If you have an email address, you've probably been invited to a free webinar, podcast, or video by a self-improvement guru promising to transform you into a money-making machine. It's success for dummies. I did it, and so can you!
These gurus produce very professional videos, and lots of them. They are usually a series of two or three, in which they do give you some useful information, maybe a 10-50 page Pdf booklet instant download (after supplying your email address). These gurus are persuasive and well-rehearsed. They hit all your hot buttons--tired of being a hamster on the treadmill of life, not making enough to pay the bills, not doing fulfilling work? So, you listen.
What these gurus all have in common is that they are ultimately trying to sell you their "system", "model", "blueprint", "product launch formula", software, or coaching services. They start out giving you some moderately useful freebies (the video, a pdf report), then transition you into their "offer" - an investment of $297, $497, $997, $1,997, or as much as $10,000 for their complete course, in which you'll get the really juicy how to nuggets of knowledge that will propel you into a new income bracket. If the price is high, say $1,000 or more, they'll even let you pay via 3 or 4 installments.
A few buzzwords commonly used: online "mastery" course, a "mastermind", an online "university", tansformative.
What they also have in common is that ten years ago, they were broke, down to their last dime, and needed to try something new, and quickly. They read lots of books, spoke to self-help experts, entrepreneurs, attended seminars, workshops and webinars (Where did the $ come from if they were broke?). Finally, after distilling this information, they had a revelation and created their system, manifesto, model, etc. to help others like YOU, just because they wanted to share this breakthrough. Boom -- made millions within a year or so!
OK, so just who are the gurus touting these systems and courses?. Here are a few names that might ring a bell... Brendan Burchard, Russell Brunson, Eben Pagan, Lisa Sasevich, Jeanna Gabellini, Ryan Deiss, Bill Baren, Daniel Hall, Jeremy Frandson, T. Harv Eker, Steve Harrison, Daniel Levis, Josh Turner, Callan Rush, Mike Koenigs, Ty Cohen, Milana Leshinsky, Jordan Belfort (The wolf of Wall Street), Jay Boyer, Glenn Dietzel, and Jeff Walker. I'm sure there are more.
These gurus will help you to... become a bestselling book author, find sales leads on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, create a packed workshop or seminar, run affiliate ads on your website to monetize traffic, become an in-demand speaker, run a profitable webinar, learn how to create sales funnels and "squeeze pages", do teleseminars, produce sellable information reports, crank out short e-books for Kindle and sell them on Amazon.com, sell other peoples' products online for a commission, generate more appointments, and more. If you'll just take that first step to invest in yourself with their course...
What they don't fully explain in those teaser emails and videos is that you'll need to spend a LOT of time learning their system and will need some serious tenacity to finish the course, then apply it, test it and tweak it. And, you can't modify the system--follow it exactly or it doesn't work. That's why you need their course--it's the the coaching, the hand-holding that you'll need. No problem - we've got you covered, for a price.
Now, these claims of great success and revenues by the gurus usually come with a disclaimer. Even though their step-by-step course for "dummies" (i.e. YOU) makes it virtually guaranteed that you'll increase your income by a lot, they say that their results are not typical. Heck, they've spent years honing their craft and putting in 70-hr. workweeks to get where they are. No guarantee you will be as committed, right?
However, the REAL reason you will probably not achieve their results is that, like most people, after a few weeks or months, you'll lose interest, get tired, and life happens, interrupting your training process. And the course goes on the shelf to collect dust. This is what happens with health club memberships too. They sign you up in January for a year's service, knowing that in 3 months you'll probably not be working out at the club anymore. Ditto for weight loss programs. Research also shows that most people don't finish a book they start to read, especially if it's more than 100 pages. But, they have your money already, so who cares.
Oh, one other thing. When you leave your email for one guru's video, it WILL get sold or shared. These gurus are a close-knit group. There are several dozen of them and most of them know each other. They share customer and prospect email lists and cross-promote each other's courses. They appear in each others' videos. They give testimonials to each other. Why? Because they can easily expand their universe of prospects beyond their own list to get more clients. They can also place their offer on the newsletter email list of SelfGrowth.com (the largest self-improvement website). It's available for rent. This is a list of 200,000 consumers with an interest in personal growth.
One last question: Don't you find it strange that these gurus, who all claim to be making several million dollars a year with their "system" (I'm a cynic, so can I see your tax return please?), want to share it with YOU? Why aren't they out speaking, running seminars, writing books, consulting, etc.? Why do they have so much time to produce these slick videos (and they produce a lot of them)? As one long-time industry expert told me years ago: "The big money is not in coaching itself. It's in teaching people how to BECOME a coach."
So, go ahead and sign up for that $997 online course that will change your life. Just be practical and realize that it will be much harder than you think.
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