The Absolutely Wrong Way to Market Yourself

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A few days ago, I got a couple of invites to a new social networking site, Quechup, from a friend of mine. While ordinarily I would’ve signed up for the site (just to see what the fuss was about and perhaps to write about it), this time I found my friend online and asked him if it was worth joining.
As it turns out, not only is the site not worth joining, but the marketing team at Quechup is just as bad as some of our Nigerian friends. In fact, the two emails that I received from my friends weren’t from him at all, rather were sent out by the social networking site without permission. The site asks you if you want to see if any of your friends are already on your site, and when you link it to your address book, it spams all your friends with invites from you.
While the invites read “You received this because [friend name] (friend email address) knows and agreed to invite you. You will only receive one invite from (friend email address). Quechup will not spam or sell your email address…” the action is taken without your knowledge, your friends do receive multiple invites, and Quechup does spam you.
It is common for social networking sites to have the option to check and add any friends that are already on the service and invite friends if they’re not already signed up. This option makes sense because if you like the service enough you’re going to want your friends on it too. In Quechup’s case, however, it seems that the know how bad their product is and have decided the best way to get attention was to spam all email addresses they could get hold of. While this move may have gotten them some users, it has also gotten them enormous amounts of bad publicity.
Verdict: Stay as far away from Quechup as you can and delete any invitations you get from the service. Also, don’t be mad at your friends, they’re just victims of their curiosity.

Cameron Olthuis

Cameron Olthuis

Cameron Olthuis

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  • DJ

    Sounds like the apps on Facebook.

  • Markus

    I realized that is a common technique in new social sites. Once you have registered in, they ask you for your gmail/hotmail password to load your contact list, obiously it is a trick to send spam to everyone in your contact list. I do not suffer this personally, but friends of mine have commented me this sitation and I have recived many emails with strange invitations.
    Other thing that happends in this sites is, once you are in, they have several false users that contact you and send you some kind of compliment to assure that you keep the interest in the website. They usually are users with a cute portrait saying that you are fantastic, beautiful, etc. even you are Cuasimodo himself.

  • Yury, logo designer

    I had a bunch of invite e-mails this autumn from people whom I could never suspect to invite me to such network.
    So, now the mystery is solved.
    I wonder did they thought about consequences and community reaction to this dirty trick?

  • goofblogger

    Wow, talk about reverse marketing by dishing out fake friends to people to entice them.