Friday, October 26, 2007

The Marketing Whore on Dominance Humping, Tact and Grace(ie)

One of the things I'm known for is being nice. Well, I'm also known for being opinionated and a former escort too. But most folks who know me, have worked with me, will tell you I'm nice ~ in that patient and tolerant way (which has led me into giving away lots of help and advice for free in many arenas). But sometimes...

Oh, sometimes, I just don't understand how people can be so rude. I can understand and accept ignorance. Ditto for a difference of opinion. But rudeness?

The example I'm about to share will not name names ~ not out of respect but because I don't want to give them any attention. They do not deserve it.

And while I'm on the subject of 'outing' people, or addressing the concerns of people's feelings, let me say that I'm not worried that they will visit here and notice themselves in the example ~ because people like this never see themselves in the bad examples or as the ones needing the corrections. In all my years of working with people this is the case. Meanwhile, those who would be mortified to make such errors ~ those who never do such things because they are people filled with common sense and decency ~ these kind-hearted people always fear these things are about them. Please don't flood my inbox with apologies or concerns; if you were the person who did what I'm about to describe, you'd already know of my displeasure. So no worries for those of you reading here.

Now, on to today's lesson.

As most of you know, my site Sex-Kitten.Net (NWS) has the Sex-Kitten Feed (NWS), which is a way to promote our friends and associates by helping to broadcast their blog's RSS feed (NWS). (The feed is featured on the home page of the site, on other blogs in the feed & with it's own page.) When persons submit their site and feed for such promotion, I always check to see that A) the feed is working properly and 2) that they have linked back (to either the feed itself or the main site). If they have errors or have not reciprocated with a link, I contact them.

Recently I had to contact several folks to tell them that I would activate their feed once they linked back and then contacted me to let me know they had done so. Usually one of two things happen: they apologize for the oversight and correct it, or they ignore the emails (and I delete the submission). But this week I had one of the rare fellows who reacts rudely.

His first response was to tell me to go ahead and drop his submission because he "never got a single referral from us". I calmly wrote back that of course he hadn't ~ due to no recip, he had never been activated. I'd be happy to remove his submission if he wished, but thought he should know why he'd never received any traffic.

At this point I expected an 'ah-ha' moment, followed by him placing the link and emailing to telling me so. Maybe even with an apology for not understanding... But no.

Instead I receive an email asking demanding me for my site stats. "How many unique visitors do you get per day?"

Now folks, there are several problems with this response.

First of all, asking a webmaster for their blog stats is rather like asking a person how much they make a year. Sure, some might not be offended; some might even give you the answer. But many people, in either situation, will be greatly offended. Generally, these matters are considered none of your business. So why risk offending anyone?

If you think that I owe this person my stats because we're doing business together, remember this: the SK feed is free. He's not paying ~ no one's paying ~ for this service; it's not advertising. I, the person offering the service, isn't asking him (or anyone) about their site traffic (or pagerank or anything). For him to go there is rather like your brother-in-law asking you what your salary is or how much your home cost. It's inappropriate.

Secondly, if this man feels he is owed this info in order to evaluate the opportunity, or if he thinks this sort of questioning shows that he is Mr Serious Internet Businessman, then he needs to get a clue ~ and some tact.

He, you, I ~ anyone, can do some simple research to get an idea of traffic on any website. It's not rocket science.

If he doesn't know how to do this, or is too lazy to do it and expects me to tell him, or if he has done his homework and is trying to 'test me' for my honesty and credibility, well, I'm completely unimpressed. And I'm not playing.

His inability to employ good old fashioned tact and common sense leaves me cold.

The lesson here is that when you approach someone, including to take advantage of their opportunity, mind your manners. Don't ask questions which are none of your business. And if you should think it is your business, proceed politely. Don't pose questions as demands.

In fact, after some research of my own on this man, his sites and business practices, I'm of the impression that this man was dominance humping. He read my polite, and perhaps somewhat girly closing (typically I sign-off all my emails, business and personal, "with much affection, Gracie"), and concluded that I don't know what I'm doing. He assumed that he could intimidate me with a hard-boiled-business-numbers response to make me sit back (with my pretty head spinning from all that thinky math!) and take notice of his manly knowledge so that he could negotiate some other situation for himself. (As in I'd really really want his link to 'me' and be willing to give him additional promotions &/or advertising to get it.) But all I noticed was his bad manners and lack of respect.

I had the offer, the opportunity; I make the rules. In this case, I was offering to promote his site for free and all I asked for in return was a link. Not only is this a nominal 'price' it's a normal one. If he didn't like the rules, then he can take a pass on the opportunity. No one is forcing him to do this. For him to mistake kindness and the patience to continue to explain how the opportunity works for a chance to negotiate terms, or worse, some weakness on part, is a huge mistake.

I'm not paranoid about the dominance humping; I run into this quite often. And I'm betting you other ladies do too.

Gender, as in femaleness, combined with tolerance and understanding is seen as weak and unintelligent. Ask any mommy blogger if advertisers try to undermine their credibility and the value of their blog ~ to get cheaper advertising. (If you and your blog were so crappy, why would they want to advertise there?) But in the adult industry it's even worse. We're just dumb girls who whore ourselves and our sites on dumb luck and boobs. (I guess they think we are what we sell.)

Since I don't expect yet another blog post on gender issues to affect any real changes by the men who practice dominance humping, the lesson here is really for the women.

Don't let dominance humping (from men or women) undermine your actions. Know your business and make your rules. Don't let them negotiate the non-negotiable.

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Grab The Bookmarketer For Your Site

5 Comments:

Anonymous greg said...

Well said, Gracie! It's sad that there people like this still around - and still trying that same old crap. But I love to read your stuff when you've got a head full of steam. Great!

October 26, 2007 5:38 AM  
Anonymous Amanda said...

I LOVE your new phrase. I'm going to use "dominance humping" (with permission).

And yes, great rant!

XX

October 26, 2007 9:50 AM  
Blogger English said...

I'd like to say that this is rare, but I see it often.
I'm a woman CEO and I get this crap all the time. People want to test your credibility. Who the hell are THEY that they can sit in judgment?
I hope you just stopped emailing him. He isn't worth your time or effort.

October 31, 2007 10:12 PM  
Blogger Marketing Whore said...

Yes, English, I did stop email with him. I don't like to waste my time, but sometimes, it still sticks in my craw ;)

What I often do at times like this is write in a document (not an email, as that's too easy to hit send) with all I wanted to say. Usually such venting is enough, but sometimes it turns into a rant, like this post ;)

But I hope that it was useful in some ways too. :)

Greg, I know you would never be one of these jerks. And Amanda, feel free to use it and credit me ~ often lol

November 1, 2007 4:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you have answered one of your questions in your posts.

Email sign offs are important. They do make an impression. Business is business, and 'with much affection' isn't assertive.

That being said, I don't have a high amount of faith with male bloggers or webmasters. Many do what they do to score some form of sexual favor, and if not that, it's some form of validation. Yes, you're nicer than me. I would have told him to screw himself, or told him that from within, or would not have replied. The danger with the online content and sites is that if a person gets angry, they tend to blog about it.

Seriously though, I would advise that you change your sign off so it's less girlie or affectionate even: regards, and yours sincerely work well without any ambiguity.

Sometimes it's not about being 'nice' all the time, it's about being assertive. There are a lot of charlatans on the Internet, many who think it's a free medium, and along with that, giving them free reign to say whatever they choose to say, or say things they would never dare say in a real face to face setting.

Me, personally, I don't have time for people like that.

November 15, 2007 6:42 AM  

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