Been looking online for debt settlement, debt relief or debt consolidation information lately? If you have you’ve undoubtedly come across a ton of review sites and you may have thought “Great, some help in trying to sort through all the conflicting claims out there on the net”.
Well, I hate to burst your bubble, but you should approach these sites with a grain of salt.
Why do I say that? Well, aside from my career as a banker and international consultant, I’ve been active in internet marketing for a number of years. Over this period I have observed a number of strategies used by internet marketers, some of which are questionable, to use a polite term.
One of the most used strategies is the review site and I’m going to give you a look behind the curtain.
From a marketing standpoint, the concept is the following.
1. You become an affiliate of a particular website or program and get paid for sending prospects to that site. Depending on the arrangement, you either get paid when you send a prospect or, when someone buys.
2. You set up a review site to soften people up and then send them on to the target site.
Marketing studies show that these review sites are one of the most successful marketing methods for affiliate products and, it has also been shown that there is a specific approach to the site which works best.
In a nutshell, it’s to adopt a style where the site owner;
1. is reviewing the site/product to let others benefit from his experience
2. was initially a little skeptical for whatever reason(s)
3. was ultimately convinced (after a thorough review, of course) that the site/program was great
4. Finishes by recommending the product and may provide a pro and cons list.
It’s important that the marketer establish credibility and rapport with the visitor and, one of the best strategies to achieve this and appear to be providing an unbiased review is to find and mention some negatives (because nothing is perfect). The trick though is to not scare off the visitor, so the writer must find (or only talk about) negatives that are so minor that the visitor will have a sort of “That’s not important” type of reaction and still be convinced by the recommendation.
Some have it down to a science and churn out these sites on a ton of topics without any real research, while others specialize in “top 5 or top 10” sites.
These are sites that review a number of competing products and rank them according to a convincing looking scale. What the visitor may not know is that the site owner is an affiliate of all the products reviewed and makes a commission no matter which one is chosen
There are courses on how to do this and some marketers have become so good at this system that they have an assembly line approach.
The problem reached the point where the FTC stepped in and issued guidelines on disclosure requirements, but these don’t take the place of a good dose of skepticism.
Does that mean that there are no good, credible review sites out there? No, there are some, but it has become extremely difficult to spot them.
So what’s a poor internet surfer to do? How can you avoid being taken in by such sites on something as important as Debt settlement?
More on this in the next post.
Make It a Great Day!