This is not the first time I’ve received a warning email from a trade show organizer warning exhibitors about “Expo-Guide” scamming for directory listings. But this email seemed rather complete, including possible grounds for canceling the contract, so it is shown below.
First my rant:
I know there is a fool born every minute, but how do these companies survive? Are B2B marketers that stupid? Or are we so egotistical and inbound-link hungry that we’ll pay to have our name plastered anywhere?
I can claim being duped by Yahoo Search PPC was a scam because Yahoo was hiding what they were doing … but the email I got from Expo-Guide was as obvious as it was deceptive. In that sense, I’d call it spam rather than a scam.
Regardless, I appreciate when the show organizers treat this as an encroachment on their customers, and warn us.
Email from the show organizers:
It has come to our attention that the company “Expo-Guide” is currently contacting Intersolar exhibitors. In its correspondence, “Expo-Guide” requests that you check your company details against those shown in an attached order form, and that you provide further information where your company details are incomplete. The company claims that this is necessary in order to update the existing details in the exhibitor catalog, so that potential customers can easily establish contact with your company.
If you comply with this request, you will be concluding a three-year contract with “Expo-Guide” for the publication of your company details. This contract entails annual costs of Euro 1,181.00.
The Intersolar North America organizers, Solar Promotion International and Freiburg Management and Marketing GmbH hereby explicitly state that they have no commercial or contractual relationship with “Expo-Guide”. The company “Expo-Guide” was neither authorized nor in any other way prompted to contact our exhibitors for the purpose of updating information for an exhibitor catalog. If, in individual cases, any information does need to be updated, we would request that you contact Freiburg Management and Marketing GmbH or the responsible project manager directly.
If you have already signed the Expo-Guide order form and have thus concluded a contract with the company, please consider whether you wish to immediately contest the validity of your declaration on grounds of fraudulent misrepresentation. You can also terminate the contract in order to ensure that you will not be subject to a purchasing obligation in the future. In this context, we refer to the decision of the District Court of Cologne of July 4, 2007 (Ref. 9 S 44/07), pursuant to which the acceptance of an offer of entry into an online catalog can be contestable on grounds of fraudulent misrepresentation, even where the monthly costs for this service have been stated, if the presentation and wording of the offer are deceptive. We recommend that you seek legal advice.
Do not hesitate to contact us for further questions.