One ques­tion that we of­ten get is, “Is it pos­si­ble to be too neg­a­tive when we do neg­a­tive SEO and neg­a­tive on­line mar­ket­ing?”

Our re­sponse is: no, it’s not pos­si­ble to be too negative–so long as you main­tain your stan­dards of in­tegri­ty and hon­esty.

Let me ex­plain!

You need to hit them where it hurts. Get low, low — we’re a fan of hit­ting them where it hurts. You need to.

But the chal­lenge is, fight­ing hard, while still main­tain­ing your own in­tegri­ty. This is hard be­cause you’ll feel pres­sure every sec­ond, every mil­lisec­ond, to vi­o­late all the rules of in­tegri­ty to get them.

You should­n’t do this, for a few rea­sons.

First, it’s im­moral — and we need to be good peo­ple our­selves, so we don’t turn out like them.

Sec­ond, if you’re im­moral — then why should your clients trust you? If you lie to some­one else, maybe you would lie to them, too? And, in any re­la­tion­ship-based busi­ness, from a job to a girl­friend, trust is para­mount and must nev­er be vi­o­lat­ed.

Third, if you lie about your client, then your claims won’t hold up to scruti­ny. For ex­am­ple, if you com­plain to Yelp about il­le­gal ac­tiv­i­ty he does to get him eject­ed from the list–well, if he is act­ing il­le­gal­ly, then, there’s a high chance you’ll suc­ceed in get­ting him re­moved! But if you just in­vent­ed that your­self, then, he will com­plain, and your claim will fail un­der scruti­ny — and it will all be for nought!

Im­moral be­hav­ior, in oth­er words, is­n’t just in­her­ent­ly bad on its own; but it al­so has de­grad­ing ef­fects on your own psy­chol­o­gy, on your re­la­tion­ships with oth­er peo­ple, and makes the qual­i­ty of your work low­er (since the client can fight back much more eas­i­ly against lies than the truth). Is it re­al­ly worth it? This mar­keter says a re­sound­ing, NO, it’s not, not at all!!

There­fore, to­day’s les­son: Don’t lie; ex­ag­ger­ate.