My wife recently received a call from someone from Bookwhirl.com asking for me. They wanted to talk about my “book” and marketing plans they could offer. My wife said she’d take their number, pass it on to me, and get back to them if we were interested. The caller was polite, spoke decent English, and didn’t push.
However, several things rang alarm bells:
- Who cold calls about online marketing anymore, if ever they did?
- The phone number used to be our landline, but I never shared it in relation to my writing business and stopped using it more than five years ago.
- Anyone offering marketing services for authors gets an automatic demerit from me until they prove differently. 99% of successful indie author marketing has to come from the author in the form of personalized contact, better writing, more books, and promotions. Anything a third party offers is probably direct mail or a spam list.
- A quick look at their website revealed ebook and self-publishing services. The (few) prices they shared weren’t Author Solutions-bad, but they weren’t great. And most were “call for a quote”…another demerit.
I was right to be suspicious. A thirty-second Google search turned up several complaints (here and here) reaching back to 2003 (!) and continuing sporadically until today. And when Lee Goldberg and Writer Beware give the company black marks, well, you know.
So…it’s just another tired old money-for-dreams scam. If they call or email you, tell them to stuff it, then hang up on them.