You should know that many people use free email addresses as “throwaways”. In other words, they will use this email address for a specific purpose and then simply abandon it. There are hundreds of free email clients. It is very easy to set up a free web email service. Don’t be surprised to find that one individual has fifty or more email addresses. So which is the most current one? Unfortunately, you will have to check them all. But once you know these techniques, checking each email address will be quick and easy.
You should also be aware that even the free email clients have spam/junk filters in place. Usually, the email address owner can set up trash screens. On some clients, the user can ask that everything from a certain corporate email id database domain or a certain person be sent immediately to the junk folder without seeing it. Junk folders can be set up so that any email sent there can be immediately deleted. So if someone thinks you may be looking for him, he can simply screen you out. Not all is lost…let’s look at some other ways to dig him out.
Do you know if this person has a web page of any kind? Does he sell anything online as an affiliate? Maybe he sells his own products or services? Just type in his full name in any search engine to see if you can find his web page. If he has one, he will often have a picture of himself along with other identifying information such as his email address. No luck here? Let’s keep going.
How about blogs? Blogs started out as people who wanted to write about their interests and passions and share them with others. Now, many use blogs as landing pages for products they are selling. Most blogs will show a picture of the blog writer along with other information such as their current email address. Go to any search engine and type in “free blog sites”. You will get back about a dozen or more blog sites. Search through them all! Then look at the blogs that charge a fee, such as WordPress. Sift through all those too. Still nothing? Then grab your pick, you may strike gold with this next one.
I’m sure you’ve heard the term “social networking”. Do you know anything about Twitter, Facebook and MySpace? If not, you need to take a few days and learn about these social sites. Social networking has exploded in popularity in the last year or two. Twitter, Facebook and MySpace are the biggest and most popular so try these first.
First, you need to become a member of each social network. Don’t worry, they’re all free. Once you are accepted as a member, simply type the person’s name in the site’s search box. You will usually find the search box in the top right hand corner of each page. So if the person you are looking for is a member, you will find him. Most members put up a picture of themselves and give other identifying information, so look closely. You may get lucky.
Once you’ve tried Twitter, Facebook and MySpace, go to any search engine and put in “list social networking sites” or “top 20 social networking sites”. You will find that there are about 25 or so large social networking sites. Become a member of each and search for your guy. Seems like a lot of work, doesn’t it? You are spending a lot of time, but you haven’t had to spend much money yet. So you’ve tried at least 20social network websites and you are still coming up empty?
The next thing you can do is a search for those “classmate” databases. Just search using “classmates database” or “classmates site”. Do you know the name of the high school he went to and his graduation year? If so, run a search for that high school with location. For example: “El Molino High School Santa Rosa California”. Many secondary schools now have their own websites. If you find his school site, look under the “alumni” tab and perform a search by full name and graduation year. Many high school and classmate sites will list the person’s email address, along with other identifying information.
Still nothing? Try their place of employment. Do you know where they work? Or at least the type of industry the person would most likely be working in?
If the individual you are looking for works for any large organization, it will be easier for you to find them. For example, if you are looking for Bill Smith, and you are positive he still works for Sams Auto Parts, Inc(but you have no idea where), the email name(the part to the left of the “@” symbol) will be any one of these combinations: BSmith, BillSmith, WilliamSmith, WSmith, Bill.Smith or William.Smith. In this example, we are assuming that the domain name for Sam’s Auto Parts, Inc is “SamsAutoParts” and that it has a “.com” after the last letter or “s” in this case