Something interesting happened to me recently.
Ari Herstand was working on an investigative report, Music PR Company: 25% of Our Clients Are Entitled Little Brats, discussing how Manimal PR was under-delivering to its clients while charging exorbitant rates. While he was fact-gathering, I received a very strange (yet entertaining) email, but more on this in a minute.
The terrible email etiquette is what motivated me to write this article.
Normally, a full review of a company would be a great opportunity for that company to reflect upon what they are doing right, and what they are doing wrong. Maybe even approach the writer doing the research and kindly ask for feedback. I can totally relate. As companies, we sometimes have major blind spots, and getting constructive criticism isn’t always pleasant, but it is almost always helpful for improving your business.
The company that Ari was investigating made all the wrong decisions regarding situations like this. And for some reason, they decided to drag me into it. I’m not totally sure why they did this. Maybe they thought that we’d be afraid of some empty threats and pull the article, but that wasn’t the case.
In the end, I was cc’d on an email that was a perfect example of bad email etiquette. Something that nobody should ever send from their business account.
I’ve hyped this long enough, here is what Manimal PR’s Owner and Founder emailed to Ari and several member of her team with me as CC:
“Hi Ari, Hope this email finds you well. First off, congrats on your new book! I had no idea you made it in the music industry, super grateful that I know about you now. I’m definitely going to pass on your site and book to all of my industry friends and tell them exactly who you are.
[Editor’s note: the book she is referencing is Ari Herstand’s best selling How To Make It in the New Music Business, which has been adopted by most music business programs around the country for their curricula.]
I just wanted to let you know as the owner and founder of Manimal PR, that my staff and I have received several complaints from my clients regarding your borderline invasive and leading questions regarding their experience with us as well as their personal finances. Our clients are very loyal to Manimal PR so they’ve been kind enough to forward us all of your prying requests.
Manimal PR is my company and I take great pride as we are one of the leading PR companies in North America. I want you to know that my legal team and litigator are watching and documenting every email being sent to our clients.
You have made it very clear that this is a personal and biased vendetta for you based on your best friend’s experience. I sincerely apologize that P4k, Spin, Noisey and other top tier magazines passed on his content. As a publicist it is always hard to be the bearer of bad news when entitled egos are on the line, and that is the risk we take with PR. We are 100% transparent about the risk as it is in writing all over our timelines as well as invoices. We did secure him a premiere though despite all of the negative feedback on his music.
[Editor’s note: after speaking with Ari, he has no idea who she is referencing. Ari interviewed over 20 people for his report]
I’m so sorry you feel the need to blame your best friends rejection in the media on Manimal PR as a whole, but it also makes sense as we have seen the kind of tabloid journalism you are responsible for.
Anyways! I’m so excited to read what you drum up for us! I’ve put my girls AKA my staff on copy just in case you have any exciting questions for us.
PS: I read your piece on Submit Hub. That’s too bad you feel that way, Jason Grishoff is a genius. Definitely a pioneer in the industry. Did you receive some negative feedback on your music?
Nathalia Bas-Tzion Beahan
VP|Manimal PR| Manimal Films
twitter:@manimalvinyl | @MANIMALprTEAM “
Does it stop there? Unfortunately for them, no…
It takes a big person to admit and understand when they are wrong and by contrast, it takes a weak person to double down on being unprofessional and to sling mud when they’ve been accurately called out. Guess how Nathalia from Manimal responded to one of her current clients who was similarly receiving poor service and asked to be refunded, referencing Ari’s article?
If you guessed that she responded maturely and professionally, you guessed wrong.
Here is what she replied to her client:
So you go and read a piece of complete garbage that was written by a hack ego-maniac because we passed on his music and now you’re demanding a refund and threatening me with a lawsuit?
[Editor’s note: we have verified that Ari never submitted his music to Manimal. She is flat out lying to make herself look better.]
Have you read any of his other “reviews”? He trashes everyone EXCEPT himself. But I’m sure you don’t care. P4K passed on your music so It’s clearly our fault you missed an opportunity.
I also have a wonderful team of litigators and lawyers that have been following this whole defamation article as well and I have forwarded them your threatening email with all your false accusations.
We have never, ever taken advantage of you. Most PR companies charge $2000 a month with a 3 month minimum whether they land press or not. I urge you to call Girlie Action, Forcefield, Tell All Your friends and see what they tell you. We gave you a great deal and landed you press. We have it written ALL OVER our timelines and invoices that we are NOT responsible for who passes.
The article is calling us scam artists when it’s actually entitled people like you who have unreasonable demands because your music sadly does not fit the radar of the upper echelon of music journalism. You hire companies to get you press we do our job and then it doesn’t suit your entitled ego and demand refunds.
The truth is, I unfortunately should have never taken you on and that is my fault. I took a major risk thinking people would pay attention. So with that being said, send me your Paypal and I’ll be stoked to send you all of your money back. Grateful that my company and I had the opportunity to get you great press and work for free for you.
Best of luck in all your future endeavors.
This is pretty clearly a volatile and toxic person who is making the conscious decision to put feelings over both integrity and businesses success.
Not only is defamation only a fair claim to make if the information is not accurate, this is also a tremendous learning opportunity for Nathalia to make some serious improvements to her business to provide a better service to her clients. Will she do that? I hope so, although her air of entitlement is indicating otherwise.
It would be nice if companies like Manimal could take constructive criticism to improve themselves and provide a better and more valuable service to prospective clients. That would then validate their argument and their mission statement which seems like a good thing to do.
Always remember the importance of etiquette, especially email etiquette as the evidence never goes away and can harm your business in the long term.
When you think of terrible ways that a company’s representation (or even ownership in this case) have responded to things in the past, I hope this is near the top of your list.