All the Natives Aren’t Friendly
You are doing great! You are getting close to being at the very heart of this Internet jungle and you have survived lions, tigers, bears, oh my and sneaky snakes, cannibals and poisonous plants to boot. You are learning to live and thrive in this jungle.
By this time you have likely met some of the natives. Most of them are nice, polite, helpful people. You have even come to be friends with some of them. You might even have formed, in not friendships, at least relationships with some of your toughest competitors. That isn’t the least bit uncommon out here in the Internet jungle.
It’s been said that, ‘Politics makes strange bedfellows’, it could be said that the Internet makes for even stranger bedfellows! You may have seen joint venture agreements made between fierce competitors who sell the very same products to the very same market. It happens. When the details of a joint venture agreement can be worked out so that each partner can equally benefit from that agreement, joint venture agreements between competitors are not all that uncommon.
It is also true that there really are gurus that live and work in the Internet jungle. These living, breathing gurus are real experts in their Internet marketing fields of endeavor.
There are experts in article and ebook writing and marketing. There are experts in viral marketing techniques. There are experts in the writing of effective sales letters. There are many real experts or gurus that often offer courses, seminars, teleseminars and webinars in order to teach those who can pay for the information how to do certain things and do them very well in the Internet marketing jungle.
There are Fake Gurus
However, just because somebody claims to be a guru or an expert doesn’t make them a real guru or expert. Sometimes that claim just makes them another one of the not-so-friendly jungle natives.
The think about signing up for courses, seminars, teleseminars or webinars is that there is not recourse to getting your money back if all you get is a bunch of stuff that anybody would know who had been in the Internet marketing arena for more than fifteen minutes.
You can’t say, ‘They didn’t tell me anything I didn’t already know. I want my money back” and expect to get your money back. That isn’t going to happen.
The best thing that you can do before you sign up for any instruction is to check out the instructors or speakers who will be presenting information to you. Run a check on them by plugging their names into the Google search box. This won’t tell you everything you need to know, but it is a place to start.
Ask other marketers if they know who these so-called experts or gurus are and if they have ever taken a course or attended a seminar, teleseminar or webinar where these same gurus or experts were the instructors or speakers.
Who Make Fake Claims
Remember that anybody can CLAIM anything to be a fact…but that doesn’t make it a real fact. An ‘expert’ can TELL you and the rest of the world that he charges $1000 to write a single 300-400 word article. Maybe he does CHARGE that…the question is whether there is anybody who actually PAYS him that much for a single article. It isn’t likely.
Still he can claim that as a fact and offer to teach you how to write articles that you can charge $1000 each for. Of course, in order for him to teach you his wonderful article writing secrets, you will be required to pay him for this information and to pay him very dearly indeed. He needs it…he isn’t making any money writing articles. He isn’t one of the friendly natives.
P.S. You aren’t going to make a thousand bucks for writing a single article. In order to make that 1000 bucks you are going to have to write a whole BUNCH of articles at about $4 or $5 each….if you are a very good writer, know the rules of Internet article writing and are very lucky.
Another common fake claim by Internet jungle natives who are of the not-so-friendly variety, is the ‘I’m making boat loads of money’. They CLAIM that they are making…oh I don’t know….$100,000 a MONTH by using their fool-proof money making system.
Remember….anybody can CLAIM anything as a fact. There are a lot of things that can slip past the ‘Truth in Advertising Act’ in the Internet marketing jungle.
Okay…think about that for just a minute. If they were in fact making $100,000 each and every month with their fool proof money making system, why is it, do you suppose that they are willing to teach you (and anybody else that has the price of a ticket) how to compete with them? If you had found out how to locate the pot of gold at the end of every rainbow, would you sell that information at any price? I don’t think so.
The ‘claim to fame by association’ is another one of the ploys used by these unfriendly natives. They claim that they are associated with some of the real gurus of Internet marketing or that they have very close personal relationships with famous or powerful people and that association makes the information that they are attempting to sell you very, VERY valuable.
They do not claim that they actually have the credentials that make themselves gurus but they are associated with people who are true gurus or are in a position to open doors or influence people on your behalf.
Now I am not saying that knowing influential people isn’t an asset. It certainly is. It is not, however, much of an asset to ‘know someone who knows someone’. That certainly isn’t a privilege worth paying for.
……….And Wild Promises
Have you ever seen those crazy advertisements for seminars or courses that say something like, “I guarantee you that I can teach you how to get the number one spot in Google search results!” That one really makes me want to laugh!
It’s all in the way an advertisement is worded, folks. You were NOT promised that you would actually HAVE the number one spot in Google search results….only that you would be taught how to GET the number one spot in Google search results.
I can teach you that right now in only one sentence. Get more clicks and have more links on the Internet than your competitors. That’s pretty much it. The trick is HOW to get more clicks than your competitors and HOW to get more links on the Internet than your competitors. The devil is always in the details….those pesky little details!
There are many tried and true techniques to raise your PR (PageRank) but even when you know what all of those techniques are and are diligently applying all of them, the odds against getting being number one in search results fall somewhere between one and a snowball’s chance in hell.
PageRank is one of those things that you can just mention to a very seasoned, very well-established REAL marketing guru and cause him to begin to drool uncontrollably. It’s what every body works for and what every body dreams of.
A PageRank of 7 is considered to be practically sacred ground. Nobody…but NOBODY can ever guarantee to make you number one. Don’t believe it! Don’t buy into it!
Yes, you do need to learn all of the techniques and how to use them to increase your visibility on the Internet. That information is actually available for free if you are willing to look for it.
If you aren’t willing or are unable to seek out the free information on the Internet, you can take courses, attend seminars, teleseminars or webinars that are given by legitimate gurus on article and ebook writing and marketing, posting to blogs and forums, banner exchanges, joint ventures and other techniques that can be used to help you raise your PageRank and your visibility. None of these legitimate gurus will ever promise to teach you how to be number one. They know better.
Yet another wild promise that some of the unfriendly Internet jungle natives will make is, “I will teach you how to get lucrative joint venture deals!” Hmmm….well there really are lucrative joint venture deals out there on the Internet. There isn’t any doubt about THAT fact….you getting them is another story.
You will notice that the advertisement doesn’t say that you will in fact HAVE a lucrative joint venture deal if you take the course or whatever is being offered. It only says that this (maybe) guru will teach you HOW to get one for yourself.
The phrase, joint venture, is another one that causes well-established Internet marketers as well as brand new Internet marketers to get all shivery and weak in the knees. Everybody knows that a joint venture is the fastest and easiest way to make a lot of money, build a large opt-in list, to get established or become better established in the Internet jungle.
Like high search engine rankings, joint ventures are the darlings of the Internet jungle. They are the gold rings….the prizes most sought after….something everybody wants.
You can get a joint venture. I am not saying that this is a prize that is out of your reach now or that will always be out of your reach. I AM saying that getting a joint venture deal is almost as easy as catching that golden ring on the merry-go-round was when you were a child. It can be done…but not without a lot of stretching and practice.
Here are the hard cold facts about getting your first joint venture. In order to get an established Internet marketer to join you in a joint venture, you will most likely have to give him or her 100% of the profit on a product that you have produced or had produced for you. This product will have to have a value of at least $100 to attract a marketer who has a substantial opt-in list. The only thing that you will get out of your first joint venture, most likely, is a big increase in your own opt-in list…..which is very, VERY valuable but the bank won’t credit it to your account.
Now, you do need to know how to approach established Internet marketers. You do need to know how to structure joint venture agreements and how to build squeeze pages whereby you capture the names and email addresses for your own opt-in list.
If you work hard, follow the rules and pay your dues, someday you will be that well established marketer who will GET 100% of the profits but it won’t be today…or even next week.
They Will Offer to Show You the Shortcut
Have you ever noticed that every time you have ever tried to take a shortcut, it always ends up taking longer or costing you more money in the long run? It seems like that is always the way a shortcut works out…at least for me.
One of the shortcuts that these less-than-friendly natives will offer is a way to get an opt-in list with out having to do all of the heavy lifting. They say that they can show you a shortcut…a way to get an opt-in list the ‘easy way’.
“Oh, no”, they say. “You really don’t have to offer a nice incentive. You don’t have to do all that work…..like writing and marketing articles and ebooks or posting to blogs and forums. There is an easier way….and I just happen to have it handy. For a small price it can be yours.”
Since building an opt-in list really does involve a lot of ‘heavy lifting’ so to speak, you might well be tempted to take the shortcut that they are offering.
Here is a little piece of very good advice. Don’t!
The shortcut they will be offering to show you for that ‘very small’ price is to BUY a list. You will see advertisements all over the Internet for companies who will sell you an opt-in list that they say contains names and email addresses of people who have already opted in….some of them twice.
The monetary cost of these lists is usually anywhere from 3 cents per name and email address on up to and about 30 cents per name and address. The price mostly depends on whether the lists contain names and addresses that are of the single opt-in variety or the double opt-in variety.
This is a tempting shortcut but it is also a situation where you need to take a deep breath, a giant step backward and take a good clear look at exactly what you will be getting if you buy a list.
Here’s the very first question that you need to ask yourself. How often do you opt-in to a list on a website…any website? Is your answer:
Next Question: Why do you opt-in to a list?
(a) because you want the incentive gift that is being offered?
(b) because you want the information that you will receive?
(c) because you are really fond of getting a lot of emails from people you
Final Question: Why do you think other people opt-in to lists?
(a) They want the incentive gift that is being offered?
(b) They want the information that they will receive?
(c) They just really like getting lots of email from companies and individuals who are trying to sell them stuff?
The one thing that is important here is that opt-in lists are NOT made up of just names and email addresses. They are made up of real people who are very much like you. When emails are sent they are received in the inboxes of real honest-to-goodness live people.
Do you know a single solitary person who would deliberately allow their name and email address to be added to a list of names and email addresses that would be sold to anybody with the price to buy them? Me, either….and I know a few ditzy people…ditzy, yes, crazy, no.
A determined identity thief can get enough information with just a legitimate email address to accomplish his evil purpose. People know that. They do NOT give out their names and email addresses for the purpose of having them sold to others and they sure as heck don’t agree to it TWICE!
Do you want to know who might well give out their names and email addresses knowing that they are to be sold to others? I can tell you that. They are members of CAN-SPAM watch dog groups or those who are deeply involved in consumer protection or who want to report spammers and possibly collect the rewards.
The fact is that there is absolutely no such thing as an opt-in list that you can buy. The people who opted in did not opt-in to YOUR list. They opted in to someone else’s list.
Unless you can prove that the emails that you send are sent only to those people who have opted in to YOUR list, you are violating the CAN-SPAM act. Violations can cost you the big bucks.
Another shortcut that you might be offered by these Internet jungle natives is automated article submission soft ware. Now, let me be clear. Some of this automated article submission software can be of some help.
Submitting articles and ebooks to article banks and ebook repositories is one of the most time consuming of tasks. It is very tempting to look for a shortcut to this process
The biggest problem with using automated article submission software is that most of the major banks and repositories will not accept submissions that are made with such software. They require that each submission be made by hand and individually in order for them to be listed on their sites.
One more shortcut that may be pointed out to you by these not-so-helpful natives is FFA’s. Usually the native that will be showing you this particular shortcut owns the FFA page.
Oh, wait a minute. Maybe you don’t know what FFA means. FFA is an acronym that means ‘Free For All’. Whoa! Sounds like a lot of fun, doesn’t it? It’s not that kind of free for all.
An FFA is usually set up as a link on a website. On this page, anybody who wants to can put in an advertisement for their website (something like a classified ad)….supposedly for others to see, be impressed by and visit. That is not exactly what happens, however.
What really happens is that you have opted in to a list and your inbox is about to fill up to the point of overflow everyday into the distant future. The only positive thing that you will get out of this shortcut is one link for search engine spiders to count and the negative thing you will get is an inbox full of sales letters for everything from soup to hay.