It’s Saturday morning and I open up my email. Out of curiosity I click on “How to take a simple idea and make millions”. I am used to the sensational headlines, but I wanted to hear what new they had to say. I get on to the video and it begins. There is so much talk and talk without saying anything. This is the hype stage, where they talk about the problem and how bad it was for them and then they talk about how they overcame everything using their system. They have testimonials of others who have used and succeeded with this system. Then there is an almost 100 page sales copy to accompany that. There is still no information even after 10-12 minutes into the video. I got tired and closed it off.
These coaching and get rich quick programs really prey on people’s vulnerability. Generally, when something seems too good to be true, it is! Nothing is for free. At some point if you want to hear anything of value you have to pay for it. As one should, I do believe that people should be paid for their service or product. What I have a hard time with is the tactics used to manipulate people into doing so and sometimes there is no real product or service to begin with. Unfortunately, it is those who are most vulnerable get caught. A seasoned entrepreneur or a simply a serious one, will not be looking at these types of programs. It is true that these “gurus” have made money. It is true that the techniques they are using are necessary to work (at least some of them). However, it doesn’t mean it would work for everyone. A lot of times these gurus have large contact lists, and a large network that they have developed over the years. So they can easily leverage from that base to make money. When someone is just starting out the skill set, the mindset, the contact lists are all different and in some cases non-existent.
It is similar to those weight loss commercials. You know the ones that tell you you can lose 10 lbs in a month without changing your diet, or lose 10 lbs without exercising. People, who watch what they eat and exercise regularly, don’t need nor do they buy these products. It is those who are struggling with their weight because either they not eating well or not exercising (some may simply have medical problems) are the ones who order these products. It is unfortunate that there are people in this world who prey on the weak and susceptible to make a living. If someone is struggling to make money or lose weight, they will be desperate to try anything. If someone offers them a short cut, they will take it. The truth is that nothing is for free and there are no short cuts. Sorry. If you want something you have to work for it, whether it be money or weight loss. Using digital products, coaching programs or marketing programs that teach you how to get rich quick or using weight loss products to get healthy should NOT be your lifeline. It should not be your only strategy. Dabble if you must of out curiosity. You may pick up a few pointers here and there, but don’t expect the get the magic formula, because there is none.
What worked for one person does not mean it will work for you. If it did, then we would have a lot fit, healthy and rich people walking round. Get real advice from real mentors, people who have and are doing good work. Seek out those who are providing good products and services and learn from them. There is really no cookie cutter template for success. I am of two worlds. I am an academic who has transitioned into entrepreneurship. I realize I see things differently. As time passes my perception also changes because I learn more and understand more. As it stands today, I am exhausted with people making promises that they can’t keep and scamming people who need help the most. Here is an interesting read on the Federal Trade Commission Crackdown on Internet Scams: http://www.pcworld.com/article/113590/article.html
There are legitimate online courses and programs out there that do deliver on their promises. As a rule of thumb when venturing into anything, let common sense guide you. If it sounds too easy and too good to be true, most likely it is! Investigate further, do your research. Work smart not hard, doesn’t mean NO work! It means working efficiently. It is not that you just think and grow rich. Thinking and believing in your venture, is only half of the story. Nothing can get done if no action is taken. You can think and visualize as much as you want, if it is not followed up by action then it’s all for naught. Action is the other half of the story that turns an idea into a reality and this implies work. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty, and spend the necessary time doing what is needed to get your idea out of your head and into the world. The formula for success hasn’t changed with the advent of the internet and social media. The Internet and social media has only changed the distribution and expanded the avenues for connecting with people. In the end it is still all about providing real value to people to enrich their life experience. If what you are offering truly serves a purpose there will be a demand for it.