I was talking to a friend of mine last night in Australia and he was telling me how he once fell for an online scam where he thought he was getting a list of companies that would pay him to do surveys for them, and of course he got nothing of the sort. He was out $40, and had no recourse in getting his money back because the people went through some hidden source in setting up their chopping cart.

I told him that often in my adult life I’ve been tempted to do something that just didn’t quite sound right, and in every instance except one I didn’t follow through. The first time I did follow through was right out of college, where a friend and I paid some guy $20 to become wholesale marketers, and realized within hours that it wasn’t the job for us. For our troubles, we got to each keep one thing the company was selling, with my “gift” being a backgammon set that I still love to this day, so I feel as though I got my money’s worth out of it.

Also back in the day, I was trying to be a big time songwriter. I’d spend hours writing songs of all sorts, some I thought were pretty good, some I knew were just for me. I did research at the library for publishers I could send some of my music to, and I did. I even entered song contests, and had one of my songs finish in the top 600 out of 35,000 songs, so I felt pretty good about that.

But I also got contacted by a lot of people who said they wanted to record my song and put it on a record and market it to publishers and radio stations, which sounded pretty good. However, they all wanted me to pay for it, for someone else to record my music, and that didn’t sound right. The books I was researching at the library all said if someone asked you to pay for something instead of them offering you money, it was probably a scam. The pull was strong, I have to admit, but in the end I didn’t go that route, and I feel pretty secure about it.

Most of us are inundated with the latest and greatest thing online on a daily basis, and some of it sounds quite intriguing. Just a few weeks ago a friend of mine kind of ambushed me into a phone conversation with this other guy to start marketing online travel services, and it was “only” going to cost me $500 to join in. I still consider the guy a friend, but I was disappointed because I didn’t see that coming, though, after he asked me if I’d watch a couple of videos and if he could call me back and ask about it I will admit the Spidey senses did kick up.

I don’t go for glitzy presentations, video or written. If I get through the first 3 paragraphs of something, or into the second minute, and I haven’t been told what the product or pitch is, I leave. There are so many people marketing MLM products and services, and let’s face the truth, most of them aren’t getting by with that stuff. But they purchase it, try to push it as hard as they can, usually to their family and friends first, then they get beaten down by the resistance and bail out. It’s not that the products or the services are always scams, but the prospects they dole out to you as far as telling you how much money you can make is unrealistic.

Internet marketing isn’t easy; I’ll tell you that one right up front. Heck, regular marketing isn’t easy. Even if you’re an exclusive, where no one else does exactly what you do, there’s a world of competition out there doing something similar enough to make it hard for you to break through. So, any time someone else comes along and says you’re going to make a world of easy money if you just do this, or pay for that,… take a second minute to think it over with your non-greedy mind.

Now, books might be something different, because I’ve purchased a lot of ebooks and have learned a lot. I talked recently about the Joel Comm Adsense Secrets book, which I think is a pretty good book, and for the price I paid, it was a great book. The most I’ve ever spent on an online book was $40, and I thought it was worth every penny. But before I’ve purchased every book, I’ve done my research online, because I don’t just buy into the hype of something. I need to find at least two or three reviews before I’ll pull the trigger, and I don’t mean ads that look like reviews either. If everyone took a little bit of time in checking some of these things out first, we’d all be a whole lot happier.

Of course, this doesn’t mean I’m not still going to pitch a product or two at you; I am marketing on the internet after all. 🙂

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