Archive for the 'Marketing' Category

Twitter is a Dangerous Place for Scammy Diet Gurus

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

I had never heard of Gillian McKeith until this morning. She is a Scottish TV star - here is a quote from her own website:

Gillian McKeith is the internationally acclaimed Holistic Nutritionist and presenter of You Are What You Eat hit Channel 4 series that took the nation by storm

She is a little bit extra famous, at least for today, because she had a weird hissy fit on Twitter.

There is no evidence of the debacle on her twitter account except for an easily refutable tweet implicitly denying that it is her twitter account. There is, of course, ample screen caps and links to cached pages.

Here is what happened in chronological order:

As an aside to the drama, the school that granted Gillian a “PhD” is now closed and is the subject of a page on Quackwatch.

Check out the Guardian for more…

Deja Vu: Britain’s Got Talented Weightloss Scammers

Sunday, June 21st, 2009

I just saw this on the Daily Mail website…


Almost everything about Jackie Cox mirrors the Kimkins Controversy.

  • 500 calorie diet -check.
  • Weightloss guru who is discovered to be obese -check.
  • Dieters reporting hair loss and other health side effects -check.

There is one very important difference. As far as I know, Jackie Cox has never posted fake pictures of herself or fabricated facts about her own successful long term weight loss. The other difference may be a direct result of that difference. Her diet empire, LighterLife, continues to thrive and Jackie lives the good life in the Bahamas (a popular tax haven with the Brits).

Common Blog Contest Mistakes Part 1: Sucky Prizes

Saturday, January 17th, 2009

prizeContests have been pretty popular on the blogosphere over the past couple of years. The trend seems to be waning quite a bit these days. This could be the result of the economic crisis or it could be that many bloggers felt that they got a lousy ROI from contests.

I have run a few contests on this and other blogs. By and large I would say they were failures. I have learned from my mistakes and I figured that I could fill in some space on this blog by telling you about some of them.

One of the most common mistakes is giving away something that nobody wants. I found a good example of this at Six Different Ways. There may be a few people who would want something that may damage your wall, door or the product if removed.

I have held two separate contests that had ‘mystery prizes’ and it seems that people don’t like surprises. I had one entrant for the first contest and zero for the second.

Some people offer fantastic prizes, but ask for a lot in return. Tyler Cruz is giving away PS2s and wide screen monitors, but only to people who become affiliates (downline from him) and earn high revenues.

Personally, I think that cold hard cash is often the best prize. I had a very simple contest a few years back that involved awarding cash (through PayPal) to the first person who congratulated me on reaching a certain web traffic milestone. This was modestly effective because it encouraged frequent visits from the people who had seen the contest details and decided that they wanted to win.