Stop Being Scammed by So-Called Marketers: A Comprehensive Guide

Jun 10, 2024 |

This article will help you avoid scams of any kind see the bottom of the post for best practices to avoid scammers, hopefully, this will help you.

Don't get scammed by the Scammer the introduction

In this day and age, it amazes me how people can even think to steal from anyone, and they put so much effort into deception, it is in effect a job, and the people involved moral compass is non-existent.

Avoiding scams of any kind is getting harder and harder, as they become more sophisticated in their approaches, no longer is it the elderly that are targeted but every age group, and they make a fortune doing it.

According to the DNS Research Federation Internet Scams alone in the UK make 6.8 million

"Nationally, 11% of UK adults – 5.8 million people nationwide - admitted they had fallen for an Internet scam and had money stolen. This equates to £6.8 Billion stolen from personal accounts. Thinking about what this sum means, this would be enough money to build 10 Olympic stadiums, it is seven times more than the required budget to end homelessness in the UK and it would pay for every person in Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, Newcastle, Sheffield and Leeds to have solar panels fitted (9.8 million people).
Data source: "

UK Finance report

"Over £1.2 billion stolen through fraud in 2022, with nearly 80 per cent of APP fraud cases starting online.
45 Million is lost to mobile online fraud in 2023 alone!
Data source: "

These are staggering numbers, I am sure you agree, but wait follow our advice and you will be able to prevent it from happening to you, 

Be wary of unsolicited emails claiming to be an authority on a subject, but in reality, they try scaremongering or pretending to be experts.

Understanding the why as there are different levels of scammers is also an important factor, some are desperate for work and try to do a good job but are sadly lacking the expertise, and others are ruthless seeking every penny you have, with no morals and a heart as black as the pit of hell.

Realize why they do this

There are many degrees of morally wrong scamming and fraudulent behaviour, and understanding the key reasons is not as simple as they want your money it is more shades of grey than that.

It could be someone who is ok at what they do but just cannot get any work, they are desperate but do not understand the field well enough to make any kind of guarantee, of course, they will not tell you this, they are just lying to you, but intend to work just not as well as you would have perceived.

Key reasons why you might they might approach you:

  • They have no proven skillset they are not an expert and have no authority, they are desperate for work
  • They think it is socially acceptable to call you or email you they have no understanding of business etiquette
  • They are ruthless and just are looking to take your money and as much as possible
  • They are working for an organisation that forces them to do these things
  • They are desperate and in poverty and this seems the only way to make any kind of living
  • Don't want to work would rather steal it quicker and easier

As you can see there are shades of grey, the most ruthless and well-set up crime organisations are just that mafia or organised crime rings, that are highly strategic.

With Opportunity comes deception

scammer and fraud prevention

It is true to say online sales are booming, and on the whole, most follow moral codes and obey common practices for marketing, any kind of online work can offer massive growth and reach a worldwide audience, but in the same breath the Scammers see and take hold of anything good and sour it, it's always been human nature to be envious and greedy.

In my own experience, I have heard people say these kinds of words "He has so much and I have so little" not understanding the hard work and many years that it has taken you to get to where you are today!

Scamming and deceit come in many forms, for instance how many times have you heard stories like, a relative seeing a grandma for the first time in decades only to get her to change her will just before she died, trust me I have not only heard it but seen this first hand more than once!

It's all very Shocking and it should be, but it's not all doom and gloom we can be vigilant and with these tips, you will avoid scams hopefully forever!

Recognizing Common Scam Tactics

Stop Being Scammed by So-Called Marketers: A Comprehensive Guide

To protect ourselves we first need to recognise the warning signs and the red flags, this way we are armed and ready to beat off the lying money-grabbing thieves in our midsts.

Let's look at some of the common ones, remember it could be a combination of these so be wary.

Unsolicited Emails

Scammers will often use unsolicited emails (phishing), to make first contact, it's impersonal and quick to send out thousands of emails they only need one bite that's enough!

Watch out for these:

  • Exaggerated Claims: Promises of instant top rankings on Google.
  • Urgency: Creating a false sense of urgency to make you act quickly
  • Vague Offers: Offers that lack specific details about the services provided.
  • Prize: Something too good to be true
  • Scare you: Usually, you owe money or they have personal information they will expolit

Reviews and Testimonials

It is common and a favourable trick for scammers to have fake reviews and testimonials they are easy to set up and give a sense of authority to their claim.

Check the following:

  • Unverified Reviews: Reviews that can't be independently verified.
  • Overly Positive Testimonials: Too-good-to-be-true feedback without any negatives.

No Clear Track Record

Scammers and cheats have no track record remember most and changing scams all the time, sure signs are:

  • No Case Studies: Inability to provide case studies or examples of past work.
  • Anonymous Clients: Clients who remain anonymous or can't be contacted.

High Pressure or the Hard Sell

Scammers will always pressure you, they will force you to make a hasty decision they don't want you checking up on them otherwise the scam is over, they are nervous at this stage and will tell you anything to make the Scam happen, this is often their weakness.

Watch out for:

  • Limited Time Offers: Offers that expire soon to push you into a quick decision.
  • Aggressive Follow-Ups: Persistent follow-ups trying to get you to commit.
  • Pushy and forward: THey will promise you the world and tempt you.

Unreal Promises to be good to be true!

You know the saying if it sounds too good to be true usually it's not true!

The scammers will make the offer irresistible, and if you don't bite they will offer more.

Watch out for this warning sign and be on guard always.

Key things to watch out for:

  • Guaranteed Results: Guarantees of specific outcomes like top Google rankings.
  • An upgrade: The amazing upgrade or addon
  • Magic Formulas: Claims of secret formulas or proprietary methods.
  • The gift: You have won a gift pay for postage and packing! heard this before?

Protecting yourself from the Scammers

Let's now look at what you should do, this information should cover you for most scams out there, please follow our guidelines below this list.

Key points to avoid being scammed by email:

  • Do you know this person?
  • Is the grammar and spelling correct?
  • Does the email address tie up with the company?
  • Have they included an attachment?
  • Is it asking you to act now?
  • Is it a round-robin email?
  • What does your gut tell you?

Points to being scammed by Phone:

  • Are they claiming to be a company you deal with or a so-called partner?
  • Are they asking for personal data?
  • Are they offering you a special offer?
  • Do you feel pressured?
  • Are they foreign?
  • What does your instinct tell you?

What to do on every email or call to prevent scammer fraud!

Now the most important part of this article is what to do on every call and email, follow this advice and you will prevent the risk of being scammed by these criminals.

What you should do every time you are called by Phone

Never trust the person on the phone ever.

Scammers will immediately try to build trust with you, they will ask how you're doing and might even talk about the weather something to break the ice, be wary from the onset!

If they are selling something Immediately say "I don't require this and you are contacting me without my consent I believe you are a scammer" and hangup (by saying you know they are scammers they may well delete you from their database)

If it is a company you deal with like a bank or utility company

This is the way to handle it, generally, you will go through a security process that requires you to confirm your identity, if they ask for letters from your passcode give them the wrong ones and see if they say yes correct!, if they say this then you know they are scammers, if they say not correct then you can assume they may be the actual company, but still be wary, they should never ask if they are phoning you so be aware of this, never feel afraid to hangup!.

  • Do they ask you for information?
    If they ask you for information of any kind they are scammers, especially personal information, do not take the risk of giving anything to them.
  • They ask for codes or PINs or account details
    Do not give them any codes or account numbers if its legitimate they will never ask you for personal info or secret codes ever, they will give a reason they need them DO NOT GIVE IT TO THEM ask them for a reference number and say you will call them directly, do not use any numbers they give you and do not phone them back on the same phone, lots of scammers stay on the line, so when you dial the correct number they are still there waiting!
  • If they say they are a partner of a company you use
    Hangup and say you are not interested and believe they are scammers
  • Legitimate companies
    If the company you call is legitimate they will understand completely if you don't trust them if they like you are being wary they will or should allow you to call them personally
  • Numbers given on the phone
    Always go online or find the actual company telephone number you can ask any legitimate company that you were contacted by but were not sure if it was a scam, they will understand and help
  • Pressure Sell
    Never be pressured to buy and never give your card details EVER unless you contact the company

Remember these points for any call you receive

Do not trust it is genuine, never give personal info, never give passcodes or pins, never use any info they give you always say you think they are scammers.

  • Always report fraud
    There are sites on the internet where you can report phone numbers as fraud like Action Fraud UK make sure you do this.
  • Loading software on your device
    If you are ever asked to put apps on your phone or computer NEVER EVER DO THIS they will load remote desktop controls and steal your money right in front of your eyes!
    They will also steal other data

Pay attention to these points and avoid being scammed by these criminals!

Phone Scam Fun

If you believe these people to be scammers have some fun with them, keep them on the phone as long as possible by saying wait I need to get that info and just have a cup of coffee or tea.

Every second you delay them you are saving someone else from being scammed

Have some fun by giving them a silly name or information just make it up, I like to give them my credit card number the wrong one of course and then repeat it but say something completely different, you can have great fun with a scammer.

Continually talk about something completely different the point is to wind them up, you will hear it in their voice they will get angrier and angrier, finish with have a good day I know you are a scammer.

Email Scam Advice

Email scams are so annoying filling up your inbox with a lot of rubbish, but there may be times you see a service offered you need, please, please just delete it, look they contacted you without your permission which shows they are desperate, now I am not saying all the time if you find an email that is of interest find out more from them.

Below we will cover how to discover if the email is genuine, next, we will move on to how to approach someone who offers you something you might need.

  • Is the email from the actual company?
    Check the email address after the @ there will be the address this should be the same as the genuine site!
  • Is the mail professionally written?
    See how the email sounds and looks does it look well formatted and readable, if not its probable fraud
  • Information or action
    Does the email ask you to send personal information, if it does it is fraud?
  • Expecting this email?
    Were you expecting this email, is it someone you know
  • Attachment
  • Links in the email
    Never open any links in an email even if you do not know the source

Interested in an offered service or product

If you are interested in the content of an email it does not mean you cannot get in touch, just be sure it is genuine there are a few things you can do outlined below.

  • Ask for more information from them
    Ask for their website, reviews and a contact you can talk to
  • Setup a meeting
    Have a Zoom call with them
  • See examples of their work
    Getting examples of their work is crucial to see their results
  • Ask questions
    Don't feel bad for asking questions of them like, why did you contact me and how did you get my email address, ask why they need to resort to emails, don't feel bad they approached you
  • Dont pay them in advance
    Never pay them until the work is delivered as expected
  • Guaranteed result
    Try to pin them on a guaranteed result especially if it SEO related
  • Understand a little about the service
    If you're paying money it makes sense to find out a little about the subject and use AI to quickly have an overview, get AI TO GENERATE SOME QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS AND QUIZ THEM to SEE IT THEY KNOW THERE STUFF

I know all this sounds very time-consuming but it is not and might save you wasting thousands on someone who blows hot air and fluff

21 Top Scam Tactics and How to Avoid Them

Scammers are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their methods, making it crucial to stay vigilant. Here are 21 top scam tactics to watch out for, along with tips on how to avoid falling victim to them.

  1. Unsolicited Emails
    - Be wary of unsolicited emails promising extraordinary results.
    - Avoid clicking on links or providing personal information in these emails.
  2. Exaggerated Claims
    - Scammers often make promises of instant top rankings or dramatic improvements.
    - Always ask for verifiable data to back up their claims.
  3. Creating a Sense of Urgency
    - They often create a false sense of urgency to push you into quick decisions.
    - Take your time to research and verify the offer.
  4. Vague Offers
    - Offers lacking specific details about services are suspicious.
    - Request detailed proposals and ask questions to clarify the scope of work.
  5. Fake Testimonials and Reviews
    - Many use fake testimonials to build credibility.
    - Verify testimonials by contacting past clients or checking independent reviews.
  6. Unverified Reviews
    - Be cautious of reviews that cannot be independently verified.
    - Look for reviews on reputable sites like Google or Yelp.
  7. Overly Positive Testimonials
    - Too-good-to-be-true testimonials are a red flag.
    - Seek balanced feedback that includes both positives and negatives.
  8. No Case Studies
    - Inability to provide case studies or examples of past work is a warning sign.
    - Request specific case studies relevant to your industry.
  9. Anonymous Clients
    - Scammers often cite clients who remain anonymous or can't be contacted.
    - Verify client identities and their experiences with the service provider.
  10. High-Pressure Sales Tactics
    - Limited-time offers and aggressive follow-ups are common scam tactics.
    - Take your time to make informed decisions without feeling pressured.
  11. Outlandish Promises
    - Be sceptical of guarantees of specific outcomes like top Google rankings.
    - Understand that legitimate marketing results take time and effort.
  12. Magic Formulas
    - Claims of secret formulas or proprietary methods should raise suspicion.
    - Request a clear explanation of the strategies and techniques used.
  13. No Clear Track Record
    - The lack of a verifiable track record is a significant red flag.
    - Check for a history of successful projects and satisfied clients.
  14. Unrealistic Results
    - Promises of instant success or unrealistic results are typical scam tactics.
    - Set realistic expectations and understand the time required for genuine results.
  15. Generic Proposals
    - Generic, one-size-fits-all proposals are often ineffective.
    - Ensure the proposal is tailored to your specific business needs and goals.
  16. Broad, High-Ticket Keywords
    - Using broad, high-ticket keywords that lack relevance can drive irrelevant traffic.
    - Focus on targeted keywords that are relevant to your niche and audience.
  17. Lack of Transparency
    - Scammers often operate with a lack of transparency about their methods.
    - Demand clear communication and detailed explanations of their processes.
  18. No Contract or Agreement
    - Operating without a formal contract or agreement is a common scam tactic.
    - Always have a clear, written contract outlining the scope of work and expectations.
  19. Unverified Company Information
    - Scammers often use fake or unverified company information.
    - Verify the legitimacy of the company through official records and third-party sources.
  20. Phishing Emails
    - Emails designed to steal personal information are prevalent.
    - Avoid clicking on suspicious links and ensure the email is from a legitimate source.
  21. Unrealistic Guarantees
    - Guarantees of specific outcomes like "number one on Google in a week" are suspect.
    - Understand that no one can guarantee specific rankings due to the complex nature of search engine algorithms.

How to Protect Yourself

  • Do Your Research: Always research the company and individual offering the service.
  • Ask for Proof: Request case studies, references, and performance data.
  • Verify Independently: Contact past clients and check independent reviews.
  • Read the Fine Print: Ensure you understand the terms of any agreement or contract.
  • Take Your Time: Don't rush into decisions; take the time to verify and validate the offer
  • Trust Your Instincts: If something feels off, it probably is. Trust your gut feelings.

To Summaries

Remember the only way to be sure that you're getting through to a legitimate company is by calling them yourself

If you're in any doubt and you are asked for any personal information pin codes or passwords immediately consider this to be a scam or a fraud or some kind

Legitimate companies will understand your concerns ask for a reference number and the name of the person who is calling you and say you will call them and verify they are legitimate because you consider them to be fraudulent then hang up please remember that you should not phone on the same phone as the fraudsters could well be Still on the line?

Consider any unsolicited phone calls to you to be fraud being prepared is the best way to protect yourself

Scammers are getting more sophisticated and they will often check the security of the systems they are trying to get you to fall for. 

They will understand how those systems work and they will try to exploit them to gain access to your account and your details they may already have a small amount of detail on you already giving them any more will build their database allowing more companies to contact you and try to scam you

As already mentioned, if any doubt hang up and call the legitimate company on a different phone

Most companies you deal with will have an account dashboard where you can log in and ask for help and support

The only way to be truly sure you are protected is to make contact with these companies yourself

If you are receiving an email, be very sceptical and check the URL of the email address to make sure that it is legitimate and then reach out to them by calling them or checking the details on their actual website

If you click on a link in an email check the URL is correct with the official website you're trying to reach many scammers set up mirror sites where they grab your personal and account details

You don't need to be afraid or worried just follow the advice of never giving your personal information of any kind in emails or on the phone if you have been contacted

Always contact them directly and you will avoid any scams in the future

I hope you have enjoyed this blog by us at Zenler protecting you from scammers and the fraudsters

Categories: : Zenler Marketing Help/Advice

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