If you have their URL, I'd run a WHOIS on their domain and contact anyone you can...a webhost, for example...or their registrar...don't be afraid to kick and whine
If you happen to know which ISP he uses that would be helpful as well...I'd also recommend that you consider posting this company/person's name here...that'll help get the word out so this doesn't happen to anyone else.
How'd this happen exactly? Did you serve up the ad time before receiving payment?
WOW! That sucks. Well, this never happend to me, but I would try contacting them by snail mail (showing them saying that you mean business). You can most likely find out their address by searching their domains with whois.
Write something about if they don't pay up you'll expose them to everyone else, and that this isn't very business like of them.
However, I would suggest you use FocusIN, I've used them for about a year now and have been pretty happy with them (however, they provide a rich media code, and not standart banners, although you can fish out the code for a regular non-rich media banner). They also pay for CPC and CPM (views per 1000) Visit my site if you wanna see how it works.
Even though, usually I have enough advertisers to cover 100% of my inventory, for a moment there I had a lot of space available and no advertisers, so I decided to offer my current host to buy some advertising. They agreed and bought 100K banner impressions. Since, I had no other banners to rotate, I decided to start their campaign right away even though they were going to send a check only in a week or so.
After about 2 weeks, I realized that I didn't receive their check (usually, I get them in 2-3 days), so I emailed them about it. They told me that they didn't receive my invoice and were going to send the check a couple of days later.
After another 2 weeks or so, I still didn't get anything, so I emailed them again. They told me that they sent a check but can cancel it and send a FedEx instead. I agreed.
In 2 days, I received a FedEx from them (the campagn was 9/10 through, already). When I went to my bank to clear it, it was bounced. In 3 days, I received a notice fromm my bank saying that my advertiser didn't have enough money on their account to pay for the advertising.
I emailed them again, they told me that it was some mistake, since they placed $xxx money on their account just a day ago (they also said that the first check was returned to them). I requested another check and they told me that they will send it the next day (a the mean time, they gave me free hosting for the period I was waiting for my payment).
3 weeks later and guess what? I still don't have the payment.
They don't seem to respond to me on ICQ (actually, they didn't respond to anyone lately, so they aren't just blocking me) and I get no reponse by mail either....
I don't know if I should tell the name of their company because it might turn out to be extra advertising to them (to be honest, their services aren't that bad)...
What should I do? It's a pretty large sum of money and the time I spent on their campaign and stuff worth twice the campaign itself.
I think imagine is right...odds are they're a little short on cash and are sort of waiting around until they have the money to pay you, a little too embarrassed to admit to you that they don't have the money with them right now...
In the event that you decide to press charges/take them to court: make sure that you are not hosted by them. Although, they are probably reasonable people (who don't pay their bills [sounds weird, but I know a few]), yet I wouldn't put it past whoever it is to try to get revenge.
What I would do:
<LI> Switch to a new host.
<LI> After switch, contact them and request payment. Tell them you are willing to plan a payment method, where they can make small payments a month (say $100/mo). But make sure you are clear that payment needs to be complete by a certain date.
<LI> If no response is given in a reasonable amount of time, or they fail to submit a simple $100/mo, file a lawsuit in small claims court. Make sure to have documentation.
<LI> If situation gets nasty, post who they are that they may be known. (Be careful not to go too far out of your way, as it may backfire.)
<LI> Learn from this situation and be stricter on future advertisers.
Sorry if anyone thinks I'm rash, but that is what I would do.
I'm with you Richard! I can't see anyone who is not paying you on time as reasonable. How would they feel if you just chose not to pay them on time? If the table were turned I'm sure they would do what Richard suggested, AFTER CLOSING YOUR ACCOUNT!
complain to the advertiser(ie. the guy whose banners were being shown on your site. Demand an explanation from them and threaten to expose them as an accessory to fraud. They have an obligation to ensure that they are not involving themselves in criminal activity.
Am I the only one that sees a solution as "You owe me XXXX dollars and I owe you XX dollars per month for advertising, you give my XXXX/XX +1 months for the advertising or I take you to small claims court in my jurisdiction."
The way small claims court works is if they don't show up, you win simple as that. Once you have a court judgement you can place liens on their bank accounts and get your money.
I sent another letter to the email address of the guy I was making a deal with (their Marketing VP) and I got a response from another person who told me to send another invoice to the billing@*****.com ... anyway, it's been a couple of days now since I did that and if I won't receive a payment within the next week, I will probably do something more serious...
There are a couple of problems about taking this to the court:
1. The amount of money that they owe me is not that large (less than $1K - it is a lot for me, but might not be worth enough to "sue" them)
2. Me and other people who are working on our site are less than 15 years old, so it might be a problem filing a case on them.
For now the only possible solution I see right now would be to expose them at these forums ... what would be the best way to go about it?
In California, small claims court starts at $25.00 and the loser pays court costs. Your parents can file on your behalf but if your underage you'll have to figure something out because this is the first time this will happen. Not the last.
What I have learned is that you need to have something signed by them, whether it is a contract or an agreement to pay. This is an extremely easy way to show them that if they don't pay, you can take them to court, and on the basis of the signed contract--they are legally obliged to make the payment(s) specified in the contract.
It is always tough the first time this happens. But I can guarantee that you learned your lesson and by taking the correct legal steps beforehand next time, you won't have nearly the amount of trouble.