Yet Another Clever Scam Going Around
I’ve used Kijiji and Craigslist in the past for goods and services and have read up on the things to look for in bogus or fraudulent posts. However, the following fraud takes the cake with how easily you can get suckered into. And by the sounds of it, this guy (and I’m sure there are many more) is on a rampage ripping people off.
So after chatting with a new client, he apparently posted an add on craigslist for a new logo. Figured he could save some dollars by getting a freelancer or a junior designer looking for work. He received a reply, got a quote and the scammer said he’s have a concept in about 2 hours and that he’d need the payment prior to seeing the concepts, my client was happy, paid him the $75 he was charging for a print-ready logo and started working on other parts of his project.
To summarize what ended up happening, the “designer” in question, who looked legit with a nice website, great portfolio, basically stalled and ignored the client until the client finally gave up! Losing not only time but the $75!
The funny thing is, that I followed up by posting an ad on craiglist for a new logo and within minutes, the exact same person replied with the same “reply template”, said he’s need 2 hours, $75 down payment and would deliver print-ready! Sadly, I looked on Craigslist and there are at least a couple hundred logo requests PER HOUR – not only here in Canada but in the US, europe…
So… How to avoid this?
First of all, I believe that you get what you pay for and quite honestly, these days the market price for a print-ready logo/brand package isn’t more than $200-$400 and even though this is a big expense, it’s the expense that puts the “face” to the business. When first impressions will be made. You may have the best pizza in town but if your store sign, ad in the yellow pages, business card, flyers or whatever has a 1997 Microsoft Word clippart logo, then people will associate that with the pizza!
But, if you need to use one of these services, ask questions, even call them on the phone, Google their name, email and website to see if it results in any ripoff sites (www.ripoffreport.com), ask if you could contact some of his old clients. Most importantly, do not pay anything up front. Craigslist isn’t exactly where established design firms or other business will advertise. You’ll be getting responses from freelancers, amateurs or people doing work on the site. The terms should be totally in your favour.