Would You Work With a Company That is Deliberately Misleading Blog Readers?

Recently I’ve posted a couple of articles about my disappointment with LinkedIn. It’s my opinion that for most professionals it’s a complete waste of time. Actual benefits from it are few and far between, unless you’re looking for a job or you’re a headhunter.

This morning there was a pending comment here on one of those articles. It was from someone pretending to be a happy user of a similar site, Salesconx. This site lets users buy and sell leads, and supposedly you don’t pay unless the lead meets your criteria.

Here’s how they describe the service:

But why limit yourself to just your own network when you can leverage the relationships of other experienced sales professionals? We recognize that professionals spend a lot of time and effort cultivating their business relationships, which is why we created Salesconx.

Thousands of other professionals just like you are buying referrals and earning referral fees by doing something that many do ever yday – networking with likeminded professionals. With the Salesconx network of professionals spanning North America and representing dozens of industries, our members are able to easily and painlessly pinpoint that right person, without all of the fruitless costs.

And they’ve struck a deal with one of the biggest linkers at LinkedIn to “monetize” his network.  Other LinkedIn users can buy and sell leads too. It sounds like a decent concept, and I think it might even work for professionals in the right fields.

But here’s my problem with Salesconx: The person commenting here and pretending to be the happy user of SalesConX and recommending it to my other readers, was actually an employee of Salesconx.

Now some may pooh-pooh this and say, “Oh well. They’re just trying to market their service.”

I disagree. Marketing means being honest. That would look like this: “I work for Salesconx and I think our service might be a good option for some of your readers. Our benefits include…”

Instead, they’re flat-out lying by pretending to be a happy user of the site.

So if I don’t like their deceptive approach, why am I giving them air time and linking to them? To tell readers who they are so they can avoid dishonest companies. The comment here was not just a shameless plug. It was a dishonest attempt to get readers to believe the commenter was an unbiased user who just liked the site. That doesn’t fly here.

5 thoughts on “Would You Work With a Company That is Deliberately Misleading Blog Readers?”

  1. I think it’s crap, but alas “sockpuppets” seem to have become an accepted marketing channel for companies that should know better.

    The CE industry is especially rife with sockpuppet marketing efforts popping up on industry blogs and news sites.

    Some apparatchiks apparently think that because it’s called “viral marketing” it’s supposed to be toxic.

  2. From the press release,… “Salesconx.com, the online business referral marketplace today announced that Moshe Weiss, a master rainmaker and leading networker with over 16,000 direct business connections, has joined the Saleconx Partnership Program to monetize his network.”

    Doesn’t that mean that the linkedin partnershipis with Moshe Weiss a LinkedIn member, not the LinkedIn the company?

  3. You may not know about LinkedIn Lions, but these are obnoxious people who try to connect with as many people as they can –whether they know them or not — so they can spam people for sales or recruiting purposes. They are not officially affiliated with LinkedIn the company. In fact, LinkedIn clearly states on their site you should only connect with people you know! Making these folks abusers of the system.

    As for utility, my husband was in the same boat as you until recently: he didn’t get the point of LinkedIn at all. Then he uploaded his address book, and was able to connect with a scientist in France who is working on the same research he is! Now he’s on it about 30 minutes every morning, “networking” he says… I used it to contact a friend who was working at a company I thought was cool, and he told me they were hiring even though they hadn’t posted the job yet!

    LinkedIn is like any network– you get out of it what you put in. Sadly some people seem to want to poison it for the rest of us.

  4. Uggh. Yes, it’s those “lion” types that ruined it for me. I got so tired of them that I scrapped it all together.

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