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SEO SCAM ALERT
Beware The 'Jump Media' Guy
Who's Really Not From Google ...
March 20, 2013

By Kirsty Gillmore
Voice Actor

I was cold-contacted on my mobile recently by a person who introduced himself as "Calum," calling from the UK number 02071839633. He addressed me by my first name, claimed to be from Google, and offered a deal for me as a voice over artist:
top ranking of my website on Google for 5 keyword phrases at the price of £99 for 30 days.
He suggested key phrases like "radio voice over" and "British female voice artist," but said I could specify my own.

It was a classic hard-sell marketing pitch:
  • he spoke very quickly,
  • talked over the top of me when I tried to ask questions,
  • threw in a few general phrases with key words to suggest he knew about my industry (he mentioned "radio voice overs" and "TV voice overs"), and
  • he claimed top UK voice artist Peter Dickson had used their service three years ago.
SMELLS PHISHY ...

I haven't had much experience with SEO, AdWords or the like, but it didn't ring true for me, especially the part about Peter Dickson. I said I didn't think the voice of X Factor (and one of the best-known voices in the UK) needed to use SEO rankings to boost his career!

I said I didn't think it was for me, that it sounded like a lot for what I'd be getting, and that I'd like to see some statistics about conversions, clicks etc. so I could judge my return on investment.

He said he'd talk to his manager and call me back in 20 minutes.

HE CALLED BACK!

I did some some questioning and research, and found a blog post from another small business owner, who had been scammed by the same company.

By the time "Calum" called back, I knew what he was offering and I declined, saying politely that I wasn't interested.

He became insistent and pushy, asking me repeatedly why I thought that, suggesting that I was missing out on a big opportunity to boost my business, and telling me that it was "only £99, which you can make back in one job, easily."

He became quite aggressive and surly, to the point where I hung up.

BEWARE THE 'JUMP'


Although "Calum" insisted he was from Google, the blog post I found, and other searches, show the number he called is listed to Jump Media, Jump Up Media or Talkingfast Ltd.

They're-UK based, but they've also approached people in Spain and the U.S.

BE WARNED: They were rude to me, but the blog post I found reports they can also be charming, and several people have been taken in.

They will ask for your bank or credit card details over the phone - if you reach this point, hang up straight away!

HAPPENED TO YOU, TOO?

Please feel free to share my experience, as they appear to target small business owners and sole operators.

And since they specifically targeted me as a voice artist, I think anyone in our community could be at risk. Voice over work can be up and down as we all know, and it's easy to be tempted by dodgy marketing schemes when the work's not rolling in.
------------------------
ABOUT KIRSTY
Kirsty Gillmore is a professional Kiwi/British voice artist, sound designer, sound engineer and voice reel producer. Born and bred in New Zealand and living in London, UK for the past 10 years (including 8 years at the BBC), she records voice overs in both a genuine relaxed Kiwi accent and a neutral British accent for a range of projects and international clients. She is a sound designer for cabaret and theatre productions across the UK. She likes good whiskey, vintage microphones and sunshine and hopes one day to be able to afford copious amounts of all three. 
 

Email: kirsty@soundswilde.com
Web: www.soundswilde.com


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Comments (7)
Oliver Mcmullen
4/28/2014 at 11:19 AM
I had this experience today from the same guy - Calum Jones. His spiel included the same comments about Peter Dickson and being able to guarantee ranking position. But while he put me on hold I looked up the company and when he came back I told him I had changed my mind. At this point I got passed to another rather aggressive character - it got so bad I simply had to hang up. I immediately contacted my bank - too late unfortunately to stop the payment being authorised. However as they have not provided any service I should, hopefully, be able to get my money back. My bank advised me to e-mail them immediately cancelling the service, requesting a refund, and telling them not to bill me for any further "services". I also made it clear I did not want to be contacted again. Finally I am on the telephone preference (no call) service so I do not know how they got away with calling me. So AVOID Jump Up Media at all costs and spread the word about these people.
Mike Harrison
3/21/2013 at 10:48 AM
I've been using the various resources of Google for a number of years, and the company states very clearly that NO ONE can guarantee ranking position - ANY ranking position - on Google, no matter how much money is involved. This does not include the paid listings that (may) appear at the top of each result page; they are not search engine rankings, they are paid ads.

So anytime anyone calls or otherwise offers a high search engine ranking, do yourself a big favor and immediately hang up. For a little more levity, you might give them a raspberry before doing so, but don't waste your time with offers like that.
Lee Saunders
3/20/2013 at 8:44 PM
Hello Kirsty,

It is possible to to contact Citizens Advice via their Consumer Helpline on 020 8185 0710 or 08454 04 05 06. Maybe they could put an end to them.

Regards,

Lee.
Kirsty
3/20/2013 at 9:18 AM
Hi Lee,

Yes, I had considered reporting them to Trading Standards but there's no clear way to do this - it seems like they deal with all consumer complaints via Citizen's Advice so I'm not sure how effective this would be. Thanks for the reminder about TPS.

Fortunately, they haven't called back, but I'll be hanging up on them straight away next time!

Kirsty
Joyce Davis
3/20/2013 at 7:59 AM
I got one of those calls in U.S. Very pushy guy. I asked some questions and nothing sounded right so I declined. Very pushy and rude. Be careful of these calls. They make it sound like the best thing you could do.
Lee Saunders
3/20/2013 at 5:19 AM
Hi Kirsty,

If the company is conducting scams, it can be reported to Trading Standards, and ultimately shut down.

If in the UK and listed in the TPS (Telephone Preference Service - http://www.tpsonline.org.uk/tps/index.html), tell them you're listed and that their call is unlawful.

Maybe try "AAarrrrghhh! The kitchen's on fire! Don't call me back!", or more simply, utter an expletive and hang up. That is a bit rude, though.

All the best,

Lee.
Roy Wells
3/19/2013 at 6:32 PM
How much is 99 Pounds in US currency?

I used to get calls all the time from some company whose reps could barely speak English, telling me to list in their directory, until one day I screamed into the phone to stop calling me. Never heard from them again.
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