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Is the publicity you are making for your services considered spam?
Thread poster: Williamson

Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:59
Flemish to English
+ ...
Jan 31, 2003

Nowadays decision-makers in companies get lots of spam. I have about a thousand addresses of corporations and people in charge of a department, which might order a translation.

If I sent a mailing in the form of letters, the letters will be thrown away.

If I sent an e-mail, the spam killer might automatically kill the e-mail.

How would others on Proz tackle this dilemma?



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Karin Adamczyk  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 09:59
Member
French to English
Pick up the phone Jan 31, 2003

Quote:


If I sent an e-mail, the spam killer might automatically kill the e-mail.





Even more serious than that, they may use spam killing software (like me) and report you to your ISP. That can result in your account being closed.



Since you already have all the information you need, the best place to start is on the phone.



HTH,

Karin Adamczyk

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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 15:59
English to German
+ ...
A few basic rules Jan 31, 2003

I am on the receiving end of such messages myself - here are a few \"do\'s and don\'ts\":



Don\'t use a mailing address that will be filtered out by spam filters (info@..., mail@..., etc.).



Use a subject line that is short and concise.



The biggest problem with promotional messages concerns attachments:



- Don\'t send large attachments (although many corporate users have direct web access or at least DSL, receiving an ad with a 1MB attachment is a pain because it inflates the size of Outlook files, for example.



- Don\'t send .doc files - for security reasons (macro viruses and worms!), I tend to delete them untouched; send a PDF attachment instead.


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Gayle Wallimann  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:59
Member (2001)
French to English
+ ...
I agree with Karin Jan 31, 2003

I agree that the only choices you have are snail mail, with the chance that the letter will be thrown away, or pick up the phone. I definitely would not send e-mails to all those names. Or, you could also just go knocking on their doors...!



Good luck!

Gayle

[ This Message was edited by:on2003-01-31 11:09]


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Csaba Ban  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 15:59
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
send them out in small batches Jan 31, 2003

Take your time and send separate messages to each potential customer. You can insert the same text to the body of your message with a simple Ctrl+V.

It is a good idea to send only a limited number of such messages each time: try with 10-15 a day, then wait the responses.



Think about it: if you use a mass mailer software to send out 2000 messages within a couple of minutes and just 5% of those would actually reply, you would have a 100 agencies to reply to immediately: you cannot handle that volume anyway.


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Karin Adamczyk  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 09:59
Member
French to English
Very dangerous Jan 31, 2003

Quote:


On 2003-01-31 11:31, Ban Csaba wrote:

It is a good idea to send only a limited number of such messages each time: try with 10-15 a day, then wait the responses.





What if only one of those you reach considers your message to be spam and reports you?



More and more people are using anti-spam software because the situation is so completely out of control. Many use white lists so that all messages from people other than those they have already approved are rejected and possible reported *automatically*.



Remember that spam does not have to be bulk mail -- it is simply any e-mail message that is unsolicited.



It is always the recipient that determines whether a message is spam, not the sender.



Be careful,

Karin

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Oleg Prots  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 16:59
Member (2003)
English to Ukrainian
+ ...
Do you consider each message from an unknown recipient to be spam? Jan 31, 2003

Quote:


On 2003-01-31 12:04, kadamczyk wrote:

More and more people are using anti-spam software because the situation is so completely out of control. Many use white lists so that all messages from people other than those they have already approved are rejected and possible reported *automatically*.



Remember that spam does not have to be bulk mail -- it is simply any e-mail message that is unsolicited.



It is always the recipient that determines whether a message is spam, not the sender.





Supposing you receive a message via ProZ.com: someone is offering you to participate in a good project. You have not requested this message from this person, and there\'s no chance that s/he is on your \'white list\'. Is this message spam?



I would rather agree with Ralf Lemster:

you might try sending messages to these people, but use caution and common sense.

I send such messages to agencies from time to time (when I have nothing better to do) and I only send a brief note with no attachments, stating my language pairs and asking politely whether they would like to receive my resume.



And one more thing: before sending a message, I always try to check whether they have an application form at their site.

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Marijke Singer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:59
Dutch to English
+ ...
Spam or not spam Jan 31, 2003

I agree with Ralf too. If you are a company, you should just have to bite the bullet and accept a number of unsolicited messages. If you are a private person, it is another matter.



How are companies out there to know that you exist and can provide excellent services, if you aren\'t allowed to write to them in what is today\'s best way: e-mail?



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Sven Petersson  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 15:59
English to Swedish
+ ...
Companies don’t make business – people do Jan 31, 2003

In the real world you don’t sell a translation service, you sell yourself.



Spamming (yes, what you are talking about is spamming!) is not only an inefficient and unethical way of marketing your services; but it’s often counterproductive. If your email, against all odds, does reach the decision maker he/she will most probably find it irritating and get a negative attitude towards you.



The most cost efficient way to get customers is to create an informative ProZ page AND answer KudoZ-questions until you have earned a top KudoZ position in your language combination(s).



The 2nd most cost efficient way is the get on the phone, identify the decision maker, tell him/her what services you can offer (in one or two sentences ONLY) and ask if you may send further information.



Best of luck!



Sven.



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Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:59
Flemish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Just gathering information. Jan 31, 2003

May I point out that at the moment, I am just gathering information about the best way to approach people in companies, who might be potential customers? I did not send any mail yet. So how can I be sending spam?

-

Phoning several times to the same targeted group, might be a solution to the dilemma.



Unless, you engage in team-work, it is not possible to earn top marks at Kudoz, translate voluminous projects, go to “cercles polyglottes”,attend a few programming courses and have a family-life. So, I prefer to participate in this \"game\" when I have time for it.





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Marijke Singer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:59
Dutch to English
+ ...
Well put ManuPro Jan 31, 2003

Don\'t get disheartened.



I \'spam\' too with very positive results! As long as what you are offering is of a high quality and you are not making life difficult for the recipient, I think that sending a \'mailing letter\' to potential customers is a good solution. Before the age of e-mail, we used to, after all, send open applications to big companies in the hope that they would offer us a job. This is the same, in my view.


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Karin Adamczyk  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 09:59
Member
French to English
I don't use a white list Jan 31, 2003

[quote]

On 2003-01-31 12:38, Olegas wrote:

Quote:


On 2003-01-31 12:04, kadamczyk wrote:

More and more people are using anti-spam software because the situation is so completely out of control. Many use white lists so that all messages from people other than those they have already approved are rejected and possible reported *automatically*.



Supposing you receive a message via ProZ.com: someone is offering you to participate in a good project. You have not requested this message from this person, and there\'s no chance that s/he is on your \'white list\'. Is this message spam?





I don\'t use a white list, but some people do. Others use black lists and include all messages from yahoo or hotmail accounts.



All I\'m saying is that it can be dangerous to send out an e-mail message to offer your services because anti-spam programs are being used by more people all the time. Some people are so fed up with spam that they do use automatic settings. I personally don\'t and review all messages identified as spam before I report offenders.



How long does it take to pick up the phone, touch base and ask if they would like to receive the information? Doing so will probably bring better results.



Take care,

Karin

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Karin Adamczyk  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 09:59
Member
French to English
You asked for the best method Jan 31, 2003

Quote:


On 2003-01-31 14:50, ManuPro wrote:

May I point out that at the moment, I am just gathering information about the best way to approach people in companies, who might be potential customers? I did not send any mail yet. So how can I be sending spam?





I didn\'t say that you are sending spam. You asked what would be the best method for contacting these people (including e-mail). I answered because many people don\'t realize that others may consider what they send as spam.



Someone else said that businesses should expect to receive a certain number of unsolicited messages. That is natural, but since I added a link to my site that people can use to send me their resumes, not a single one of the resumes I received was for the language combination I need, despite the note I included about this right below the link.



Agencies don\'t necessarily handle all language combinations or subjects so it is important to do a bit of leg work before you send your information. I\'m sure this is why so many offers of services are trashed and it is annoying to read through a message, open a resume and discover that this person doesn\'t offer the languages I need. I am looking for people because I usually have too much work to handle myself -- the time I have spent on irrelevant resumes so far has me seriously thinking that I should remove that link.



A quick phone call to the contact will tell you whether or not they need your services.



Take care,

Karin Adamczyk



P.S. As a business, but mostly because I am involved in the community, I do expect some spam, but some days, I have over 400 spam messages (and I mean true spam of the *increase your xxx size*). This is way over the top and why I use anti-spam software ... and I\'m not alone.

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Marijke Singer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:59
Dutch to English
+ ...
Background information Feb 1, 2003

Karin wrote:

Agencies don\'t necessarily handle all language combinations or subjects so it is important to do a bit of leg work before you send your information.



This is a valid point too.



When preparing a letter you should always check that the recipient is interested in what you have to offer. You should do some background work (either visiting web sites or using the phone). I, like Karin, also receive messages in language combinations which I do not offer. I used to reply and say that it was pointless. I don\'t anymore (but I do not get 400 a day).


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