I just received a letter in the mail from XY7.com that begins:

(letter text censored due to copyright complaint)

It goes on for several paragraphs and a bulleted list, explaining why I should use their on-line marketing services. But there's one major problem: I didn't stop by their booth! (I very rarely give my card out to booth people at these conferences.)

If this sounds familiar, it's because almost the same thing happened back in 2004 with Atlas OnePoint. Strangely, that was also the result of an SES Conference.

When are these people going to learn?!

Would you trust your on-line marketing to a spammer?

For what it's worth, XY7.com is a division of Rapid Response Marketing, LLC. The letter was sent from:

[address censored due to copyright complaint]

Please let him know if you were similarly spammed. (I've left off his cell phone and fax numbers.)

Amusingly, the letter ends with "Please bring this letter to our both at the Ad Tech SF Conference to receive your XY7 Cash Card."

I am going up to ad:tech this afternoon. Perhaps I will drop by with my digital camera, or maybe a microphone. I wonder if he will be there. Image the fun!

Posted by jzawodn at April 26, 2006 11:11 AM

Reader Comments
# COD said:

Unless you opted out when you registered for the conference, you almost certainly granted the conference organizers the right to share your registration data with all vendors at the conference. Yeah, the contact should have been less generic, but I really don't see a show vendor contacting a show attendee as rising to the level of spam. You were there, it's not a bad assumption on their part that you have interests somewhat related to their product. If anybody is at fault, it's the show organizer that handed out the registration spreadsheet with only your implied consent by attending, since I assume if there had been an opt-out opportunity you would have been all over it!

on April 26, 2006 11:41 AM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

Sorry, but I disagree. It's spam.

It's unsolicitied commercial mail that wrongly identifies me as someone who (a) visited their booth and (b) is interested in their services.

on April 26, 2006 11:44 AM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

Send me your email address and I'll pass it out at the conference. :-)

on April 26, 2006 12:08 PM
# Andy Beal said:

They sent me the same letter - I didn't go anywhere near the booth.

It was easy enough to just throw it in the trash. That being said, it didn't leave a good impression with me.

As a marketer, I didn't get pissed that they sent the letter. But as a marketer, I did think very poorly of them for not doing a better job with targeting their message.

on April 26, 2006 12:53 PM
# Vijay said:

Waiting for the fun.. Please keep us posted.. Lolzz

on April 26, 2006 02:32 PM
# WebMetricsGuru said:

I got 2 letters in the mail this week from ZY7.com; I had no idea where they got my name from - but I think it was from SESNY06. It was annoying. Just now, I see you got the same letter.

on April 26, 2006 04:52 PM
# Dan said:

They'll learn when it stops working, so don't reward them with this publicity!

on April 26, 2006 07:43 PM

That letter is not really malicious Spam. We did contact them and will be stopping by their booth again, at AdTech tommorrow.

Meeting them as SES was a pleasure, they were very competant and professional.

There was probably a misunderstanding from the suppliers of the email lists. MIX-UPS happen to ALL Human Beings in EVERY Profession ...Who here has NOT made marketing errors !!!!

Why not just be ... COMPASSIONATE & FORGIVING ?????

Why publically hurt their feelings & "finger" these people. All people make errors from time to time.
They are trying to run a business and survive in this world.

on April 26, 2006 07:50 PM
# Rose DesRochers said:

I agree with Jeremy that it's spam. I suggest adding their name to a blacklist and uploading it so email harvesters can have fun. :)

on April 26, 2006 07:53 PM
# Charles said:

This is nothing compared to the stuffI get on Yahoo! Groups lists.

For example, today some bozo from "VT Manpower Consultancy Services Pvt Ltd" spammed 20+ Yahoo! Groups with one email. Not only that, but this is the third time in three weeks that he's been able to do it.

The Yahoo! Groups folks is asleep at the wheel when it comes to even basic spam prevention. I mean, who allows users to post the same message to multiple groups?

on April 26, 2006 08:36 PM
# Joe Hunkins said:

Ad-Tech = 1000 suits + Booth Babes + 0.5 expertise of WMW

But sorry to miss it. Last year I attended a couple of the keynotes and they were excellent.

on April 26, 2006 09:36 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

If so, I'd *love* to buy one. :-)

on April 26, 2006 09:54 PM
# Simon said:

Yep, in my office the two of us that went to SESNY06 both received that very same letter from XY7 a couple of days ago.

on April 27, 2006 04:10 AM
# Gerald Buckley said:

I emailed you coupla weeks ago and didn't get so much as a wink. Let alone flipped off! Must remember to try harder next time :)

One of the departments I work around convenes conferences (at the day job) and they make the attendee email list available to exhibitors. I can see an exhibitor taking that list and "spamming" it much like you're just experienced. So far most of my experiences have been positive to neutral.

It would have been a little more effort for XY7 to have crafted their message a bit differently. What's the saying... Should liked to have written a shorter letter if I but only had more time.

Yeah, they screwed up. Probably all you'll get out of poor Mr. Izzo is a deer in the headlights response. If he's from Las Vegas where they're hq'd with a name like Izzo... you might be gentle. Cement galoshes and all...

on April 27, 2006 04:49 AM
# Jacques Marneweck said:

A few years back I went to the Futurex exhibition and did the following:

* gave a false email address (used for spam reporting)
* told the data capturer that I was not interested in spam from the organisers / companies with booths.

ITWeb sold that email list to spammers (who did not have booths at that exhibition) as well as to companies who had boothes. Best part is those idiots SPAM and get themselves added (a) to a RBL (which is used by a couple of other companies) and (b) to a RHSBL (which is once again used by a couple of companies) which blocks them from spamming a couple hundred domains. The email address also filters to SpamCop so they get a nice abuse email back to their ISP which causes more problems for the spammer. And if they are really unlucky and I have time to open a docket I open a docket at the local police station for sending spam per the .za ECT act. Part of the .za law states that they have to tell you where they got your email address from and one spam outfit SA Yellow keeps comming up time and time again for selling lists of email addresses, etc. harvested from conferences, exhibitions, whois records, etc.

on April 27, 2006 06:59 AM
# greg hartnett said:

We received four of them in the mail - one for each attendee. I know that I didn't stop by their booth, and definitely did not request their information.

on April 27, 2006 09:15 AM
# Abu Hurayrah said:

Not trying to cozy up to Jeremy or tick-off marketers, but being marketed to (or marketed, in the case where WE are the products [e.g., via our e-mail addresses]) is not pleasant nor enjoyable. It is, in fact, downright degrading. And this is part of what has been presented by Jeremy in this e-mail that there is absolutely no concern for the person, but rather uses social gimmicks (e.g., faux familiarity) to lure someone into making a purchase.

If what I have described above is the science of marketing, then know that this is exactly what I (and probably most other thinking beings) find absolutely abhorrent.

GOOD products find markets & are found BY their prospective markets. It is only poor quality or unnecessary products (or products seeking a wider, and therefore more lucrative market) that require extensive marketing.

By far, I am more likely to buy a product via a word-of-mouth recommendation than I am for an advertisement, commericial, or sales-pitch. But to marketers, and especially e-mail marketers (i.e., spammers), the 999,999 people they annoy for their 1 sale are inconsequential. The net short-term profit is justified through their own twisted moral system.

Jeremy: Sorry for the tirade - the responses found in some of these comments claiming you were wrong for your reaction seemed to hit a raw nerve. You can remove this comment if you find it inappropriate.

on April 27, 2006 09:21 AM
# Brian M said:

Yes, I got TWO of these letters in the mail last week as well... Even though I never went near their booth, it must be from SES NYC because PubCon was just last week, and it is too soon for snail mail follow-up...

on April 27, 2006 06:30 PM
# Brian Mark said:

I also got that one. I attended SESNY, but as a speaker. I find it really poor that when I didn't go to their booth, nor was I attending the conference to really learn anything, that they're sending me this crap.

At least if it were someone who paid to go it'd be marketing to the right people. But c'mon, Andy Beal? Jeremy Zawodny? Did they send one to Bruce Clay and Danny Sullivan?

on April 27, 2006 07:28 PM
# Mat Siltala said:

I got my letter last week and it was very annoying. Attending the SESNY06 I assumed I would get some people marketing to me, but the ironic (funny) thing is that not one person I actually dropped a card off with (and wanted to hear from) HAS got back to me.

on May 1, 2006 08:16 AM
# Amanda Watlington said:

It seems like almost every day I get a blizzard of unsolicted mail. This near daily load of spam gives me a nice break in the day. My USPS representative (mail person) buzzes me to come and down four flights and pick it up since there is so much it won't fit in the box. It pains me to see the waste of paper, but I often go through it to learn just how clumsy or clever some marketers are. XY7.com fits in the clumsy category.

on May 1, 2006 05:50 PM
# Danny Sullivan said:

The SES shows in the US are not supposed to be giving out attendee names and email addresses. All that's given out are titles and company names of attendees. That's a long standing policy we've had. The Atlas situation Jeremy went through once before happened with email addresses that were believed deleted for a spreadsheet given to vendors were instead just hidden (and unhidden by anyone with just a little Excel savvy). That shouldn't have happened then.

As for the current case, if Jeremy wasn't at that booth, this vendor shouldn't have gotten the name from SES. The expo side isn't something I oversee, but I'm having that group check on how they did get his name.

It's possible they ran down a list of all people speaking at the show to gather up names, then hunted down some email addresses. If that's the case, it's pretty impossible to control -- but then again, they shouldn't be saying that Jeremy was at the booth.

Anyway, I'm checking on it.

on May 2, 2006 11:00 AM
# Micheal Ramsey said:

If Jeremy wanted to really clear this up instead of making a big stink out of it he would clarify that this was a postal mailing, not electronic email. Having him compare this to the Atlas situation is ridiculous. Half the posts above think XY7 sent email spam which was not the case. At 90% of the trade shows I register for (including Ad Tech) exhibitors send me "stop by our booth" postcards before the show and "thank you for visiting our booth" postcards after the show. What the heck is wrong with that? Should we all start blogs about the junk mail we get from our mailmen?
SES does not give out email addresses.
What a perfect world it would be if we all had the time to blog about spam and junk mail...must be nice.

on May 2, 2006 02:18 PM
# Leslie T. Brown said:

I have mailed separately from AOL and hope you can do something to help me remove the graffiti form of spam this XY7.com are sending.
It has completely blocked my email. I canīt read,write or send anything.
It is like a cancer that has spread through the entire system.
How are people allowed to get away with such behaviour.
Do you think I could sue them for deprivation of rights as well as prohibiting me from my work as a consultant.
Thank you in advance.

on August 29, 2006 06:50 AM
# Chris said:

I just got this today. Since I AM interested in the what he is offering AND since I was not sure if I remembered his name, I clicked on the link. Then I find out I have subscribed to his newsletter.

-----Original Message-----
From: kevin [mailto:rrmkevin@yahoo.com]
Sent: Saturday, January 13, 2007 8:29 AM
To: xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: RESPONSE REQUIRED: Confirm your request for information from web_gurus.

You are recieving this email because we may have corresponded in the past on Digital Point or one of the other webmaster forums. I buy alot of domains and web properties if you have one for sale let me know if you would like me to take you off my contact list let me know or just



Click the link above to give us permission to send you
information. It's fast and easy! If you cannot click the
full URL above, please copy and paste it into your web

If you do not want to subscribe, simply ignore this message.

Thank You,

Rapid Response Marketing LLC, 7500 W Lake Mead Blvd #9463, Las Vegas, NV 89128, USA

Request generated by:
Date: January 13, 2007 09:28 EST

on January 13, 2007 08:06 AM
# Sarah said:

I found myself swimming around late in the day on a Friday - doing some light research to close out an all around productive week. Although I am active in the online community I rarely venture into community blog sites. To my surprise I stumbled upon Sir Jeremy and felt compelled to reply. If anyone is reading this that is in the industry and wants to do some good business: spam me all your want; come to my house on Sunday morning; crash your car into mine to stop me in my tracks; whatever it takes....you, Jeremy, apparently dont want business my friend. Thats really the only way I see it.

on July 6, 2007 04:48 PM
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