One Wrong Way to Get Business

by Meryl Evans | Category: Business, Meryl's Notes Blog 5 comments

Michelle Rafter posted a letter of introduction (LOI) from a writer who took an ego trip. Instead of an ego trip, I heard from an accountant who must be taking a trip to find blockhead clients. The email introduction implies she thinks writers don’t have business sense.

The email makes a bad first impression coming from a free email service provider using “free_lancer01” in the address and “abc efg” in the display name. (Maybe the “D” key didn’t work.) Not only that, but she sent it to two others, one of which was someone I knew. Here’s the message with only one part redacted.

Hi Dear:

You are a freelance writer and you know it needs a lot of time to make accouting records and financial statement and at same you also need the accounting knowledge. So to help you i would like to offer my services as a freelance accountant for you.

I would like to introduce my self . I am [sender’s name]. I am a proffessional accountant and studying for ACCA and CA degree. I have indepth experience in the field of accounting and auditing as I am working for a multinational audit firm. I have compiled many accounts.

You will just need to your data to me through this email and i will make accounting statements for you.

Please refer to others as well who need a virtual accountant.

Looking forward to a positive response from your side.

Best Regards.

The email ended there. She didn’t even sign her name. Sure, I’ll fork over my financing information. Obviously, she put a little effort into it because she knew I was a writer. (And so is the other recipient I knew.) That’s why I assume she thinks writers aren’t business savvy. It’s tempting to write back offering my writing services. but I’d rather not continue the conversation.

Not that free email services are bad. However, if you’re going to use it in business, at least, display your name and have a less generic ID. Back it up with a signature that reveals more information. I use Gmail more than email because spam is less of a problem. I also include a signature that links to my websites and social media profiles.

Have you ever received an unusual email introduction? What was it like? (I’d love to see it, if you have it.) How would you introduce yourself to prospective clients?


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  • Posted by Emily Suess on January 3rd, 2012, 7:44 PM

    Oh my. I once got an email from someone who wanted me to write about their so-called time-tracking software on my blog. I don’t write for free, but I was curious about the product and visited the website. Turns out the software was nothing more than a glorified keylogger.

    I wrote the poor girl back and told her that I was insulted she’d ask me to practice my profession–my livelihood–for FREE and told her, “oh, by the way, that product is shady.”

  • Posted by John Soares on January 3rd, 2012, 9:12 PM

    Meryl, I’m the other writer you know and I had the exact same reaction. I’ll eventually write a post about how NOT to approach people you don’t know, but this person did it all wrong.

    And she took a couple of minutes of my valuable time, which today meant two minutes less at the beach in Capitola.

  • Posted by George Angus on January 3rd, 2012, 11:26 PM


    Yikes that is just awful! Every once in a while I’ll get a request from someone wanting to write a guest post for Tumblemoose and the writing will be very similar. You probably don’t have to guess my response.

    Happy new year to you and I hope all is well.


  • Posted by meryl on January 5th, 2012, 8:07 AM

    @Emily, ouch. I don’t just review anything and I always tell the company it will be an honest review. I will not pump it up or fake it. If they can handle it, then no review for you! 🙂

    @John, well I turned the sour lemon into lemonade by creating a post out of it. Hope you enjoyed the beach while you were there.

    @George, sounds like the same ones I get! I’ve been fortunate to find a few diamond guests.

  • Posted by John Detlefs on January 8th, 2012, 12:46 AM

    I guess on the positive side she was having a go… clearly not a very well informed go, but she was trying.

    Mind you, a spell check wouldn’t go astray either…

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