On Friday we asked if digitalsignage.com was being less than honest in the way that it dealt with visitors requesting quotes for digital signage solutions. Rarely has such a story received such an overwhelming response from industry stalwarts, So much so in fact that we decided to run the story again. We even have a special Guest Contribution from Lionel Tepper, Managing Director of Digital Signage Universe who gives us his views on the story.
We suggest that you read these two posts in conjunction with each other.
I guess if you spend USD 20,200 of your own money on buying a domain name, in this case DigitalSignage.com you need to do whatever you can to make money.
A couple of folks have asked us recently how the REQUEST A QUOTE works on that site – there were some questions on how impartial or independent such an online system was?
Nate Nead describes himself on the site, we quote; “As the President of DigitalSignage.com, Nate juggles his time between digital signage software and hardware sales and consulting, website development and SEO, learning about the latest techniques and technology, and writing on the digital signage blog” and even in his (supposed) full biography fails to make mention that he is National Accounts Manager at Helius, Inc. (see his LinkedIn profile here).
That might all be above board but the other day at least half a dozen folks we know received emails from Nate’s brother (Ryan) offering for the princely sum of USD 2,000 a month the chance to join a lead referral program! Ryan Nead disputes this figure in his comment here on this post and says that it was much more like USD 500. The point here however is not the amount, USD 500 or USD 2,000, it’s the deception purposeful or otherwise.
Whilst we don’t know for sure that Helius gets the first pick of leads submitted to digitalsignage.com I certainly would not be comfortable paying for leads that a competitor had already picked through AND that must certainly be a real possibility with Nate working for Helius. We reached out to Helius for comments on this story and they never replied (we will try again as we are seriously interested in their response).
Nate obviously thinks highly of himself (absolutely nothing wrong in that, yours truly does not exactly hide one’s light under a bushel either), on his own blog he writes “I also manage the largest digital signage industry portal at digitalsignage.com. This asset helps glean regular and viable leads for the digital signage industry worldwide … Such leads are sold on a contractural <sic> basis to numerous companies around the globe, producing a nice residual revenue stream for myself and my parnters <sic>. Since the site’s official launch in early 2009, it has been the recipient of over 8,000 monthly visitors”
If he only gets 8,000 visitors a month it is hard to see how he can claim to be the largest? By what other metric could he possibly so claim?