Sneaky and unethical tactics marketers use

18 replies
I'm kind of tired of the "hurry one copy left at this price" tactic that many internet marketers seem to use. It almost makes me not want to buy from them when they do that and usually I won't. I can't believe Internet marketers still do that crap yet I still see it quite frequently and just saw it in the WSO forum. Can they really expect us to think they are only going to sell one more copy at that price or that they only have one left especially when almost all of these products are digital? Do they think we were all born yesterday or something? So what other sneaky tactics do marketers use that we should be aware of.
#marketers #sneaky #tactics #unethical
  • Profile picture of the author agmccall
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    Originally Posted by Mikej413 View Post

    I'm kind of tired of the "hurry one copy left at this price" tactic that many internet marketers seem to use. It almost makes me not want to buy from them when they do that and usually I won't. I can't believe Internet marketers still do that crap yet I still see it quite frequently and just saw it in the WSO forum. Can they really expect us to think they are only going to sell one more copy at that price or that they only have one left especially when almost all of these products are digital? Do they think we were all born yesterday or something? So what other sneaky tactics do marketers use that we should be aware of.
    It is called a dime sale. And they do sell "just one more copy" at that price, then it goes up a predetermined amount until it maxes out. It encourages people to "Buy Now" instead of waiting. But, you were not born yesterday, so you already knew that.

    al
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    • Profile picture of the author Mikej413
      Originally Posted by agmccall View Post

      It is called a dime sale. And they do sell "just one more copy" at that price, then it goes up a predetermined amount until it maxes out. It encourages people to "Buy Now" instead of waiting. But, you were not born yesterday, so you already knew that.

      al

      Dude, your sarcasm is quite unnecessary. Besides how do you know they only sell one more item at that price? Are you a seller? They could just say that then keep selling it at that price meanwhile letting everyone believe this is the last one then keep on selling. No one will ever know except them. Don't tell me that's not possible.
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      • Profile picture of the author David Keith
        Originally Posted by Mikej413 View Post

        Dude, your sarcasm is quite unnecessary. Besides how do you know they only sell one more item at that price? Are you a seller? They could just say that then keep selling it at that price meanwhile letting everyone believe this is the last one then keep on selling. No one will ever know except them. Don't tell me that's not possible.
        most of the popular software solutions that power the shopping cart systems IMers use have built in dime sale systems. so yes, the vast majority of the time there is only 1 more sold at that price...although it usually goes up by a "dime" or something silly. not really enough to matter to be honest. Then they usually max the price out at 10-20 or so. many times even less.
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        • Profile picture of the author Mikej413
          Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

          most of the popular software solutions that power the shopping cart systems IMers use have built in dime sale systems. so yes, the vast majority of the time there is only 1 more sold at that price...although it usually goes up by a "dime" or something silly. not really enough to matter to be honest. Then they usually max the price out at 10-20 or so. many times even less.

          Oh I see. I stand corrected then. See that? You learn something new on here. So I guess Internet marketers are maybe not as sneaky or unethical as I thought. Thanks for letting me know in a professional manner.


          The particular product I was looking at went from 20 then to 10 for the one time only thing. I might consider purchasing it now that I know how it goes and it's not really a black hat trick.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve B
    Mike,

    One of the choices you will face if you get into IM is where to set the bar for your own standards of conduct. You have to decide because everyone else has the same choice yet there are no set standards really.

    By that, I mean, what is ethical in one person's eyes is not ethical in another's.

    What you have described is just one small example of a marketing tactic that some people use and others refuse to use. There are many, many other questionable or sometimes seemingly shady tricks that are employed for the purpose of "making the sale."

    Other such tactics might include faked testimonials, doctored screen shots, inflated sales figures, less-than-truthful advertising messages ("so much traffic it crashed my server"), personal accomplishments that never happened "my high six figure income" . . . and dozens of other fibs, stretches, and outright lies.

    In some people's minds . . . all is fair in marketing and they just shrug it off because "everyone does it."

    That's a long answer to your question. The bottom line is this . . . only do what you are comfortable doing - and only you can figure that out. I'm not excusing those that choose to be dishonest - just saying that nothing you or I or anyone else says is going to turn them into totally honest marketers.

    If you don't like their marketing tactics, don't pay any attention to them!

    The best to all of you,

    Steve
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    • Profile picture of the author Mikej413
      Originally Posted by Steve B View Post

      Mike,

      One of the choices you will face if you get into IM is where to set the bar for your own standards of conduct. You have to decide because everyone else has the same choice yet there are no set standards really.

      By that, I mean, what is ethical in one person's eyes is not ethical in another's.

      What you have described is just one small example of a marketing tactic that some people use and others refuse to use. There are many, many other questionable or sometimes seemingly shady tricks that are employed for the purpose of "making the sale."

      Other such tactics might include faked testimonials, doctored screen shots, inflated sales figures, less-than-truthful advertising messages ("so much traffic it crashed my server"), personal accomplishments that never happened "my high six figure income" . . . and dozens of other fibs, stretches, and outright lies.

      In some people's minds . . . all is fair in marketing and they just shrug it off because "everyone does it."

      That's a long answer to your question. The bottom line is this . . . only do what you are comfortable doing - and only you can figure that out. I'm not excusing those that choose to be dishonest - just saying that nothing you or I or anyone else says is going to turn them into totally honest marketers.

      If you don't like their marketing tactics, don't pay any attention to them!

      The best to all of you,

      Steve


      Thanks. Sometimes there is a thin line between unethical and illegal though. Faking testimonials is borderline illegal if not out right illegal.
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  • Profile picture of the author nmwf
    Mike, remember that as a consumer, you hold the power and have the ability to send these types of merchants a message with your wallet.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ayawa
    "hurry one copy left at this price" - No matter since it has a refund option.
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  • Profile picture of the author heruma
    This method is also used in different manner in real estate industry.

    Price will be up by $1,000 next week.

    It's purpose is to create urgency.

    It is basic human psychology.

    You want to get something at the lowest price possible.

    Some affiliate throw-in tons of bonuses, some are really their own products, some just give you plr products.

    We are the decision makers, we had fallen into it before, we learned from it and just stay cool when those offer came out.
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  • Originally Posted by Mikej413 View Post

    I'm kind of tired of the "hurry one copy left at this price" tactic that many internet marketers seem to use. It almost makes me not want to buy from them when they do that and usually I won't.
    Are you referring to something like this?


    I can't believe Internet marketers still do that crap yet I still see it quite frequently and just saw it in the WSO forum.
    The reason you see it quite frequently, and in the WSO forum, is because it's
    actually an option offered by the payment processor to increase the price with every sale.

    In fact, this forum's own processor "warrior payments" has this feature available.



    The above image is showing marketers how to set it up.

    In a way, most marketers are simply using the tools that are made available to them. For the most part, this strategy works well if a potential customer already has their eye on a product, and they know that with the next sale, they will be paying more.

    Do they think we were all born yesterday or something?
    What you could do is follow one of those WSO's and watch the price go up, and read peoples comments on how they were "glad they got in at x price".


    Maybe they were born yesterday, but they still got a better deal than the guy who was born today!

    hehehe.... see what I did there?
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    • Profile picture of the author tyronne78
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      • Profile picture of the author The Niche Man
        Your original point was valid, although everyone somehow got hung up on the dime-sale example. There are tons of classic examples and new one's springing up daily. But that's the price of living or marketing in the wild, wild internet.

        The only alternatives is to seek more government involvement (fingers in throat).

        - Or -

        Police ourselves By ...
        - Reporting culprits.
        - Applying Your own Due Diligence.
        - Staying informed.
        - Helping to Educate others.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mikej413
    Listen, I retracted my statements after I found out it is a legitimate thing. So really no need for anyone to rub my nose it at this point. Thanks.
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    • Profile picture of the author karlstech
      Originally Posted by Mikej413 View Post

      Listen, I retracted my statements after I found out it is a legitimate thing. So really no need for anyone to rub my nose it at this point. Thanks.
      Like NicheMan mentioned in this thread, your statements are indeed valid since many of the online marketers never actually raise the price after that one copy sale.

      I've seen plenty of crappy Clickbank sales pages that use this strategy and when I check o it the next day, 2 days after or even 2 weeks after the salesperson still uses this approach.

      I believe that the "lowered one-time price" is indeed the product's original price tag.

      Not in all cases, but in a few at least. I'm not saying that this is illegal, it might be a sales tactic that works for some people, but it always puts me off,

      So, your concerns are valid, it's just that many people do in fact raise the price, while some don't.

      It's something we have to live with and when we know that someone is doing this the wrong way, call them out on it. I prefer an honest salesperson who's not afraid to speak the truth about his/her product, while still promoting it in a way that requires some common decency and logical thinking!

      All the best,

      Karl
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  • Yes, however scarcity is a huge human motivator..

    People want what they can't have. This tactic is highly effective..

    And yes (It's annoying) however it works..
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    • Profile picture of the author Cali16
      Originally Posted by selfdisciplineacademy View Post

      Yes, however scarcity is a huge human motivator..

      People want what they can't have. This tactic is highly effective..
      Scarcity and "people want what they can't have" (which is a myth far more often than not) aren't the same thing.

      Scarcity does two things - it creates urgency and increases perceived value. People don't want to "miss out" on something that might be quite valuable (e.g. a money making opportunity).

      Also, most people want to get whatever they're buying at the lowest possible price, so incrementally raising the price or raising it after a certain amount of time works well.

      Those are the psychological principles driving these tactics.

      The scarcity tactic is sometimes legit. Often, it's to prevent saturation or because the seller is offering his or her time (e.g. coaching) and will take on only so many students. But there are certainly sellers who use the tactic dishonestly as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author Winning34
    I think the point OP is making is valid.

    Just because there's an option to be able to do it in some piece of software doesn't suddenly make it ok. Everyone knows that there's no "stock" in digital products. It's a bit like those banner ads that say "Congratulations, you are our millionth visitor - click here!!"

    I guess these tactics work in the often hyped-up MMO industry aimed at internet noobs but tactics like that in other markets are just going to damage the hard-earned reputation of an authority site.
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    • Originally Posted by Winning34 View Post

      Everyone knows that there's no "stock" in digital products. It's a bit like those banner ads that say "Congratulations, you are our millionth visitor - click here!!"
      There may be no stock in digital products, (and I'm assuming that you mean that a digital product vendor can't possibly run out of stock on a digital download,) however said vendor does have the right to LIMIT the amount of sales of a certain product, (make limited Licenses available, etc).

      The Millionth visitor reference you made is somewhat more leaning towards a company straight up lying in order to get clicks, as opposed to a vendor using a sales message that may actually be true!

      Originally Posted by Winning34 View Post

      I guess these tactics work in the often hyped-up MMO industry aimed at internet noobs but tactics like that in other markets are just going to damage the hard-earned reputation of an authority site.
      I'm not personally aware of any market that does not use tactics that are questioned by consumers. Whether legit or not.

      All retail stores online offline use similar tactics. There's always a sale on something, and the sale always ends, so hurry in today!

      Late night infomercials are even worse, since we all know that even if we are not "one of the next 50 callers in the next 10 minutes", we'll probably still get the deal!
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      • Profile picture of the author The Niche Man
        Originally Posted by stoltingmediagroup View Post

        T
        Late night infomercials are even worse, since we all know that even if we are not "one of the next 50 callers in the next 10 minutes", we'll probably still get the deal!
        Late night infomercials are the best at walking the line without going over, when it comes to sneaky, ethical and unethical.

        One of the top methods (or ploys if you ask me) is the ...
        "Order now get an extra one FREE!" Just pay shipping and handling.

        The catch? The shipping and handling cost is the same or more than the original product you bought. Gotcha! They (undercover) upsell you automatically. Boy those guys are good ... or greedy!
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