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The epidemic of instagram “influencers”, and how to avoid wasting your marketing budget on fake promises.

If you’ve been active on instagram in the past year, you must have noticed this kind of behavior. People start following you without knowing you really or at least know what you are doing. So, you do the polite thing, and you follow them back. Maybe they drop an introductory “hello” message, and propose to “follow a buddy of them with an equally amazing account”. And then, a few days (or hours) later they unfollow you by using automated programs or bots, hoping you will not notice and keep following them. All they are trying to do is build a big enough following to be considered as “influencers” on instagram. Apparently this is the new “cool” job in the social media world. And it doesn’t matter that most of these profiles and “followings” are completely fake. Bought, or created the way we described just above.

It all started with celebrities posting their shopping habits, their favorite bars and restaurants, and whatever makes them happy. Soon, companies realized they could monetize this attention. Each one of these celebrities has millions of followers. So the money started pouring in. It didn’t take long for others to follow. Social media brought democracy to the “attention game”. Beautiful men and women, chefs with a twist, world travellers, people all around the world realized the potential of an amazing life and income and started addressing themselves as influencers. But then the whole idea went out of control. Thousands of people started building fake followings; paying to buy them, or doing this follow-unfollow game.

Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of legitimate and high-value influencers on all social digital platforms. People who are paid a lot of money to appear to venue openings or promote products and services. There are also a lot of micro influencers who although they don’t hold the attention of millions, have very loyal and engaging followers. Both of these two categories could provide a business –your business- with valuable exposure if used correctly. Unfortunately, they are not the majority. The majority are the legions of “fakefluencers” flocking in and out of your social accounts like locusts.

These “fakefluencers” are what we described at the beginning of this article. People who can’t deliver, because their “influence” is fake. Customers won’t visit your dealership, they won’t buy your product or service, and you won’t get featured on “prominent mainstream media outlets” after you pay them with your hard earned dollars. Or euros… Or bitcoins… There are a lot of excuses they will offer, and you will create a lot more to justify the failed campaign you just paid for.

–        The economy (really?).

–        The weather.

–        The product.

But by now, you know the why. You didn’t buy influence, you bought smoke and mirrors.

They usually create their followings by either doing the “cheap thing” (following-unfollowing), or by paying for their inflated numbers. Exchanging likes, follows and comments, or just plain vanilla buying them. Whatever the case, their fake tribe will bring no value to your business.

Thousands of brands are spending a lot of money on digital and social media. And influencer marketing, hyped and praised everywhere and by everyone “that matters” are getting an increasingly bigger “piece” of the ad pie.

More specifically, instagram influencers are projected to have a combined value of more than 2 billion dollars in 2019 (twice of what it was in 2017) according to Buzzoka – a firm specializing in influence marketing-.

Brands like Adidas, the Ritz-Carlton, and Unilever are getting increasingly dependent on influence marketing. But lately, firms are catching up on this fake following pandemic that plagues the business side of social media. For example, Keith Weed (Unilever’s CMO) recently addressed the problem and announced that the company will no longer work with those influencers that are caught buying followers.

So, how do you spot them? Well, if you’re a big company with resources, a few failed or underperforming campaigns will do the trick. But big brands have the budgets to survive this. And since there are too many people looking to live the life of influence luxury and free mojitos at the beach hotel, they will inevitably start targeting medium and small-sized companies. Companies with limited budgets and no room for many mistakes. So, how can you spot a fake influencer knocking on your door and asking $5,000 to appear at your next function? Here are some ideas:

1)   Compare their followers to likes ratio. It’s strange for someone having a million followers to get just a couple of red hearts on their posts.

2)  Compare their likes to comments ratio. It is equally strange for someone to get 4,500 likes on their posts on average,but only a couple of comments.

3)   Finally, if everything else looks fine, ask them for referrals. Have they done it for another business? Which one? Contact them and ask them how it went for them. If they refuse to provide such information, maybe think again to pay them for their services.

Of course you can never be sure. Someone with enough money or good tech skills can still “game” the system and appear as something bigger than they are. Not for long, but they can. But as long as you keep your eyes open and read the signs, it will be difficult to be tricked into paying for a bad service.

Influencers and especially micro influencers are an amazing strategic option for your business and its reach, provided you use the right ones for the right reasons. And the right ones are not always the most expensive ones. A lot of times many micro influencers deliver much better results than a single big one.

As long as their reach is real.

Leo Varnavas

Security Token Offerings (STO). What you need to know. Next “big thing” in crypto, or simply the next logical step?

At first, it was the IPO. The Initial Coin Offering.

Now, it’s all about the STO. The Security Token Offering. The new shiny thing in the cryptoverse. Many call it “the next big thing”. In reality, it’s just what was supposed to happen, anyway. Let me explain.

In 2009, the first cryptocurrency (Bitcoin) performed its initial transaction. After that, other cryptocurrencies followed.

The initial purpose of Bitcoin, was pretty straightforward. Enable access to financial services, to the unbanked. To those, who because of circumstance or because they were simply born in the “wrong” country, didn’t enjoy the services and facilities a lot of us do.

Financial services. Without the need of a third party to act as a middleman. Without trust being an issue. Anonymously.

The utopia of decentralization.

But then, things got a bit more complicated. New technologies started exploding. Blockchains, Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality… Resources like computing power, storage, data collection and manipulation became affordable. So many projects, and not enough funding. Teams all around the world started looking for a solution to their funding problems. And then, someone had an idea!

“Why don’t we use code to create and sell a token. Those who buy our tokens, are going to get a piece of the profits we realize from our project”.

That was it. The birth of the ICO. Teams creating tokens, selling them without even having a prototype ready (most of the times), and promising a piece of the project’s revenues.

The ICO market then boomed! Billions of dollars exchanged hands (and still do) every year with the hope of buying a piece of the next “big thing”. A lot of projects failed. A few succeeded. And some were just scams.

Finally, governments and authorities decided it was time to intervene.

Money were made. Profits were promised. This sounds a bit more than just a simple token, doesn’t it?

The SEC said, “This sounds like a security!”. The ICO teams replied, “No, these are just tokens!”.

The difference between a simple “utility” token and a security one, is quite significant. That’s because when a token is classified as a security, it has to adhere to very strict compliance, legal, and financial regulations imposed by local, state, and federal authorities.

Suddenly, crypto companies were forced to return the money they gathered back to their investors. Others, saw their owners being convicted and/or face jail time.

It was time to separate token introduction into ICOs and STOs. To separate tokens into “utility” and “security” ones. (By the way, we’re mainly talking about the US market, because this is where the majority of ICOs take place, as you can see in the below chart; courtesy of inwara.com).

You see, there are lots of different token “flavors”.

There are tokens that grant you rights. By holding them, you can -for example- have the right to vote inside the particular cryptocurrency’s ecosystem.

There are tokens that allow buyers and sellers to exchange value. Get rewards for example, for completing specific tasks (like the rewards of an online game).

They can be used as toll payments. To pay a toll for example, in order to access better resources inside a project.

Tokens can be used to add functionality or extra features to the project. For example, pay with tokens in order to remove all advertisements from a blockchain-based web browser.

They can be (of course) used as a currency. A store of value that allows transactions inside and outside the project’s ecosystem.

Finally, they can be used as a means of earnings distribution of the project’s profits or as other financial benefits.

Too many uses to be ignored. So, the SEC decided to use the Howie test, to determine which projects should be classified as securities.

The Howie Test is a test (duh!) created by the US Supreme Court in 1946. The test determines whether a transaction is an investment contract, or not. If it is, then it is subject to the securities’ registration requirements.

To make things simple, if a transaction is (a) an investment of money, (b) the investment is in a common enterprise (more than one people participate), and, (c) there is an expectation of profit from the work of the promoters, or a third party, then it is classified as a security and it must meet all regulatory requirements.

And there were additional reasons that forced this compliance. For example, companies obliged to follow KYC (Know-Your-Customer) and AML (Anti-money Laundering) regulations, wouldn’t “allow” new competitors to enter without (eventually) forcing them to adhere to the market rules. If you want to operate in an advanced economy, you need to follow the rules. Other companies also had to protect themselves against possible ramifications. Like Visa for example, that banned a lot of projects and cancelled transactions involving crypto purchases in the past months. A lot of cryptoexchanges, crypto debit cards, and other crypto projects employ the services of Visa to deposit and withdraw funds. But, if you don’t know where the money is coming from, how can you be sure you will avoid possible money laundering charges? Better be safe than sorry.

So, token offerings were divided into 2 broad categories.

Utility and Security.

Hence the term STO; Security Token Offering. A security is any instrument (paper or digital) that proves you own rights to a debt or to the earnings of the entity that issued it. A token in our case is a digital representation of an asset. So in essence, a Security Token performs the exact same functions a traditional security issuance does. The difference is that it performs these functions by using blockchain transactions. Other than that, equity rights, dividend payouts, voting, they all remain the same.

The compliance and extra security features we find in security tokens, is the result of using multiple smart contracts. Unlike simple tokens where a single smart contract is enough for their creation, security tokens use multiple. In addition to the initial contract that manifests them, they use contracts that determine how they can be purchased, sold, traded, and whatever other feature is required by their use. (A smart contract by the way is a simple program –some code in essence- that executes as soon as a specific condition requires it to run).

Being the products of a blockchain of course, security tokens share all of the benefits of a blochain-based product. Immutable, transparent, and traceable transactions that make it very hard for Madoff wannabees to delete transaction records.

And there are even more perks for using a blockchain-based security token.

Let’s say for example that you want to buy into a commercial real estate opportunity. You only have a couple of thousand of dollars, and you want to put a little bit more next Christmas with your bonus. How can you do it in the traditional way? You can’t. You can’t buy 4 square feet this month and an extra three next Christmas. Ridiculous, right? Well, you can if the owners issue security tokens. They can issue a billion shares, and price them a cent a piece if they want to. So anybody can invest whatever amount they can afford.

The process can be used with other types of investments. An expensive diamond. Gold. Or a Van Gogh painting. You put your money, and you buy a percentage of the total securities issued.

Of course, the same idea works in the opposite direction, too. Let’s say you own a building and you need $20,000. You don’t have the time (or the credit score) to seek bank or any other sort of a loan. You can tokenize a percentage of your building, and sell the securities to the public.

Asset tokenization is an amazing tool, because it is very versatile. Unfortunately there are still issues that do not allow it to become a mainstream practice. For example, when you buy tokens of the building in our first example, you buy ownership of the asset. The security. You do not become a legal owner of the property. Blockchains are public, immune ledgers, and your transactions cannot be altered. You still have your rights intact. You enjoy your profits from the rise in the tokens’ value, and the profits from the building’s revenues. But that’s as far as your reach goes.

Let’s say now the owner of the building decides to sell it. You just own tokens, not the building. You have no rights over the property itself. You can see the problem, right? Smells like an expensive legal battle.

Then we have companies and their stocks. We can tokenize them and sell them, but not everywhere. A lot of countries do not allow the sale of fractional parts of company shares. It’s illegal. End of story.

So, security tokens are a very new, much more secure and versatile investment vehicle. They solve a lot of security, compliance, and trust problems that simple tokens and ICOs carry with them.

But, they have a long road ahead of them until they become mainstream alternatives. Countries have to adjust their laws. City, State, and Government bodies have to update their regulations in order to allow them to be defined, and operate legally.

Until then, we can only try to build better, more secure tokens. The good news is that the industry (and technology in general) moves so fast, that the governments have to work faster to keep up. Nobody wants to leave consumers exposed to bad products, incomplete services, and to the practice of fraudulent and money-laundering activities. It’s bad for us, and it’s bad for their re-election chances. So, let’s wait and see what happens!

Veggie Cuts

“Nice one, Polly… Really-really nice…”

The banged up van was driving fast down Sunrise Highway, on its way to Freeport High. Polly was nervous. Sitting in this deathtrap with 7 more people on a Sunday night, she started questioning her choices.

For the last 23 years, cows, pigs, and poultry were born infected with the “C4L1” virus. Nobody knew its origins, but it was there, and it was incurable.

Four years ago, a small company called “Veggie Cuts” offered a solution. Vegetarian products that tasted like meat, and were virus-free.

“C4L1” or “CALI” as people started calling it wasn’t deadly. At least that was the official story. Everybody knew it would eventually kill you (one way or another), but there was no definite correlation. And that was the alibi meat companies needed. Meat was cheap. So people ate it. And public school cafeterias with small budgets had no choice.

Then, 2 years ago, a group of college students calling themselves “The Nine”, decided to take action. They started protesting, boycotting, and suing meat companies.

It didn’t work. Nobody cared.

So, they started promoting “Veggie Cuts” products (burgers, “chick”-fillets, sausages) to make people realize it’s time to stop killing themselves. People still didn’t listen. It was time for more extreme measures.

They picked 3 High Schools (one in LA, one in Colorado, and one in New York). They would load 3 trucks with products, and put them inside the cafeteria freezers. Each truck would be accompanied by a van full of volunteers to carry out the mission. And Polly found herself into one of these vans.

She told the group she was in for the cause. And yes, she did care about food quality. Who wouldn’t? But the real reason was her shyness. Polly was never good with people. Her parent’s divorce and moving around the country because of her mother’s job (a VR experience designer) didn’t help much. So when “The Nine” invited her to join, she said “Yes!

And then there was Nick, the group’s leader, and her crush for him. Maybe if she stayed close, he would finally notice her.

“Stupid, stupid Polly…What are you doing? …”

She was nervously tapping the floor with her foot, when the van reduced speed and turned right into Brookside Avenue. She looked outside the window and saw the school’s baseball field. They had arrived. The van passed in front of the main building and then turned right again into the school parking space. Nick opened the van’s side door:

“OK everybody, let’s do this.”

Everybody got out. The place was empty. The smell of spilled beer and fast food garbage was quite strong.

Game night…Right…” Polly thought.

She could see the football stadium in the distance.

The white truck carrying the “Veggie Cuts” pulled in, and parked next to them.

Nick’s cellphone buzzed.

“What? Crap… OK, thanks for telling me.”

“What’s the matter?” Polly asked.

“The other two groups failed. The cops got them.”

Everybody turned around and looked at him, worried.

“How did they find out, man?” Paul, the truck driver asked Nick.

“I don’t know guys, and we don’t have much time. Let’s go!”

Paul opened the truck’s doors, and pulled out 4 big trolley carts.

OK guys, start loading”.

The whole group started loading the carts. It took them about 2 minutes to finish. Then a guy everybody called “JJ”, started walking towards the back of the building:

This way people …

Are you sure you know where we are going?” Nick asked.

Please man. Freeport Alumni here, class of 2079!

The group followed him quickly across the parking lot, to the back entrance. Nick picked the locks, and they went inside.

JJ took the lead.

Follow me.

Five minutes later, after passing a few walls with dented lockers, handmade posters for school events, a trophy case, and some dark and empty classrooms, they entered the cafeteria.

OK everybody, you know what to do”.

The rest of the group started emptying the meat products from the freezers, and replacing them with “Veggie Cuts”. Nick gave Polly some stickers.

Stick them to the front of the buffet line, so that the students know they are eating Veggie Cuts today.

But, won’t the staff notice the difference?”

“The boxes are unbranded, Polly. They won’t know what they are serving. They just don’t care.”

“Cool!”

Ten minutes later, the job was done. Everything was in place, and all the meat boxes were loaded on the trolleys ready to be disposed.

Time to go, people.

Everybody smiled. As they started walking to the exit, Nick turned to Polly:

Good job Polly. How do you feel?

That…was…awesome!!” Polly replied loudly.

Everybody laughed.

But, as they took the last turn towards the exit, they saw red and blue lights blinking in the distance.

You are surrounded” a voice yelled.

Put your hands up, and walk out slowly

Everybody froze.

This is your last warning. Come out with your hands up”.

Damn it, how did they find us?” Nick asked himself.

Do what they say, people. Live to fight another day.”

As they walked out of the building, they saw 4 police cars and a police van parked. Officers were pointing their guns at them.

On your knees. Hands behind your heads”.

Everybody complied.

How did you find us?” Nick asked.

Next time you decide to use a stolen truck, remove the tracking pods, genius”, a sergeant replied.

Seven hours later, the group was escorted to the court to face punishment. As they were waiting outside the court room, Polly looked at a newspaper left on the chair next to her. The title read:

Freeport High students demand the ban of all meat products after Veggie Cuts makes it into their school cafeteria.” “NO MORE CANCER IN OUR FOOD!”

“Oh man, my mom is going to kill me.”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Story Type: Flash fiction

Length: <1000 words

Based on this article: https://thehustle.co/missouri-law-meat-alternatives/

 

The delusion of perfection

You are doing well.

Making good money, just got promoted, and you are bringing in new clients every day. Your colleagues love you. Your bosses wish they had more like you. Your parents are very proud of you. And your romantic life is at its peak.

Those around you, start using you as an example. More and more people feel the pressure to deliver results. They just keep looking for ways to get an advantage. That’s how life works today. Deliver, or disappear. So, if you’re doing well, you must have a sound strategy in place. You are someone with a clear vision. A great motivator. A person with excellent orientation, and culturally educated. You must be, right?

Here’s the problem, though. People usually look in the wrong places for those golden nuggets that will give them an edge. They usually turn to books, coaches and lessons that promise to show them the road to El Dorado. Literally devouring books and content that promise a clear blueprint for success. From ordinary, to hero. From competing, to dominating.

Truth be told, all these tools look credible. They base their claims on data. And they have a lot of facts and figures in them. But many of these studies are flawed. They are usually based on questionable results that will eventually lead you to false conclusions. What’s even worse, a lot of times they lead you into believing that in order to be successful in life, all you have to do is follow some “simple steps”. Just think of how many books you have read or saw lying on a bookstore shelf, with that title.

When people claim that you can succeed by following specific steps, they hide (or are ignorant of) a very basic truth. In the real world, your success is most of the times the result of decisions you make under conditions of uncertainty. Moreover, the same success is partly shaped by factors out of your control. Finally, in the real world, good choices don’t always lead to success. Think about it. From your own experience, wouldn’t you say these three statements are true? Maybe it’s time to dig a little deeper than that “5 Steps to Awesomeness” book. What do you say?

Many conclusions we arrive at, are undermined by a phenomenon called “The Halo Effect”. The term was introduced in 1920 by an American psychologist called Edward Thorndike. In simple words, the Halo effect states that people tend to make specific inferences based on general impressions.

So, when something bad happens; when you lose your job or you separate from your partner, people usually think it’s because you made a mistake (or mistakes). “You are to blame”. It’s because you got lazy. Rude. You neglected your responsibilities. You forgot your cultural references. Where you came from.

In reality, you haven’t changed a bit. You work, interact, and behave the same way you did a month ago. But your success creates a “Halo” around you that shapes the way people see and judge your victories and your losses.

Smart people –the ones you really want to keep close to you-  will look deeper. For them, your success doesn’t necessarily mean that you are a visionary, or have excellent social skills. They know success doesn’t last forever, and nobody can be a top performer all of the time.

Your performance is a relative concept. You can be always on time, cut your costs, make more money than last year, and be a very caring and thoughtful partner to your better half. That doesn’t mean that you will succeed. Your success or your failure also depends on the actions of your rivals or competitors. Someone might work longer hours than you. Care more than you. Invest more than you. It’s as simple as that.

It’s the delusion of perfection.

And it doesn’t exist.

Then, there’s the delusion of forever. This one builds upon the perfection fallacy, and makes things even worse. It is the idea that if you keep doing what you did in the past, you will never fail. The theory usually uses examples of people that are successful for decades “because they kept the same job”, or “stayed married with the same person”. I can almost see you smile right now. We’ve all heard those stories, right?

Here’s the thing, though; in life, (just like in nature) perfection and lasting success are a statistical anomaly. A delusion. People work backwards to justify these claims. They look for real-life examples to support their arguments and not the other way around. But that doesn’t make the argument right. It makes it cheap. In fact, if we take those people and look at their lives as a whole, we will easily discover periods of huge success, followed by periods of less success, and a couple of failures somewhere in between.

And it’s ok! We are not perfect. You are not perfect.

The delusion of forever is a serious problem because it makes people think that being perfect all of the time is an achievable goal. The few that have achieved success for long periods of time, did not do it by unlocking the secrets of the universe. They did it by winning consecutive small victories. So win the small battles, and stop dreaming of the forever perfection. It’s not there.

You might think it would be nice to find that formula. A plug-in that guarantees success. But if you think of it, not having that formula is not a disappointment. It is actually a relief. Because if we had such a tool, there would be no need for evolution. You wouldn’t need to do the unexpected, that one thing that would surprise the people around you. You would just need to press the right buttons, check the right boxes, and you would be done. Every time. Now, would you call this a life worth living? I think not.

So, recognize that life is messy and uncertain. I know you like things to make sense. Your brain prefers that. To have instructions and rules that explain your actions and their consequences. But in reality, your choices are an exercise in making decisions under uncertainty. Will those around you accept, or reject your choices? And even if they do accept them, will they pick you and your version from the ones of past and present friends or foes?

Then, look at your life and your decisions through probabilities, not steps. Improve the odds.

Look at what’s going on around you. Observe what are the people you admire or compete with, being doing. Then evaluate your situation, and make the best possible decision. Once you realize you can’t be absolutely perfect, life becomes so much better.

Finally, separate the inputs from the outputs. Good things don’t necessarily come from good decisions, and vice versa. For example, the fact that you failed in your relationship, doesn’t mean you “picked” the wrong partner. You should instead examine the whole decision process that led you to that final choice. This is the sort of thinking that requires an extra step from us. To judge our actions and decisions based on their merits and not just judge ourselves and others by making “after the fact” comments; good or bad. Smart people fight this natural urge we have to pass judgment based purely on outcomes.

I know this is how the world usually works around us.

I also know it’s wrong.

Maybe we can start fixing things. For ourselves, at first. Because if we can’t adjust our thinking, we can’t make our lives better.

Be safe, everybody!

Who wants to live Forever? Apparently enough to fund a $200bn. Industry.

Freddie wasn’t the first one to wander, when he sung “Who wants to live Forever”. The topic fascinated us for thousands of years.

Our efforts to develop anti-aging compounds increased during the last decades. All of them failed. Recent #medical breakthroughs though, have helped us explain better why we age, and increase our average life expectancy. As a result, we experience a massive influx of capital and research into the #anti-aging market (now worth 200 billion dollars according to a Citi Report).

Today, research teams concentrate on hereditary and other cell factors. One of the most promising routes is a group of drugs that attack “senescent cells.” These are the cells to blame for a series of aging, as well as degenerating conditions like #Alzheimer’s. Studies suggest that by eliminating these cells, we can increase our lifespan by up to 35%!

The first company to offer a treatment is Unity (NASDAQ: UBX). They are testing a compound called #senolytics with patients suffering from osteoarthritis. If this #drug gets approved, it will disrupt both big and small brands promoting products for this condition. Add to this the knee-replacement surgery market (3million surgeries/year by 2030) and you can see how big the impact of new technologies will be in the next decade.

#Technology is also a major disruptor of jobs and their future. Hundreds of millions of jobs will be lost in the next decade because of technology and #automation. At the same time, millions of new jobs will be created. #Healthcare related jobs will be at the top of that list. McKinsey predicts that by 2030, “there will be at least 300 million more people aged 65 years and older than there were in 2014″. As lifespan increases, people change their spending habits, and this will lead to a whole new demand for medical and healthcare related professionals. Doctors, nurses, personal care aides, the list is big and it will continue to grow as new demands are created. McKinsey estimates that healthcare related jobs will increase up to 85 million new jobs by 2030.

Technology will make a lot of professions obsolete in the next decade. It’s a good idea to start thinking about alternatives in order to survive this shift. Especially for young people planning their studies, this process is even more important. As more traditional professions (like lawyers, accountants, real estate agents) will start to suffer the consequences of the new AI world, it’s good to have options. Healthcare and medical research is one of those. Especially when institutions like the NYU make their Medical schools tuition free!

Off to listen to some Queen now.. Have a great day, everybody.

Silly Copy Thursday

I know I know, you have to be professional and all… but sometimes…

A guy who knows a friend of mine, calls in today. First call of the day…

He says he wants to “send some emails. 15,000 of them.” (swear that’s what he said).

I say, “I don’t spam people, I can create a cold email sequence for you if you want”.

-“Isn’t this the same thing?” he asks.

-“Isn’t cold emailing, spam?”

-“No buddy.. Cold emails are not spam. Spam emails are spam”, I reply.

(By the way, you know how this is going to end, when you call a prospect “buddy” and he’s OK with it…).

-“So, what do you want exactly?”, I ask foolishly..

-“I want you to send 15,000 emails.”

-“OK. Anything else?” (this is getting funny..)

-“Yes. You must send the emails to the customers’ inbox not in spam.”

-“Oh, these are your customers. OK then.”.

-“No, man. Not my customers. I paid a kid to get me those emails from facebook”

And he continues. With a warning.. 🙂

-“15k emails as a trial for now. If you can hit the inbox we will repeat the project.

If you can’t hit the inbox please don’t waste our time.”

OK, now I really have to ask…

-“What’s inside this message buddy?”

-“A real estate money opportunity.”

-“I see… Do you have a verified company email account and a verified website to send these emails?”

-“No, we don’t want to send them with our site’s credentials. My internet guy told me it could hurt our site’s reputation (U-N-B-E-L-I-E-V-A-B-L-E!!)”

-“So your copy is so bad, that it will hurt your site’s rep. But you want to send it from another site, because for some magical reason it will then land inside your prospect’s inbox. That’s what you are saying, right?”

-“Huh?”

-“Sorry buddy, I can’t help you with that. Good luck with your campaign.”

(And that was another Thursday in the life of a copywriter..)

Be safe everybody,

Leo.