Everything that sucks about the SEO industry in one email – but you have to laugh!

A couple of days ago Leapfrogg received an email. Not just any email though. An email from a search ‘consultant’ based in London. The most hilarious, yet alarming thing about the email is that they were kindly offering to provide Leapfrogg with search marketing consultancy. Now I really have seen it all! A little known ‘search consultancy’ offering another search consultancy, search consultancy! ‘Genius!’ Its the equivalent of trying to sell ice to an Eskimo!!

I am going to save them the embarrassment by excluding their company name. I would love to have screamed it from the rooftops as a company to avoid like the Bubonic plague but as tempting as it is I will remain professional.

This email should anger me as it represents all that is wrong with the search marketing industry. However, so much about this approach made me laugh that I simply had to share it, mainly as a word of warning but also because of the sheer stupidity of it all. Did this person not have a good look at our site, figure that we may know just a thing or two about search, and ponder that ‘maybe it would be a bit silly to approach these guys!’. She went to the effort of running a link check so this is far from being a completely automated approach.

So, here comes the email…

(By the way I did send an email back – you can see my response below)


Firstly, let me introduce myself as a search consultant for XXXX.

I came across dev.leapfrogg.co.uk today while looking for a website with unique content that would make a good candidate for better search engine rankings.

I have taken the liberty of performing a complimentary link analysis for you to check how well your site is doing at the moment in terms of inbound links, which are a critical component of good rankings on Google.
We have used 2 different link checks for your website – Google.com and Alltheweb.com. Here are your results:

· According to Google.com you have 8 incoming links
· According to Alltheweb.com you have 452 incoming links
[It is very common for a difference to show between these two numbers, I will be happy to explain why if you wish to hear more]

The reason that having a decent number of links from other trusted websites is so important to search engines like Google is that they are a bit like votes for your site. The better your inbound link profile, the higher your website is likely to rank on Google and the more visitors / return on investment it will bring you.
To improve your link profile and have your website rank highly on the search engines for your keywords, we are able to offer you a search engine promotion service that sources links from other websites with a view to building your link authority. Additionally, and of equal importance, we will examine the architecture of your website and provide advice to ensure it is correctly set up for current search engine algorithms.

We aim to achieve Top 10 rankings for your website on the major search engines and back your results with our unique Performance Agreement that refunds your monthly payments should this target not be reached. Specifically:

Uh oh…here comes the guarantee!! BP

We will work to achieve first page results for your website across the three most important search engines (Google, Yahoo, MSN).

The search terms we use will be chosen by you and designed to bring you the maximum level of purchase-motivated traffic possible.

If we cannot achieve first page rankings for your site we will refund your money.

If we cannot keep your website in the Top 10 we will refund your money.

No-one can promise Top 10 rankings with absolute certainty. What we are able to do is protect your investment.

OK, I am confused now – are you guaranteeing me top ten results or not? BP

We are confident our methods work because they are currently achieving first page results for many of our existing clients operating in some of the most competitive industries on the Internet. Our success rate for companies targeting difficult, high-volume search phrases is currently over 90%.

As our client, you will be kept fully updated on your campaign progress, with regular ranking reports that show you exactly how your search terms are doing on each of the search engines.

Superb, because after all rankings are the measure of a successful campaign. Who cares about stats, ROI and all that crappy stuff ! BP

You will also have the benefit of having a personal search consultant assigned to look after your campaign. Your consultant will be in regular contact to discuss how your campaign is going and will be on-hand to answer your questions whenever they arise.

Providers of search engine marketing services are only as good as the results they achieve for their clients. I would encourage you to check the results we have achieved for our existing clients yourself and would be happy to provide you with a list of contact details so you can check their results and ask them about their general experience with us.

I had a look at the terms you claim to have achieved top ten positions on Google for…Wow…impressive!! My only issue is that you are not willing to tell me who your clients actually are! Why is this? BP

For more details on the service or to be put in touch with some of our existing clients, please call me on 123456789 (if phoning from outside UK please see below) or email XXXX. Additional information can also be found at our website XXXX.

Best Regards,

I responded with the following request:


I would be interested to know how you would go about getting us to number one on Google for the term ‘Muppet’.



Needless to say I didn’t get a response!

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