An article about lead generation firms in the payday loans space:
New York State’s financial regulator, Benjamin M. Lawsky, sent subpoenas last week to 16 so-called lead generator websites, which sell reams of sensitive consumer data to payday lenders, according to a copy of the confidential document reviewed by The New York Times.
via New York Subpoenas Websites in an Effort to Curb Payday Lenders – NYTimes.com.
This guy visited UberVu.com without providing any personal info or being logged into any service and a day later, he got an email from them:
Recently, I visited the landing & pricing page at UberVu.com. I did not signup for anything, did not leave my email, did not connect with any of their social media properties. One day later, I get an email (see attached image).
I’m sure they triangulated some information but how could they pin point to personally identify me? Is this common & so blatant (or even legal)?
Interesting discussion over at Hacker News that triangulates it down to two tracking services– Trackalyzer and Leadlander: Can websites personally identify visitors? | Hacker News.
I feel filthy just reading this article.
What’s the shadiest stuff you’ve seen?
Using old data bought on the open market and writing a script to fill in your forms en masse. I have seen thousands of leads come through in a matter of hours from one source. All were fraud, and none of the leads had ever opted in or had any memory of visiting the site/offer. Another classic one is emailing using a brand name and then offering a competing product.
via Confessions of a Lead-Gen Specialist | Digiday.
FTC sent warning letters to a bunch of free credit report sites, including Quinstreet and Vertrue:
The Federal Trade Commission is warning 18 Internet websites offering free credit reports that they must clearly disclose that a free report is available under federal law.
via FTC Warns Websites That Offer ‘Free’ Credit Reports: Disclose Federally Mandated Free Reports or Face Prosecution.
I just read about the Lockerz funding:
Seattle-based startup Lockerz is a new kind of social networking service—an invitation-only social commerce site where the ultimate goal is for members to earn rewards for their online interaction. Through the site, members collect points redeemable for discounts on brand name products by connecting with friends, watching videos, shopping online, and otherwise engaging in the Lockerz community
Then I googled them and got lead gen deja vu.
The site makes lots of grand promises , but it does not deliver. They are slow to credit you for points. They don’t run it like a real business. It is much more like the other internet scams that say that you will get “stuff” or money for doing tasks that anyone could do with no training. Nobody can stay in business by giving away something for nothing. Avoid them.
I don’t know anything about the company but this sure brought back some memories.
Blogger walks us through the first free Ipad offers:
So what’s the deal? I clicked through and found a little fine print about having to complete eight “offers” to receive an iPad:
There was also a lot more fine print at this address. Plus another page which seems to say that you have to have documents notarized as part of the process.
I started to click through the offers, which kept claiming to be “surveys,” although most seemed to be things like credit card offers and sweepstakes and free trials for various services, all of which wanted personal information from me (including, sometimes, my credit card info).
You don’t need to be a marketing guru to figure out that the business model behind the “free iPad” is convincing you to sign up for offers that pay a bounty (aka a referral fee) to those that send business their way.
via Oh No, the “Free iPad” Offers Are Here!.
Los Angele-based Leads360, a developer of web-based, lead management software, is powering a new feature in Google’s Adwords program, the firm said Tuesday. According to Leads360, it is working with Google to help power the new AdWords Comparison Ads feature
via Leads360 In Win With Google | socalTECH.com.
A nice overview of the Quinstreet regulatory filings over at Bronte Media. I read over the S-1 and found it rather boring, which is a good thing. These sort of documents only get fun when the filing companies are being bad.
It was interesting to read the rationale for why Quinstreet could be counter cyclical but my gut reaction is to think otherwise.
Another point also had me pondering– Quinstreet currently operates only in America. Can a lead generation company ever become global? The answer to that question could severely limit the upside for the company.
Quinstreet IPO Initial Thoughts | Bronte Media.