Like many of you who manage the website inbox for your brand and/or small biz, I am always reading and responding to questions sent by visitors to the site. Today's small biz learning moment comes courtesy of a website email that I received on yesterday. In the email, this person provided very little personal information, but said that her friends practice drills quite often in their socks. She wanted to know if I would recommend doing this and if I have ever done it. With my first read, the question seemed fairly straightforward. As soccer players, we are always looking for ways to get a better touch on the ball and I started to mentally formulate my answer. However, the lack of personal information caused me to do a quick Google on the email address. This same person happened to have started a forum discussion focusing on her fascination of walking around publicly in white socks and no shoes. Now, I would’ve dismissed this unique lifestyle had it not been coupled with a seductive profile picture, request for others to share the “dirty adventures” that they had had in their socks and a suggestion to email her outside of the forum.
So courtesy of this soccer player’s website, let me offer (4) signs that should give you pause before responding to a website inquiry that could potentially land you in a less-than-clean situation.
1. Email Inquiry form is minimally completed.
2. Sender lists a strange email address.
3. You have a gut feeling tells you something maybe awry.
4. Your Google research turns up some tidbit that ties your received email content to a darker story.
P.S. Don't forget to catch up on your Brazilian Portguese Soccer in 30 Seconds episodes. We are up to 10!