Scam for Backlinks

There’s a new trend I’ve noticed where people send me an email alerting me to a post that they recently published. I’ve received this same email, wording much the same each time, from a variety of sites. I’m not sure if this is a new strategy for trying to get backlinks or what, but it has to the most unoriginal one I’ve seen.

Same Email Sent to Several Different Websites

Since I write for and manage several different sites, I’ve received this same exact email over and over at each site and web address. The email usually goes something like this (note that I’ve taken out the identifying info):

Hi Cherie,

Considering that I work with WEBSITE.com, I spend a lot of time on the Internet browsing blogs, and I must say that yours has caught my attention. Coincidentally, we recently published an article entitled (XXX) that I believe would draw considerable interest from your readers. If you are interested in sharing with them, then feel free to do so. Here’s the link for your convenience: (LINK TO ARTICLE).

Thanks for your time!
JANE DOE

All the links in the email are real, as is the person sending the email. The trouble is, the suggestion to “share” the link with my readers is never related to writing. When I get this same email from other sites, it’s never related to those subjects either. What’s more, I’m confused as to what they are asking. Do they expect me to share the link in a “hey look at this cool link I found!” or do I share the entire article? What exactly are they asking for?

A Lot of Effort But Still Spammy

It’s obvious whoever is behind these emails is putting considerable effort into this. My name is always included (rather than “Dear website owner”), so they do go that far in the way of research. However, they never look at what the site is about or whether the article would indeed be worthwhile. What’s more, they aren’t clear on what they want from me. Do they just want me to share the link? Talk about the email? Talk about the article?

I get these emails at this site, my dating site, friendship site, and on and on. I’ve repeatedly asked to be removed from these emails, and when I do I either get a new email (from the exact same person) the following week, or I get an identical email from someone else. In other words, these emails are as spammy as you can get.

A Huge Waste of Time

I’m scratching my head at the time put into these emails, because I can’t imagine that they get a very good response. I’ve had to work very hard in responding to these in the past to try and figure out exactly what these people are asking for. I don’t do that anymore. I should probably just delete them but I do usually ask that my name be taken off the mailing list. To me, this effort is a huge waste of time.

What I hope is not the case is that writers are involved in this as a new kind of job for spammers. Spammers used to hire writers to cram keywords up the wazoo in articles that no one cared reading. This is another form of that, and it doesn’t do the writer or the company asking for backlinks any good. It’s wasted effort.

Have you received emails like this?

Image: chawalitpix / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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