Who ARE These People?

I was asked to take a look at two different marketing programs. One was Network Marketing and the other was an affiliate type program. One of the programs was offering a very hefty commission. Both of these programs are owned by people well known in their fields. Sounds like the "pros," eh?

We could only hope.

I went to both web sites to read the marketing material. Plenty of that! What I didn't find was any contact information - other than the names of the heads of these programs and some generic email addresses. Now - why is this a problem? If these people are so well known, why do I believe it's an issue?

Think about it a minute. Are you going to join a program - work your butt off to sell someone else's product - earn your commissions - then, not even know where your money is? Who is holding your fees? Where are they holding your fees?

If something runs amuck, how are you going to contact someone about the money that's owed to you? What if it's a lot of money? Are you going to call them? No phone number on the site! Have your attorney send them a letter? No physical address on the site! Not even in their member agreements! How legal is that?

One of the programs I mentioned above paid $225 commissions. If you sold one of these products a week, you would be owed almost a thousand dollars in a month. I repeat - where is your money?

It simply isn't good business to allow someone to hold that much money when you don't even have contact information. This would never happen off-line! Why would you put up with it online?

When you sign up for any online marketing program - remember this! Not only do you have a contract with that company. They have a contract with you! You have a right - in fact, an obligation to yourself - to know exactly who they are - exactly where they are - and exactly how to contact them by regular mail - and by telephone.

They certainly get that information from you! And, if you live in the USA, you may even have to provide your social security number. If they're a legitimate company (in the USA), they have a Tax ID number. Try asking them for it, and see what happens!

No one is such a professional that all they need to provide to their business associates is their name! No One!

Not even Oprah.

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tlcpro's picture

Gurus without Contact Info

It is amazing how inflated the egos of some are, and how willing to support those egos others are. I won't do business with anyone online who cannot provide me with a way to contact them. Recently, I published a book, and went to Google to locate bookstores to market it to. I am amazed at how many of these online retailers have affiliate programs but no way to contact them. I don't want to join their program, I want to sell them my book. It has been quite discouraging to say the least. These are retailers with brick and mortar stores and they provide no email address to use. There is no 800 number either. So, I am left to forget the whole thing, or rack up a huge long distance bill calling them to get an email address to submit copy to. They have submission guidelines, but no information on where to submit. Ass backward if you ask me.

If you want customers or affiliates, it is just plain and simple good business to allow people a way to contact you. If you don't want people calling you at all hours at home, list office hours and get an 800 number. Provide an email address, at the very least, or an online contact form of some kind.

If a business can't provide you with a way to contact them, for whatever reason, then they are probably not worth contacting in the first place.

Trina L.C. Sonnenberg
Freelance Commercial writer

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