Then I invite you to bear the following in mind:
Listings on directories are never 100% reliable, because the construction of each directory sites is – inevitably – limiting. Each directory allows an advertiser to put a different [and always limited] amount of information in a listing. Most advertisers don’t keep a solid administrative record of where they advertise, which results in them signing up on directories when an invitation to do so lands in their inboxes and then forgetting about their listings. Thus their listing will be visible on the directory, but the information in the listing could be years out of date. Some directories state when the advertiser was last active or logged in, which is a good measure of seeing whether the advertiser looks after her listing on that site. The statistical information that tends to be out of date most often is the advertiser’s age, physical stats, telephone number, email address, and location.
Pictures aren’t everything. They’re merely a part of the iceberg. Not even its tip. Its tip is always the advertiser’s official website. The pictures are the vehicle that connects you to the advertiser’s listing, but if you call the advertiser without reading the info on her official site, you could also be hooking on to a picture that’s years out of date – or fake – owing to what I wrote in the first paragraph. It makes common sense to visit the advertiser’s official site to see whether she’s in business and if she is, you’ll see her hopefully current pictures and info there.
Directory owners often abandon the directories. Directory sites spring up like mushrooms and are abandoned just as quickly. Webmasters often set them up in hope of getting rich quickly and when they find out that they aren’t getting rich quickly or are even making losses, they abandon them. But you who visits the directory don’t know it, and if the directory doesn’t happen to have a feature that shows when an advertiser was last logged in, you could be looking at a directory that has been inactive for years. Another quirk is that even if an advertiser has a solid administrative record of where she advertises, she may still not know about all the sites on which her ad ends up. This is because webmasters often create mirror and sister sites on which they duplicate ads from the directory on which the advertiser had signed up. Webmasters do this for two reasons: 1. to make signing up on the original directory more attractive to advertisers 2. to expand their potential of making money from the sites. If I don’t know that my ad has been duplicated to other sites, I can’t include those sites in my admin record of where I advertise, thus I can’t look after those duplicate ads. So you could again be looking at an ad with years old info….
For as long as I live I’ll have to accept the dilemma that if I advertise on these directories, men who see my ad will inevitably portray me in their minds as another one of the women who sell what they do, not as a person who doesn’t sell what others do and is far from a commodity. There’s no directory that even comes close to suiting the needs of advertisers of my caliber. But if I don’t advertise on the directories, I can have the most interesting and informative website in the world, but nobody will see it, so it won’t matter. C’est la vie….. and another reason why you should always visit an advertiser’s official site. Not all advertisers are commodities, albeit the standaparts are rare, and it always pays for you to be informed and make informed choices, especially in today’s world.
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