I can’t claim to have a perfect business ethics track-record.
Still, my blood boils when I see examples of self-serving marketing service strategies that go beyond ineffectiveness and instead defeat the clients’ objectives, as Mark Paskell reports in this Contractor Coaching Partnership posting,
Contractor’s Website HI-JACKED, Customer Lead Sold To Others
He described how one of his clients signed up for one of the well-known lead generation services, whose representatives offered to draw more traffic ?by optimizing a website through a link through his existing site. The result: The lead generation service’s version of the contractor’s site appears above the contractor’s own site — and ?returning clients, mistaking it for the contractors legitimate site, submit their name to seek a new quote. The leads service then charges the contract for the “lead” — and (even worse) sells the client’s name to several competitors.
I dunno. ?Business ethics sometimes has a slippery slope, but this one falls so far off the edge that I’ll hold my nose and say this: If you want to use commercial leads services, go ahead, but make sure they don’t in any way interfere or connect with your website or any of your other lead development or marketing initiatives. ?Otherwise, you’ll be paying for your own repeat and referral clients ?and (to add injury to the insult), you’ll be feeding their names to your competition.