When iwillteachyoutoberich readers miss the point

Ramit Sethi · January 16th, 2008

Just got this email:

My name is XXXXX XXXXXX and I am the Senior Marketing Analyst with []. I have looked over your blog…and I think there is an opportunity for the both of us. I would like to offer you a partnership with our Company. The partnership is 100% FREE and the link to sign up is at the bottom of this page….


I see that you write a lot of articles about credit cards, you even have one up today “Free Pepsi for signing up”. If you were to tie the link to the application of that card in the article, let the $$$ flow in.

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He is talking about this post — the one where I mock ridiculous credit-card offers.

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  1. I love it when people see what they want to see, which happens most of the time. Idiots.


  2. I take offense. Those people aren’t readers – they’re spammers!

  3. Dustin Coates

    I think calling that guy a “reader” may be a bit generous. 🙂

  4. Michel Savoie

    I agree with Clare… I think that’s the equivalent of semi-intelligent spam.

  5. What is the real deal with these “partnerships”? I’ve got an acquaintance who’s actively pushing for a 15 minute meeting so he can show me how to be a partner and make lots of money selling stuff over the internet.

    I looked at his website and there’s nothing there. You click on one link and it takes you to another page of many links on a similar topic.

    Is this some type of pyramid scheme?

  6. Ramit Sethi

    Scott: Yes.

  7. Dude… You might be missing the point. I bet your readers will actually sign up for one of those cards of you stick a link in there. It is an actual credit card, and they are regulated by the FTC. It is like getting some free money, even if the gift horse is a troglodyte, don’t look it in the mouth.

  8. Mrs. Micah

    I love it! Lol. Apparently we’ll do anything for Pepsi. 🙂

    I agree with Dustin.

  9. Jonathan Lane

    Too funny that this person would try and convince you to try and link back to the credit card company so they can get sign-ups, when you are pretty much bashing the company with that post.

    “Look at these fools, trying to lure unsuspecting people into their shitty credit card offer with free trinkets! Interested? See here: http://…”

    Yeah, likely….

  10. I think its funny because he cited that example. Which shows he clearly does not know anything about your blog. If he said something more along the lines of how you can link to low fixed rate cards or something that might be more useful to your readers then he might have been on to something… But you probably would have not been interested, and I would not have gotten a laugh. This was clearly a more effective message 😉

  11. Blair Christopher


    I wouldn’t necessarily say this was actually a person, or at least not a reader. Most likely it is a spammer like Clare mentioned. Someone not loyal to your site at all, just scouring it to find the relevance and sweep you up into their campaign. But I appreciate you posting this to make the idiocy even more transparent. I would have just posted the person’s name and email address so they would get their own “come up-ins”.

    Loyal reader,

    PS. Didn’t comment on this before, but I’m glad you are going to bring someone in on Real Estate finally. Now, if only you had someone to advise me BEFORE I bought a home. Oh well, now I know the ins and outs from experience.

  12. Frugal Dad

    I guess the term “barking up the wrong tree” doesn’t mean anything to them. I constantly receive the payday loan/credit repair advertising requests. Somehow I don’t think that exactly fit on a site about paying off debt and living frugally.

  13. Is this guy for real?

    A Senior Analyst who refers to his Company as a proper noun? Who advertises things as being “FREE?” Awesome.

  14. Some people really are shameless. How could they possibly have READ anything on this blog and think that “offer” would fly with anyone? Clearly, they didn’t. It was a shotgun “spam” approach as others have said…what an idiot. Can’t people find a more productive use of time/way to make a living than just randomly spam sites with stupid offers?

  15. James Urquhart

    Sounds like a typical spam mailing to me. What is the world coming to?

  16. Brooke (Dollar Frugal)

    This guy is insane. It sounds like spam, but he actually lists one of your articles. So, that means he actually took the time to read through your site, but he didn’t get it. Sigh.

  17. The Smart Investors

    That totally hillarious man! these suckers need a kick.

  18. LOL! Ramit, I got the same offer yesterday. Here was my response:

    I appreciate the offer but I think I’ll pass.

    I absolutely hate all the blog posts on the internet promoting various credit cards with links to without the blogger mentioning that they make money off the application. It’s misleading to the highest degree.

    AllFinancialMatters – A personal finance blog

  19. Man who made the offer

    This goes out to Ramit and Crew

    I assure you that is was not a spam effort, it was an actual effort to become partners with

    Now, with that being said, I understand that you are mocking the acquisition of credit cards with that article. Its a great picture indeed, however the opportunity to make money still remains, regardless of the hilarity.

    There are all kinds of pros and cons to credit cards, who is to say you cannot incorporate certain cards for certain articles. The humurous tone you write with is a great way to keep people interested in an otherwise uninteristing topic…….

    I wish you would rethink the offer. The blogs do extremely well, and just based on the feedback from the post today, IWillTeachyoutobeRich would be no exception.

    Glad to see I got a post on the homepage


  20. @ Man who made the offer: I hope you realize that your comment only serves to reinforce Ramit’s point… that you are missing the point! Why would a website that promotes personal financial responsibility enter into a partnership with a “Company” that hawks credit cards? It undermines the credibility of the entire site. Not that you would know anything about credibility… you hawk credit cards.

    @ chris: Judging from many of the comments, I doubt that very many readers would sign up for that card. Again – it comes back to credibility.

    P.S. – Am I the only one who thinks of ‘Heroes’ when I read the sentence “I would like to offer you a partnership with our Company.”? Ramit, do you have some sort of superhuman mutant ability that you’re not telling us about?!

  21. Ramit Sethi

    Ryan, I wouldn’t be opposed to featuring a credit-card offer for a card I really believed in. But as you can see, the problem is this is all about money. No value, just money.

  22. Ryan:

    From what I gather, you argue that there is no good relation between Credit Cards and Personal Financial Responsibility, and I dont believe that to be accurate.
    I think you are generalizing credit cards as “bad” when they can be very helpful.
    Granted, when they are overused, and mishandled, they can cause severe financial strain on an indivdual, but I think this can be said about most things in this world.

    I am not saying that Ramit should simply post cards and tell people to sign up for them, there is no point to that statement, it does not work for his Blog, his beliefs.
    What I am saying is that credit cards help a person who is financially “strapped”. Educating people on what card would be right for them is not “evil” it is responsible. The VALUE is there I assure you.

    BTW, I take humurous offense to the word Company in quotations.

  23. It’s interesting to see the comments posted. It would’ve been better if an explanation on who exactly would benefit from these credit cards.

  24. Ramit, fair enough. I didn’t mean to speak for you.

    I just wrote up a whole response to the Man – and then I realized that it was petty and futile to argue with him. Instead, I will take humorous offense to his email and subsequent responses.

  25. Clare wrote: “I take offense. Those people aren’t readers – they’re spammers!”

    Clare – My thoughts exactly.

    Ramit, I very much enjoy nearly every post, but I have to say, the title of this entry itself sounds pejorative (someone new to the blog could read this post’s title and think you have a low opinion of your readers, as in “there go my stupid blog readers – missing the point AGAIN!”

    I would suggest you consider changing the post title from
    “When iwillteachyoutoberich readers miss the point” to
    “One iwillteachyoutoberich reader who missed the point”