It's been a while, so shall we enjoy some of the emails the PR and marketing crowd have been sending me recently?
Let's start with a fairly standard request from Sam. As usual I've bleeped out the key information to prevent inadvertent publicity.
I'm Sam from <takeaway website>, and I'm just getting in touch to invite you to the launch of our <takeaway packaging> exhibition on the 6th November, run in conjunction with New York <takeaway food> expert and collector <name of collector>. It'll be a night of free beer, <takeaway food> and great <takeaway packaging> designs. I've included your invite and a press release in case you want some more information - hope you can make it!
How boring does a Thursday evening have to be before you'd go and look at <takeaway packaging> in return for free beer?
Then there was this email, with a rookie error after the first word.
We are <Two People> from a new online publication called <guide named after the Two People> and we have a growing onsite content programme which we are trying to feed with different writers and commissioned projects. Whether you blog about lifestyle, jewellery, fashion, relationships, food or anything else, if you are looking for more writing opportunities, we would be very interested in talking to you.
I reviewed my back catalogue of jewellery and fashion posts, and then told <Two People> where to go.
Here's a novel spin on blog marketing which involves a request to change something I wrote six years ago.
My name is Sharon and I am a research coordinator with The International Union of <something scientific>. I am in the process of gathering research on the long term effects earthquakes have on local economies, sociological costs and analysis of government action / programs organized as a response to earthquakes. As a part of my search I came across a resource that no longer works on your website. If you open this page and try this reference it doesn't go anywhere. If you decide to update your site, I was wondering if you would be open to including a resource that I helped create covering the 2008 Lincolnshire Earthquake. You can find the resource here.
Somewhat unexpectedly, Sharon's "resource" is a link to a website that sells fish oil. At the top of the page is a toll-free number to dial for supplies, and then underneath is a long list of data about 10 years of large global earthquakes. It's not a bad list either, but if Sharon thinks I'm going to fall for the old fish-oil-sales-link trick, she is very much mistaken.
Meanwhile David suddenly has a problem with something I wrote in 2006.
At <Well Known High Street Sex Shop> we have recently been reviewing the links coming into our domain. As a precaution, to make sure we stay within Googles guidelines, we have taken it upon ourselves to remove any we are unsure about. This isn’t a reflection of your site, simply a safeguard we are taking. The link in question lives here and points to our site. It would be greatly appreciated if we could remove the hyperlink in exchange for our eternal gratitude.
You'd think a sex shop would be glad of deep linkage, but in this case it seems they're not happy to be tied down. Sorry David, I know it's hard, but I'm not tweaking my old post for anyone.
This email arrived yesterday morning from someone who hasn't noticed I never promote things.
Dear Diamond Geezer,
My name is Rhiannon and I work for a company called <finance company>. I have followed your blog posts for a while now since I moved to London and love your writing style. I noticed that you do a lot on subjects like transport and because <finance company> are looking to work with the top voices who are talking to Londoners I think that your blog posts would be the perfect platform for spreading some awareness of Londoners can get the best deal on their commute! We already work with a number of affiliates such as <London-based website>, <London-based newspaper> and <London-based magazine>, and would like to be reaching out to your type of readership.
I'm sure you would, Rhiannon, but I suspect they're already tired of reading about you in <London-based website>, <London-based newspaper> and <London-based magazine>.
And this one arrived yesterday afternoon.
Dear <dg> We have held a conversation with your landlord who is now keen to secure a revised rent. The market price for this apartment is now in excess of <£200 a month more than you're currently paying>, but he would happily accept <£160 a month more> per month from you. Please email me back your confirmation on this and we can arrange the necessary paperwork.
Ah, sorry, that's not marketing related, that's some other issue I'm currently dealing with. But whatever the financial incentive, let me reassure you that there will be no marketing material on this blog, and that emails suggesting a mutually beneficial promotional relationship will be turned away.
I get fewer PR approaches than I used to, but each is one too many, so if you wouldn't mind holding back, your silence would be appreciated.