Archive for September, 2013

Consumer Team Reports on Angie’s List, Yelp and Other Review Sites

(DALLAS-FT. WORTH, TX)   Each year millions of consumer dollars are being spent based on reviews and ratings of user-review websites such as Angie’s List, Yelp and other similar websites.   The Consumer Team talk radio program will be airing a special segment featuring Jeff Blyskal of Consumer Reports on Saturday, September 28, 2013 from 5-7 PM on KRLD Radio.   Blyskal will be addressing Consumer Reports’ recently published study regarding the objectivity of user review websites.

Pete Thomson - The Consumer Team

Pete Thomson – The Consumer Team

Pete Thomson, host of The Consumer Team called the Consumer Reports study the most complete and objective he’s seen.  Thomson said, “Consumers are spending so much money as a result of the ratings and reviews from Angie’s List, Yelp and other similar websites that it’s important to understand how the sites are processing information.   As usual, Consumer Reports dug deep into each of these sites to analyze exactly how ratings are given out.”

Thomson added that the feature with Jeff Blyskal is the first of a series of segments that The Consumer Team will be doing on user-generated ratings and review sites.  Thomson added, “I’m very concerned about several aspects of teh veracity of user-generated business reviews.  First, there’s the issue of competitors or disgruntled employees purposely posting negative reviews to sabotage a business.   Secondly, internet marketing companies are often hired by small business to post fake reviews online.   And, we’ve discovered at least one website, Scambook.com, which appears to have built a lucrative business model out of charging small business a monthly fee to remove negative reviews on their site.  In our opinion, it’s online extortion.”

Regarding Scambook.com, Thomson said investigations are underway to expose the site along with others using similar tactics.  Thomson added, “Eventually the truth will come out, but when you consider the damage being done to small business across America, it’s chilling.  I’m an advocate of free speech, but this type of small business shakedown needs to be recognized for what it truly is.”   Thomson continued, “In addition to exposing the Scambooks of the world, consumers need to understand now, more than ever, that information on the world wide web should be considered carefully relative to its source and credibility.”

Scambook, according to Thomson is a good example of how investigation can yield useful results.  He added, “On the surface, Scambook looks like a real friend of the consumer.   However, when you dig down and peel back the layers of the onion, it’s very obvious what their true motives are.  In fact, there are numerous sources of intel, including BBB complaints and an investigation by WMAQ-TV in Chicago, that shine the light on the truth regarding these guys.  But again, if a consumer is only looking at their website or their marketing that shows up in a Google search, its very easy to miss the truth.”

The Consumer Team is one of the most listened to weekly consumer advocacy programs in America.   Its flagship station is 1080 KRLD which is owned and operated by CBS.    In addition to his work in consumer advocacy journalism, Pete Thomson also serves as President/CEO of McQ Media, an advertising and marketing firm based in Dallas, Texas.

 

 

Jim Poe Named Instructor for “The Richness of Life Institute”

(DALLAS-FT. WORTH, TX)   Jim Poe, founder and CEO of Texas Retirement Specialists, has been named an instructor for The Richness of Life Institute, a non-profit organization that offers adult education financial courses at college campuses throughout United States.  Poe has worked in financial services for over 30 years.  In addition to his work at Texas Retirement Specialists, Poe hosts a weekly radio program on retirement, “The Found Money Report”.   Poe is also a regular contributor of The Consumer Team radio program.

Jim Poe - Texas Retirement Specialists

Jim Poe – Texas Retirement Specialists

Commenting on “The Richness of Life Institute” Jim Poe said, “Having an opportunity to help people enrich their lives with financial education is very fulfilling.  And to be able to be part of “The Richness of Life Institute” is very meaningful to me.”   Poe added that objective, fact-based financial education for retirees is virtually nonexistent in the marketplace.  He said, “At ‘The Richness of Life Institute’ all the information we present is based on research from some of the country’s leading financial organizations.  With the right information and education, people can make wise choices with their money which means a better life in retirement.”

Pete Thomson, host of The Consumer Team and co-host of The Found Money Report, commented on Poe’s appointment to instructor at “The Richness of Life”.  He said, “I can’t think of a more qualified person to be teaching financial education than Jim Poe of Texas Retirement Specialists.  Every week when we do our radio programs, I literally take notes on many of the things that Jim talks about.  Based on the top ratings that Jim’s programs get on the radio, it’s clear that his message is resonating with the radio listeners of Dallas-Ft. Worth and North Texas.”

Response to “The Richness of Life Institute” has been enthusiastic among North Texas colleges.  After launching at The University of Texas in Arlington (UTA), the course is now being offered at Southern Methodist University, The University of North Texas, The University of Texas at Dallas, University of Phoenix and The Lockheed Martin Recreational Area.   Poe said that student feedback has been very positive.  He said, “We’ve had very favorable comments regarding the course.  Even people who consider themselves to be well informed on investing and financial matters have said that our course was very valuable.”

The course is generally offered in one classroom session per week for 3 weeks on both nights and weekends.  For additional information, including upcoming courses in North Texas, go to http;//www.richnessoflife.org  or call 888-774-4492.   The Found Money Report radio program is broadcast Saturdays at 10AM on KRLD Radio and 3PM on WBAP Radio.   The Consumer Team talk radio program is broadcast Saturdays at 5PM on KRLD Radio.

 

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