The proliferation of sham PR agencies is a mounting concern nowadays. These firms, masquerading as reputable providers of PR services, frequently lack the necessary skill set or acumen to excel in the industry. Despite their glaring deficiencies, these con artists are still able to dupe unsuspecting clients into shelling out exorbitant sums of money. As a result, it falls upon investigative journalists to shed light on these fraudulent outfits and expose them for the charlatans they truly are.
In some cases, these fake PR agencies may even go so far as to fabricate press releases and news stories to promote their clients’ businesses, further perpetuating a culture of deception and misinformation. In this extension of our previous article, Lira Brothers and the Fraudulent PR Agency of Empathy Firm we will delve deeper into the world of fake PR agencies, exploring masterminds behind the curtains & their tactics to lure in unsuspecting clients and their actions’ impact on the public and the media industry as a whole.
Dave Valentine is another mastermind in the world of fake PR, claiming to be running seven different agencies and having stakes in a few of them but unlike when we talked to one of the companies he was able to trick into giving him control— Empathy Firm– and have Lira brothers on record saying that Dave doesn’t own seven companies and doesn’t have any money. Yet there are several podcasts with Dave Valentine making boastful claims.
Seven businesses that he constantly boasts about, yet In several of his podcasts and PR articles, he didn’t mention anything other than Avadel. There are two different companies which are VHS Design Company, and Fly Valentine, with which he has a connection with based on this podcast. Even in the same video, he has another plaque on the wall behind him that has Empathy written on it with the same logo as the fraudulent agency of the Lira brothers, the Empathy Firm whom we exposed previously.
When you look at the first company (a web design company that guarantees sales within five days of the site going up), you see a $20,000 package offering SEO. If you look at the SEO power of this agency offering SEO services, this is what you get (attached, for zeros across the board).
Fly Valentine looks just as fake (see the screenshot showing zero SEO power and zero traffic to the site).
Gavin Lira said that Dave Valentine put $0 into his company in exchange for mentorship in scaling more 7 figure agencies. We can see that these “companies” are clients of each other– with Dave’s fake PR bought by Gavin and the “seen on Forbes” logo plastered across all these sites. Of course, most of these “as seen on” mentions can be bought for under $100, as I demonstrated last week via another honest PR vendor that is truthful about the bought PR they provide.
We decided to connect Andy Valentine (Fly Valentine) with David (it seems he would be the brother) to see its worth. Per Facebook, they are connected. They’re both in Fort Worth, TX – and we can see that Andy lists himself as Director of Business Development at Avadel (Dave’s company that guarantees booked appointments). His LinkedIn page also showed him working under the same title as the defunct Rethink Creative, one of many failed shell agencies put up by Dave Valentine.
There’s nothing we saw that suggests any sketchiness on his part. However, it is interesting to have a family member in a completely different industry working in a marketing / creative space.
Gavin, the founder of the fraud company, the Empathy Firm, confessed that Dave controls his company, where the founder must run all decisions by him.
Yet this company is going under because the Empathy Firm has to employ one of Dave’s friends, even though the firm cannot afford it, and the founder has to live at home, taking zero pay. Gavin mentioned the 35% ownership and control of all decisions until the company hits $2.5MM ARR.
Dave Valentine is even nefarious for bankrupting agencies.
We have even tweeted about this on Twitter, tagging Dave in it, for which we are still awaiting his reply.