Exposed: Instagram “Brand Managers” Hunting for Influencers Part 1: How I Was Scammed

Ladies and Gents I have some tea to spill. Now, I am not really active on Instagram because it’s not really my cup of tea, mainly because I love to repost memes, and that social platform doesn’t allow me to. However, I happened to receive a DM from a particular brand which I will not mention the name of it, yet, wanting me to promote them. I checked it out and it seemed legit, for now ( my experience has made me quite suspicious of any opportunity). Once I mentioned their brand on social media I almost immediately was receiving DMs and my follows increased significantly. I thought it was kind of strange but I was curious and inquired about a few of them. Unfortunately, I fell into a trap by one “brand” named Mariz Jewelry. I should have known that something wasn’t right when there was several grammatical errors, the excessive amount times I was called sweetie and the unrealistic promises that I was told. I was first approached by this profile named Mariz_Belles. She introduced herself as such:

Thinking this was how brands approach influencers I was intrigued, and products were free, the only thing that had to be paid was the shipping, and I will go in detail as to why the is a red flag, later on. She said if I chose 4 items and paid for shipping I would automatically become a brand ambassador to Mariz Jewelry which I thought was cool I could definitely rock some jewelry. She then proceeded to tell me what being a brand ambassador entails:

Sounds too good to be true? Well it definitely was. I sent the money through PayPal but it wasn’t until after the fact that I discovered the truth about Mariz Jewelry. The so-called “company” uses that shipping money, which cost about $30, to pay for the cheap items and in return makes a small profit off the items. When you go to the website the items are overly priced costing between $80-$95. They place those prices on the website so it would make it seem like you are receiving the ultimate deal when they give you this major discount code. After I found this information I contacted PayPal but they stated that they can’t do anything and I would have to contact the seller which I did there was no response to that but I did receive a notification that my package has shipped. After I showed her my order number which now I know is suspicious as well, she asked me if I wanted a camera and a MacBook and that was their “exclusive” offer. I declined and she wished me well on my ambassador journey. As I was licking my wounds from the loss I received another DM from the same company asking me if I wanted to be an ambassador! And then two more from the same company! Already salty that I wasted money on these scam artists I decided to tell them about my discoveries. I told them that this was all fake plus no legit brand would ever make you pay for shipping if they want you to model and promote their products. A few “brand managers” simply didn’t respond but this feisty fake profile did and this was its response:

No legit professional brand would ever be so defensive and attack a customer in that manner especially if they want future business. This encounter is only the beginning I have a few more stories like this that I will be sharing.

I would also like to caution about some red consistent flags.

1. Shipping. If a “brand manager” asks you to pay for a one time shipping fee, it’s definitely not legit.

2. Offering you 50% commission and promising unrealistic offers.

3. Sending order numbers. If you ordered from a legitimate company they would already have that information no need for screenshots and sending it to an Instagram DM.

4. Horrible grammar and consistent misspelling. No I am not trying to be a grammar nazi (this time) “jewelries” is not a word and should never be used.

5. Finally, if it seems too good to be true it probably is.

Tune in on Thursday as I will be discussing more of my encounters with these “brand managers” but this time with a clearer mind. Be careful out there!

Published by The Restless Boss Mom

Hi! My name is Naomi.I best describe myself as quirky and awkward with a good sense of humor sprinkled in. I am a self-proclaimed freelance writer. When I am not writing, I am reading, observing, learning and being a boss mom to two amazing little girls. Self-care is my motto and I enjoy discussing it on a regular basis. Follow me for mom moments, self-care tips and tricks or just to take a brief break from reality.

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