Monday, September 27, 2010

A Musing for Monday Morning on Flim-Flam

Ah, my dears you have to careful. I've been looking over the Tweetstream and there are flim-flam sharks in the water looking for chum that has money. I don't want that to be you. Particularly those of you looking to use web video to monitize your business.

God I hate that phrase! There are legitimate places that talk about using web video to support businesses. There are twice the number of flim-flam con people who want to sell you outdated information in a book or CD.

Web literacy can be transferred to Twitter and beyond. Even if you have limited experience you can employ certain skills to help you stay away from the stinkers. Here is a quick break down:

  • Who are they? Is there a name or company attached to the site or blog. So many of the flim-flam sites make it really hard to know who you are dealing with; that is on purpose.
  • What do they want you to do? If is is to buy a product do they spend more time telling you why you should be instead of showing the product?
  • Is it time based? By that I mean that this is a "limited" offer or you have to do it right now because time is ticking and you'll miss it if you think?
  • How much will it cost? That should be upfront somewhere on the page or quickly accessible. If you have to go through more than two pages to find out the cost, dump it. And do the numbers; if the cost over a year is more than you can stand don't do it. $9.95 a month adds up.
  • Will they let you leave the site? I had one SOB site try to keep me from leaving with another window and audio imploring me not to go.
As far as Twitter is concerned don't click the first thing you see. Take a moment to scroll through a search and see how often a site is mentioned. If it is the same person, think about it. If it is multiple people, really think about it - it could be sales affiliates pumping the stream to boost sales.

Look at the wording. Is it the same? Look at the URL. Is it the same?

It is not easy to figure out who is legit and who isn't but there is a pattern. There is a difference between folks recommending Chris Anderson's TED video vs. the folks pumping a "easy web video book for $69.95."

Yikes. Gotta Go.
More Later.

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