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05 February 2018

Hand-Knit Sweaters For Koala Bears, Or Strange Emails People Send Us

We often get emails asking us to advertise products and services on our blog. Usually, I send a quick reply back saying "thanks, but no thanks." After all, the person sending the email is generally some peon in a cubicle making peanuts.

But recently, I was tempted to send a more detailed response. Something along the lines of:

"Thank you for your inquiry. Before we proceed with advertising your product in exchange for absolutely no compensation for our time and effort, can you clarify which of our online businesses you were referring to? Was it the one where we sell hand-knit sweaters for koala bears? Or, did you mean our mobile unicorn grooming business?"

It all came about when I received this form email (the highlighting in red is mine).



Let's just dissect this, shall we?

First of all, she says that she came across our >>post<<. Well, the link she provided takes you to >>this page<<, where we have links to various posts on blogging tips and tricks. It's not an actual post.

Next, she says that it was >>super insightful<<. Uh, okay. What exactly did she find insightful about it? It's just a page with a listing of blog posts. Did she find it insightful that I know how to insert hyperlinks? I think what was supposed to happen here is that I'd be so flattered that she called it *insightful* and put a *super* in front of it, that I would jump at the chance of doing her bidding.

Then, she mentions the importance of >>online businesses<< and talks about my >>work<< later on. That's what got me thinking maybe there is some money to be made in hand-knit sweaters for koalas or starting up a mobile unicorn grooming business.

If she had actually looked at our blog for even a nanosecond, she'd probably have figured out that we aren't selling anything.* In fact, we don't monetize our blog.** {Yep, all of this crazy, random nonsense - it's all yours for free.} Something, she'd know if she had read >>this post<< I wrote a couple of years ago about annoying form emails we get from people wanting us to flog their stuff.

Although, maybe she did read that post as she didn't offer any sort of compensation for publicizing their web hosting guide. By the way, I'm pretty sure they make their money by recommending certain web-hosting services. Our share of that profit - zero. Unless, you count the fact that they'd be >>thrilled<< if we helped out as compensation.

Which leads me to the reference to >>web-hosting<<. Yeah, we don't pay anyone to host our site. We do things the cheap and cheerful way around here by using Blogger's free service. No domain, no hosting, nothing. So, why would we be interesting in talking about web-hosting?

What kind of strange, annoying and/or stupid emails or slow mail do you get? If you have a blog, do you monetize it? Ever knit a sweater for a koala bear or brushed a unicorn's mane?

*Disclaimer: In all fairness, I've had a link up here before for the IWSG anthology I had a story published in and I'll do the same when I publish my cozy mystery. So, I guess I am selling stuff. 

**Another Disclaimer: I did try Amazon Affiliates for a while, primarily with links to books I reviewed. We made a whopping $10. We're no longer part of the program. And, by the way, there's absolutely nothing wrong with monetizing your site. If it makes you happy and it works for you, go for it!

You can find links to our other posts on blogging tips & tricks on here.
 
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20 comments:

  1. I get those, some for my site and some for the IWSG site. Usually they have nothing to do with the content either posts. Now if they were offering dragon training services, I might be interested.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah, well, that's true. I'd be willing to advertise anything to do with dragon training services for free.

      Delete
  2. It does make you scratch your head doesn't it. There is a lot of weirdness out here on the www.

    Have a fabulous day, Ellen. ♥

    ReplyDelete
  3. I came across this post while searching for a hand knit sweater for my panda bear. Since you knit sweaters for koala bears, would you be interesting in knitting a sweater for my panda bear? It needs to be blue with white, yellow, and orange stripes to match my dog's sweater. My panda's name is Bao Bao, if you are able to hand embroider it on the sweater, I would appreciate it. I have no money for this, but will give you a shout out on Facebook and then you can knit panda sweaters for all my 43 friends, none of whom own panda bears. I eagerly await your response!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You win the award for the funniest comment! Thanks so much for the laugh.

      In the meantime, I'll get working on that hand embroidery. And since you're such a good customer, I'll throw in some sequins, free of charge.

      Delete
  4. I've gotten emails that have said the exact same thing. Lately I've gotten a bunch that have asked to write guest posts about their products. I send a "thanks, no thanks" email back too, but I do like your response about koalas and unicorns much better! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The ones asking for you to write guest posts are the worst, especially when their product has nothing to do with your blog and readers. Sure, why don't I spend a couple of hours writing a post extolling the virtues of your glow in the dark cuticle trimmers for free?

      Delete
  5. The water heater post on our blog gets the most spam. It's always some yahoo who links to some stupid device that doesn't have anything to do with boats. We have taken measures so that no one needs to see them. Maybe I should reply with, "can I knit a sweater for that?"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We get lots of spam comments too, but Blogger usually does a pretty good job of filtering them out. I think a sweater reply would be ideal.

      Delete
  6. Had I known you had the unicorn business on wheels, I'd have opted for your services so much earlier. Alas, the unicorn moved out last month. I'm off to find a koala. I'll be back.

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    1. That'a a shame we missed helping you out with your unicorn, especially as we had a half-off glitter package last month.

      Delete
  7. WordPress is pretty good at filing this stuff straight into spam which I occasionally clear out along with other rather more eye-popping stuff for services I most certainly do not need. Not too bothered about koala sweaters, but unicorns now - Scotland’s national animal as you might know. You could clean up over here!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't realize WordPress had email accounts. I use a gmail account for the blog, so they come directly to me and not via Blogger.

      There are many reasons to love Scotland, one of which is its national animal :-)

      Delete
  8. How strange. I used to get a lot like this, but after a time, this has died down. Wonder why...

    ReplyDelete
  9. I get weird emails like that from time to time, too. I used to respond with a polite, "Thanks, but no thanks," but now I pretty much ignore them.

    Nope I don't monetize my blog. (Hell, I barely monetize my book! HA) I chose not to mess with the ads and such, because for one, they annoy me when I encounter them on other blogs, and also, I've received permission to use content from other websites and cartoonists, etc. on my blog, and they've tole me flat-out that they granted me that permission BECAUSE I don't support any ads.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Somehow, I just can't ignore them. I feel bad if I don't send a response back, no matter how annoying the email is.

      Delete
  10. I'll be quite honest in saying "I don't read them" I get emails all the time in spam and such that get a glance and a toss. I had no idea they were for my unicorn grooming service.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. See, if only you had known, your unicorn's mane would be in such better condition - glossy and sleek with beautiful crystal beads braided in.

      Delete

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