The referral program website “Referral Key” is a spam
I hope many of you have come across this site – Referral Key . This site declares that it provides a unique online software which helps businesses to get valuable and genuine business referrals. Many of you might have also received invitation from your LinkedIn connections for this referral program. I also received the same.
As it was a totally new, so I decided to go for a brief research on Google about it. At first when I typed the word “Referral Key”, Google shown suggestions like “Referral Key spam”. So as a general human nature, I tried that suggestion ,first. There I found a link to a discussion on LinkedIn , where many users have specified that they were exactly in my “shoes” , before. But after going through Referral Key’s functionality, they figured it out as spam. I have checked some more discussions, like on Jeffrey Donenfeld’s Blog. He also looked not so satisfied with the referral software.
Finally, after doing some brief background research , I decided to go for undergoing a test drive of the Referral Key, myself. I clicked the link sent inside the invitation from one of my LinkedIn connection. It opened the registration form. The registration process was fine, but the first unhealthy thing which clicked my mind was, that it asked me to submit my LinkedIn connections details as CSV file, which I have downloaded from my LinkedIn profile (link provided on the registration form). I had uploaded the same on Referral Key and clicked all yes and affirmative buttons. Then a notice came up that once my invited LinkedIn connections join this referral program, then my profile will get a badge of social networker and my profile will be promoted across the Referral Key site.
Just after that when I logged into my email account, which was connected to my LinkedIn profile, I found lots of emails (both ,automated and personally sent). The one which were personally sent, were asking me that what is this all about and why am I “Spamming”. Now I was totally confirmed that this is an annoyingly spammy referral software. It can and may also harm my online reputation.
I also came across the fact that it is not fully FREE, which they show up. Once you get 3 referrals, they will ask for joining any of their plans for getting further referrals.
After all these findings, I strongly recommend all readers not to get fooled by this spam referral software. If you want to use social network in business growth, better to go for the best networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn,etc.
Readers please share your opinions and experiences which may help all.