How To Tell If You're Getting Conned

by Steven Wagenheim 10 replies
I know the seasoned vets already know this but for you new folks wondering
if that sales page is really the answer to your problems with its bold claims,
there is an easy way to tell where the money is coming from when looking
at those screen prints, especially if they're Clickbank screen prints.

I just got an email with a link to a sales page for this money making system.
I read through the copy and then got to the screen prints.

The first thing I looked for was the dates and the figures. I then looked to
see any dates where sales started tailing off and I could pull out individual
transactions. In some cases, the merchant makes this easy by actually
showing the individual transaction screen, blanking out some of the data but
leaving the amounts...Big mistake.

I then went down to the price of the product and then did the Clickbank
calculations to figure out what they would actually receive per each sale.

I then went back up to the screen prints to see if it matched. Sure enough,
every single sale was for the money making system itself and NOT for
anything within the system.

In other words, I had seen no proof that this person was making any kind
of money other than the money they made selling the system.

Ah, but it gets even better.

On a few days, usually the beginning of the screen print time frame, sales
are off the charts, and then after a few days they trickle to almost nothing.

This is another big mistake. If you're going to con people, don't show that
all those sales came from a big product launch and a bunch of JV or
affiliate partners and then let people see that after a few days, there are
hardly any sales at all.

After 5 years of looking at this crap, I can pick out the schemes a mile
away.

The really good "systems" will show money being earned of all kinds of
amounts because they're really selling things using the system. At the
very least, even if they're selling one product, like a favorite affiliate
product, the income amounts per sale will be different than the price of
the product.

Okay, is this 100% fool proof? Of course not. Occasionally, you will decide
something is a scheme when it's really not. But you will NEVER call something
legit when it's not using my criteria, unless the screen prints have been
doctored.

And if they have, there is an easy way to tell, but I won't get into that
here because I don't want to give people ideas. So don't even ask.

And please, before anybody comes at me with "this isn't always true"
please read 2 paragraphs above. I know it's not. But it's true more times
than it isn't.

Do your due diligence folks. There are a lot of snake oil salesmen out
there.
#main internet marketing discussion forum #coming #money
Avatar of Unregistered
  • Profile picture of the author Chris W. Sutton
    You know, Steven, I hate those screen shots of "made money" and I will never use them for my own sales pages. I understand WHY people use them but that is just not for me. For myself, I look at people who are using those screen shots as people who feel they have something to prove and it creates a feeling of distrust in me. I'm not saying they ARE dishonest, I am just saying that is the way I look at them.

    If a person brands themselves as someone who is honest, gives fantastic customer service and has integrity, people won't NEED to see those screen shots.

    Just my opinion!

    Take care!
    Signature

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88548].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Originally Posted by Chris W. Sutton View Post

      You know, Steven, I hate those screen shots of "made money" and I will never use them for my own sales pages. I understand WHY people use them but that is just not for me. For myself, I look at people who are using those screen shots as people who feel they have something to prove and it creates a feeling of distrust in me. I'm not saying they ARE dishonest, I am just saying that is the way I look at them.

      If a person brands themselves as someone who is honest, gives fantastic customer service and has integrity, people won't NEED to see those screen shots.

      Just my opinion!

      Take care!
      Chris, as a customer I agree with you, but unfortunately, there are so
      many skeptical people in the IM niche, that they almost require them.

      I am actually moving away from them and towards videos as they aren't
      as easily faked.

      I take it your sales don't come from the IM niche. It's almost mandatory
      that you show some kind of proof in that niche or you will lose sales. There
      is just no way around it.

      Having said that, I try to show proof that is believable.

      I like to think I do a decent job of doing that.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88556].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Scott Murdaugh
        Beyond what you've already covered, it's extremely easy for anyone to fabricate fake screen shots using a little bit of photoshop.

        I wouldn't do it for any reason other than illustrative purposes, but I could fabricate any screen shot you'd like to see within 20 minutes.

        I guess the moral of the story is you can never really trust any screen shots.

        If you're buying say a website, and you don't know the seller, run analytics yourself for a few days before you make a purchase.

        If it's an info product, buyer beware.

        -Scott
        Signature

        Over $30 Million In Marketing Data And A Decade Of Consistently Generating Breakthrough Results - Ask How My Unique Approach To Copy Typically Outsells Traditional Ads By Up To 29x Or More...

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88573].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author sparrow
        Steve

        the other thing some of these guys show is the date

        many times the dates are from numbers over a year ago, that one always gets me

        I woud expect them to show numbers that are more recent than over a year ago to show the system still works

        Ed
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88575].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author ctutt
        Me Thinks...ummm, dare I say it?
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88577].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author jasonl70
        chris - I'm actually the opposite

        I know they are very easy to fake - but it is even easier to include when it's real.. If I don't see screen shots, then I seriously question it.

        Just like testimonials - easy to fake, but I still want to see them. And if there are no testimonials, I am REALLY going to question things.

        So, it's not that I'm sold by a site having all this - but more a matter of my NOT being sold because of the LACK of providing such basic things.

        I think it was Dan Kennedy who said "hit them over the head with a preponderance of proof !". I simply can't imagine why any marketer with access to this sort of 'proof' would ever NOT include it.
        Signature

        -Jason

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88607].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author MaskedMarketer
          Definitely agreed, Jason. I need to SEE proof. Prefer videos. I dont do "screen shots"
          Signature

          "One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
          "


          "I Pay Less Attention to What Men Say. I Just Watch What They Do."
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88620].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author John Ritz
            I prefer to have testimonials by well-known people with good reputations over screen-shots of my Paypal or CB account, but if I was ever going to include that information, I would definitely do it with a screen capture video of me logging into my account and showing you, rather than a static image.

            I'm sure that can be faked, too, but it's a lot harder, and when you combine it with other proof (like the aforementioned testies) and by having a top-notch reputation yourself, it's much more solid overall.

            Here's a couple posts I made about proof, and the different things you can do that'll give you much more cred than those tired overused earnings snapshots:

            How To Beef Up Your Proof - Part 1

            and

            How To Beef Up Your Proof - Part 2
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88688].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author Terry Hatfield
              What do I think the best proof in a sales letter is?

              Testamonials.

              When you say something in a letter it is hype. When someone else says something it is powerful.

              I especially like videos of the testamonials.

              Screenshots of earnings do nothing for me.

              Also Chris's suggestion of a money back gaurantee is very important.

              Terry
              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88778].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Erik B
      Well said Chris! This is very true.


      Originally Posted by Chris W. Sutton View Post

      You know, Steven, I hate those screen shots of "made money" and I will never use them for my own sales pages. I understand WHY people use them but that is just not for me. For myself, I look at people who are using those screen shots as people who feel they have something to prove and it creates a feeling of distrust in me. I'm not saying they ARE dishonest, I am just saying that is the way I look at them.

      If a person brands themselves as someone who is honest, gives fantastic customer service and has integrity, people won't NEED to see those screen shots.

      Just my opinion!

      Take care!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88581].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Chris W. Sutton
    Steven,

    I'm certainly not doubting what you are saying but my own personal feeling is that if I offer a guaranteed money back policy that that would be enough. How do people know I will really give their money back. They don't but, then again, they don't know if the shots are real, either.

    I have quite often offered money back guarantees with no time limit set and I have yet to have someone ask for a refund outside the 30 day period.

    I'm not disagreeing with you... this is just my policy.

    Take care!
    Signature

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88571].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
    Originally Posted by Steven Wagenheim View Post

    Okay, is this 100% fool proof? Of course not. Occasionally, you will decide something is a scheme when it's really not. But you will NEVER call something legit when it's not using my criteria, unless the screen prints have been doctored.
    I simply don't put any weight behind that type of screen shot at all, faked or not.

    Back in Nebraska, we used to have gopher snakes and rattlesnakes. They look identical, right down to a rattle on the tail. A gopher snake is harmless, unless you're a gopher. A big rattlesnake can kill you if it hits you right. You'll never get in trouble treating a gopher snake like a rattler, but the other way around could get you poisoned.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[88613].message }}
Avatar of Unregistered

Trending Topics