I hate getting junk mail through my letterbox (as Vanquis Bank found out previously), I hate getting cold-called on my home or mobile number and I hate receiving spam email to my inbox. I hate all of this even more when an item or call is addressed directly to me, as this means that somehow, someone has obtained my details without having my permission to use them.
The other day, I received an email from Pippa Brown of Web Windows, which was sent to the Ninja Hedgehog PayPal email address. I’ve published this email address in an article only once or twice, so it’s not especially easy to find and is unlikely to be the first email address someone would use to contact me (this would be firstname.lastname@example.org). The email read:
I hope you don’t mind me getting in touch again, but I emailed recently about a special offer for a banner ad: One month Daily Mail banner campaign just £515
Did you get a moment to have a look?
I’m around for most of the day, so let me know if it’s of interest – I might even be able to sweeten the deal!
Just a quick email to find out whether you’d be interested in the idea of running a banner ad for Ninjahedgehog on the Daily Mail website?
Web Windows is an advertising agency who are occasionally able to pick up some amazing late-availability banners. This is one of those occasions and you can find all the details of the offer on this link: One month Daily Mail banner campaign just £515
I appreciate this offer has appeared out of the blue, so if you’d like me to explain things in more detail, I can be contacted on the number below. Or maybe you’d just like to go ahead?
I’m not entirely sure where Pippa Brown sent the first email, but it sure as hell wasn’t sent to me.
I’m not entirely sure that Pippa Brown‘s name is even Pippa and half suspect it may actually be Sarah, judging by the link to her photo on the Web Windows website (look at the image url). Pippa (or Sarah) can also be found on Web Windows‘ home page doing an excellent impression of a sealion.
Ninja Hedgehog is a small, personal blog. I have no interest or desire to advertise nationally and am quite happy with being discovered by accident or through word of mouth. Also, given that some of the content on Ninja Hedgehog contains rude words occasionally, I’m not entirely sure it’s the sort of material the Daily Mail would wish to have advertised on their website.
I’ve never contacted Web Windows and have no idea why I was contacted by them, so I thought I’d reply to ask a couple of questions:
Thank you for your email.
Firstly, you didn’t actually send a previous email to me about this fantastic advertising opportunity.
Secondly, I’m not entirely sure my site is of the variety that the Daily Mail would wish to advertise on their website, so the fact that you’ve sent this unsolicited invitation (to the Ninja Hedgehog PayPal email addresses of all addresses) is somewhat bizarre. I’d be interested in knowing how you obtained the email address which you’ve contacted me on, but I suspect you won’t know or that if you do, you probably won’t reply to divulge that information.
Thirdly, I wonder if:
A) Your agency even represent the Daily Mail and;
B) If your agency does indeed represent the Daily Mail, if the Daily Mail are aware of the way in which you essentially send spam email in an effort to tout for business.
The way in which you’ve contacted me (and I suspect many others) isn’t especially professional and if you do represent the Daily Mail, it can reflect badly on them that that an agency who claims affiliation with them does business in this manner.
Out of curiosity, I will also contact the Daily Mail and raise the above points with them directly as if you do represent them, I think they’ll be interested in the methods used to obtain business.
Please would you remove me from your spam email list.
Needless to say, I haven’t received a response. Nor have I received a response from the Daily Mail to the following email:
I’ve received the below email from an advertising company who claim some sort of affiliation with the Daily Mail.
I run a personal, online blog so advertising on the Daily Mail website wouldn’t really be beneficial to yourselves or I.
I was wondering if Web Windows are affiliated with yourselves and if so, were you aware that they send unsolicited emails to addresses found online in order to obtain business?
A quick Google Search for “Web Windows spam” returned many links to websites and forums where users had also received spam email from Web Windows . It seems that Web Windows don’t respond to enquires about how they obtained victims’ email addresses and that they don’t remove victims’ email addresses from their spam list once requested.
No professional organisation should need to tout for business by scouring the web for random email addresses and sending spam email in the hope that eventually they’ll receive a reply. Obviously, I’m not suggesting that Web Windows are unprofessional… all I’m saying is that if I was looking for a professional agency to advertise my product online without the need to send off a load of shit to various email addresses because they’re too lazy to do their jobs properly, I wouldn’t choose Web Windows.
It’s slightly ironic that an online advertising agency advertises itself in this shameless and embarrassing way. Why would anyone use Web Windows after being contacted out of the blue in this way? Would you really want your product being advertised in the same manner? Frankly, I’d be embarrassed.
Perhaps I could offer my services, seeing as I’ve dabbled in advertising before?
As it’s obviously acceptable to send unsolicited email, I’ve set up an email address which forwards emails to each of the people listed on this page, so that I can keep them all up-to-date with posts on Ninja Hedgehog.