Do People Really Believe They Can Get Rich … Overnight … Without Working … Using Some ‘Secret’ Method or Technique?
By Jim Straw -
Which enlarges to…
Do all ‘opportunity seekers’ … even me, when I was just a business tadpole … begin by believing in the unbelievable? — Are we all ‘gullible’ until our experience teaches us the facts of business life?
If we weren’t ‘gullible’ and we didn’t respond to the ‘get-rich-quick’ ads, would we ever have graduated to the ‘real’ businesses in which we have made our fortunes?
How many people begin by reading and responding to the bullstuff-ads and then give-up after finally realizing there ain’t any free lunches? — How many quit? — How many graduate to a ‘real’ business?
Can the absurdity of the get-rich-quick, bullstuff-ads be justified or, at least, defended?
Does the end justify the means? — Is it acceptable to use high-powered, bullstuff-ads to locate the ‘real’ would-be entrepreneurs, then nurture and culture their ambition? Or, by so doing, do we kill-off the entrepreneurial spirit of too many who would have, otherwise, become successful and productive elements in our society? — Does the possible good outweigh the potential damage?
In order to find an answer, let s look at …
The Victims Of The Bullstuff Ads
Over 90% of these people have no experience in the business world whatsoever. The only perception they have of business is what they have seen depicted in the movies and on TeeVee, or read about in trashy novels. They’ve read about people who have become fantastically wealthy overnight and thrilled at stories of Howard Hughes, Ted Turner or Bill Gates. But, they still have no earthly idea what it s all about.
Statistically, these people have an average annual income in the range of $17,000 to $21,000.
About 50% of them start with the best of intentions … a ‘wage earner’ needs to add a few bucks to his take-home pay to buy a few niceties and extras for his wife and kids – or – a ‘homemaker’ dreams of bringing in a second income to relieve the pressures on her husband and give the kids a little extra – or – a ‘burned-out executive or middle management type’ just wants to find a way out of the rat-race.
The other 50% are motivated by the economy alone. — Money is their only goal. (Later I m going to tell you more about these people and the affect they have on the market.)
No matter what their motivation, all of these people become ‘opportunity seekers’ looking for a way to make their dream come true.
Most ‘opportunity seekers’ … over 80% … even if they start with the best of intentions, don t really want another ‘job,’ although that s the only way they have ever made any money. — They really don t want to ‘start a business’ either, because that would mean quitting their ‘job,’ leaving their comfort zone, taking a risk, and giving-up what income they currently have.
For those reasons, they disdain any opportunity that appears to offer a job of work, or requires actually starting a real, day-to-day functioning business. — In their logical left-brain, they know there ain’t any free lunches – but – their emotion-charged right-brain has been convinced that ‘free lunches’ may exist … if they only knew the ‘secret.’
Can we really blame them?
Over the years, less-than-knowledgeable journalists, dilettante novelists, superficial screen writers, socialistic government agencies, and other assorted fools have led them to believe that business is a zero-sum game … meaning every time a business takes in $1 in revenue, someone else loses that $1. — A totally illogical premise espoused by people who have never ‘produced’ anything of real, tangible value … negating the value-for-value exchanges (barter) upon which the real business community was founded.
Is it any wonder these naive ‘opportunity seekers’ become easy prey for ‘bullstuff advertisers’ who promise they can Get Rich … Overnight … Without Working … Using Some Secret Method or Technique?
After all, since they have been convinced that business is a zero-sum game, all they have to do is learn the ‘secret’ way to make some other sucker lose money to them. — They have never been taught the concept of value-for-value exchanges, therefore, all they have to do is come up with a way to separate the other guy from his hard-earned money … like the ‘bullstuff advertiser’ separated them from their money.
But, blaming these naive ‘opportunity seekers’ for their participation in ‘bullstuff opportunities’ is a little bit like blaming the mugging-victim for being robbed – but – in the case of physical robbery, the victim doesn’t usually turn around and try to rob other people to recover what they lost.
In today’s economy, only about 20% of ‘opportunity seekers’ will even consider offers that appear to offer a ‘job’ of work or an opportunity to ‘start a legitimate business. ‘
What about the other 50% who are motivated by the economy alone where money is their only goal?
Every time the U.S. economy is “top heavy” … the stock market making new highs, unemployment and interest rates making new lows, and the news media filled with feel-good stories about the economy … the number of ‘bullstuff advertisers’ seems to expand exponentially. — Then, when the economy equalizes, the number of ‘opportunity seekers’ drops off rapidly and dramatically, putting the ‘bullstuff advertisers’ out of business. — Here s how it happens…
During a “top heavy” economy … like today … the top 20% are rolling in the dough. — The bottom 20% are going broke … evidenced by an ever expanding bankruptcy rate.
In-between, 60% of the economy is stagnant … working their jobs, keeping the bills paid, living a relatively stable existence from day to day. — From this group comes the “economically motivated” opportunity seekers.
These people aren’t really interested in ‘bettering’ their existence.
They just want to get their share of the economic-boom they’ve been reading about … maybe even get rich, if they don t have to ‘work’ for it. After all, every day the journalists are telling them how ‘average people’ (just like them) are making millions investing in the stock markets – or – people who s retirement accounts were now worth millions of dollars because their fund managers had ‘wisely’ invested in the stock markets.
Unfortunately, these people don t have enough money to invest in the stock market … or, even if they have the money, they don t want to take the time to learn ‘how’ to invest … and their employers don t offer any retirement plans to make them rich, so they become ‘opportunity seekers,’ looking for cheap and easy ways to buy a ride on the gravy-train. — In other words, they are looking to ‘invest’ in a cheap opportunity … like the Big Boys do in the stock market … and let somebody else do the work, so they can get their share.
As the “top heavy” economy persists, the economically motivated opportunity seekers make up a larger and larger percentage of the market. — And, since they really aren’t looking for anything that smacks of ‘work,’ or ‘starting a real business,’ they almost willingly play the zero-sum game of business they believe exists … losing their money to the ‘bullstuff advertisers’ who, they imagine, will eventually teach them how to win the game too.
With the increasing market universe of economically motivated opportunity seekers, the number of ‘bullstuff advertisers’ also increases … giving even more credibility to the zero-sum game of business they espouse.
Hide & Watch!
When the stock market takes its next BIG plunge … which it must, eventually … and the news media begin lamenting the death of the economic-boom, predicting a recession or depression … the economically motivated opportunity seekers will retreat to the security of their jobs. In their wake, they will leave the drying carcasses of the ‘bullstuff advertisers’ of today … dead or dying in a market with an ever smaller market universe.
If I had the time and space, I could probably go back and compile a list of the ‘bullstuff advertisers’ who suffered that fate when the economy equalized in the mid-1980s. — Whether it happens this year, next year, or the year after, you can bet your bippy it will happen.
Of course, right now, some of you are probably saying…
“What Does That Have To Do With Selling my products or services?”
Nothing, really – but – it goes to the very heart of building your business … no matter what product or service you sell.
To succeed, you must understand the subtle, but profound, impact the economy has on the motives of your potential customers.
By relating these facts to you, I hope you will begin to realize … no matter what product or service you are selling … how very, very important it is for you to…
Know Your Customers!
Not just ‘what’ they can or will do with your product, but what motivates them to want your product or service in the first place. — The better you can define their motives, and the conditions that generate those motives, the better prepared you will be to “give your customers what they want.”
And, always remember…
Business Is NOT a Zero-Sum Game!
Unlike the ‘bullstuff advertisers’ … be sure you offer a true value-for-value exchange, so your customers will still be with you when the conditions that motivate them have changed.
‘Bullstuff advertisers’ love to talk about all the money they’ve made. — Money is their goal – but – money is only a way of keeping score; nothing more… a tool to be used; not an end unto itself.
Dedicate your efforts to making customers … not just sales … the kind of satisfied customers that stay with you year after year; through thick and thin. The money will come as surely as night follows day.
That s how I have survived and prospered, even during those times when the whole world seemed set against me.