In my 20s my bookshelves were lined with all the popular diet books of the day. I picked up magazines that made weight-loss claims on the cover. I researched the latest diet supplements being peddled by daytime TV hosts. I watched exercise and diet infomercials with great interest and hope.
When you want to lose weight you are very in tune to these things. You see them everywhere you turn and you think…
Maybe this is it, the thing I’ve been looking for! The answer to my weight-loss prayers. All I need to do is eat XXXX, take XXXX supplement, drink XXXX tea, workout using XXXX and I’ll be in a bikini by the summer!
And even though the last 20 things you tried didn’t work (or you gave up before they had a chance to) every new product, ad or magazine cover got your attention all over again and you’d go down the same line of hopeful thinking.
Of course when I’m saying “you” I mean “me.”
I used to do that.
Now I’m pretty immune. From losing weight to finding fitness, the past 10 years have given me a completely different perspective. I no longer buy diet or fitness-centric magazines, I don’t peruse weight loss books at Barnes & Noble, I immediately turn off any infomercial making any kind of body or weight-loss claims, and weight-loss supplements don’t exist in my world. They just don’t.
However, since I still blog in the weight-loss space I am bombarded with this junk on a daily basis. This is just a sampling of recent pitches and requests I’ve actually received.
Note: I’m removing the names of the companies and products because I believe bad promotion is still promotion.
Flat Belly Foods – Eat Your Way to a Slimmer Waist with XXXX
Actual subject of an email yesterday that inspired this post.
RE: RE: FREE SAMPLES: Do you want to feel lighter, happier, and more energized in just 10 days?
Notice the “RE:” They followed up multiple times even though I responded with my default, “Thanks but I’m not interested.”
We’d really love to send you a free package of XXXX! It’s one of our newest products and we’d love to give it to you as a token of appreciation for an awesome blog :)
This one was hard to give you an idea of what the product was without giving it away. But I just love the way they compliment to try to get bloggers to bite.
Your site http://ronisweigh.com/ appears to cater to our audience of interest and we would like to partner with you. We would like to send you XXXX starter kit in exchange for your review of it on your website and social media channels. I would like to invite you to join our affiliate program, you will earn 25% per new customer sale and 5% per existing customer sale.
Thanks but no thanks. This is one of the biggest things to watch out for with weight-loss blogs. Many times when a blogger is peddling a product they are part of an affiliate program. This particular one was for a nationally known diet company.
I’m contacting you on behalf of XXXXXX, a startup that focuses on weight-loss apparel.
I’m sorry but I can’t even… weight loss apparel??
If you were interested in my program I’d love to give you
a 70% commission of each sale you would produce.
This an example of a fellow “blogger” who created a program and then reached out to other bloggers to peddle it for them. The name of their game is maximum exposure. The more people they get to mention it, the more suckers they get to try it. So many in fact that they only have to keep 30% of the sale price to still make money!
That’s crazy. The sad thing is, they don’t even care if it works or not.
I am working with XXXX a well-known online provider of supplements, vitamins, healthy snacks and more. With the holidays approaching, New Year’s resolutions mean vowing to live more healthfully. XXXX has put together some top supplements to check out for the year ahead.
I am happy to send you samples for review/giveaway or provide you with anything further you may need for editorial consideration.
This pitch include the same supplement that stole my photos! Again, their entire business model is market saturation because they know we are going to fall for it!
I recently just read your blog and wanted to connect with you as I manage Public Relations for XXXX, a nationally acclaimed brand of organic teas and herbal infusions that has been featured on Dr. Oz, Oprah, Rachael Ray, and Good Morning America. I believe that their NEWLY LAUNCHING product line could be a really good fit for you to consider for an upcoming feature or reader giveaway.
XXXX is launching a NEW, 100% all natural wellness tea called XXXX (SLIM was in the name), which can be served as a hot or cold brew. This delicious wellness tea combines 10 of today’s most effective and talked about weight loss ingredients, including Green Coffee Extract, Raspberry Ketones, African Mango Seed, and Garcinia Cambogia Fruit. This unique combination of herbs will cleanse and detox the body, while also providing extra energy.
I needed to include one in its entirety. Not exaggerating I get 2-3 types of these emails a day! That’s how many companies are out there preying on us. And I’m not sugar coating it, that’s exactly what they do: prey.
I don’t know about you but I refuse to make these people rich any longer. They know exactly what to say to make us fall for their claims of weight loss.
My response to them personally and professionally is simply,
Thanks, but I’m not interested.
P.S. Some of you may have noticed some changes on my site. I’m now part of a new ad network that optimizes ad placement to increase revenue. Unfortunately, ads are my main source of income at the moment so I’ve been allowing them to get a bit more aggressive with layout tests. However, I turned off all ads in the weight loss, supplement and body modification categories.
This affects my income greatly (as they are the most-clicked ads on a blog that talks about weight loss and clicked ads are what generates revenue) but I can’t continue to display them in good conscious. I used to think it wasn’t a big deal; I never saw the ads as part of my site because I controlled their placement and I always positioned them out of the way and off to the side. I ignored them so I just assumed you all did as well. Now, with the more aggressive ad placements, they are intermingled with content and I see the error of my ways. I can’t be apart of the madness any longer.
If you notice any weight loss specific ads please give me a heads up (taking a screen shot would be great) as I can block specific advertisers as well.