priority over PPC and other online ads

Organic search engine optimization (SEO) is considered a higher priority by most seasoned marketing pros when compared to pay-per-click (PPC) and other online ad programs, especially for branding campaigns. Here is one good reason why:

‘Heavy clickers’ distort online advertising 

The people clicking on your banner ads may not be the target audience you’re seeking, according to a new Starcom USA study. The study revealed that so-called “heavy clickers” are typically between the ages of 25 and 44, with a household income of under $40,000. They represent only 6% of the online population, but account for 50% of all display ad clicks.

Heavy clickers spend about four times more time online than non-heavy clickers….they aren’t necessarily brand loyal and often don’t even pay attention to the brand they are buying….

Source: BizReport.com, February 13, 2008 (Hat's off to the Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce for including this piece in their email newsletter, "Business Intelligence Report," March 2008)

Assuming the above is correct, there is a tremendous amount of money being spent on 6% of the online population when you consider these recent reports published by Continue reading

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