Jul 2006

OK, this is the 2nd post about what’s been in my head this week. The first one was about my love life … this one is about my business life …

This week in my business

Again, this week had its ups and downs in this area.

First, I had several great meetings this week. Took a few steps forward with some old clients. Wrapping up some old projects. And had some great meetings with new prospects (and those meetings really made me realize that I’m an expert at what I do!).

So the few meetings inspired me to go get more meetings! I’m now gonna follow up and close a few more deals. These past few months, I’d been feeling like I had too little work … and I’m now gonna experiment with too much work!

In the latter half of the week … I went back to doing what I had sworn off a few months back. Corresponding & talking more with other Internet Marketers.

The problem … with the information marketing community

(This is going to be a slightly long post … so why don’t you get a cup of coffee first, before reading on).

I have something against the information marketing community.

For those of you who don’t know how it works … the Info-marketing community includes a lot of gurus who teach great concepts by books, audio CDs, video series, real life seminars and coaching programs.

Who pays these marketing gurus? People like you and me. People who want to improve their careers. People who want to make more money. People who want to increase the sales of their business. For the most part, these people are hoping that every program they buy into will be the “magic pill” they had been waiting for … the one that will make them invincible, healthy, rich & happy.

Now … this is very important. All the stuff the “gurus” produce is very high quality. I’ve never come across a sub-standard product. They’re always concise, full of information and solve some problem for people who buy in. In fact, I hope to be a “guru” like this … in my niche … one day soon.

But the problem doesn’t lie with the Gurus … it lies with the junkies who worship these gurus

The problem I have is with the people who become addicted to self-improvement products. They become … (drumroll) … info-junkies!

They go from program to program, book to book, seminar to seminar … hoping to get better … and looking for some particular kind of result from their life or business. Most of these junkies are right in the begining of their careers. Most of them will blow their savings on different kinds of products before they even make their first little fortune!

There are two main problems with people who get wrapped up in infomarketing

1. People stop taking action. Once you start buying these products … the only kind of action you take is buying more products! Some of you will relate to this … this is particularly true in the making-money niche , the internet marketing niche and the self-improvement niche.

2. People stop being satisfied with their progress & life in general. The whole deal about getting better in your career/marketing/life is so that you can achieve more … and feel good about yourself. But every junkie stops losing perspective … after every single course, he wants more and more achievements (and of course, since he’s spending all his time just studying … there are almost no achievements).

Obviously, I think everyone should spend time in improvement … but not at the price of being unhappy with yourself! The first thing every junkie should be taught … is his/her self-worth, and being happy with themselves … then, feel free to keep improving.

But most junkies want to improve … because there’s some particular goal they want to reach … and they think that goal will make them happy (it could be a $1 million for an internet marketer … it could be a great boyfriend/girlfriend in the dating niche … and it could be the feeling of superiority in the self-improvement niche).

Anyway, back to the issue … and my own recovery from this addiction

“Hi, my name is Rachit … and I’m an info-junkie”.

A few months ago, I had become exactly like this … eagerly buying into all the hype about everything – marketing, making money, dating, internet marketing, NLP, self improvement … and I would spend almost half my week studying these materials.

I truly believed that this stuff would make me wiser … and I would be much more successful.

Alas, that wasn’t the case. I just become more and more addicted to these materials … spending my savings in DVDs, books, courses, seminars and more.

Then one day in April … it hit me out of the blue. I needed to get out. I wasn’t getting any richer, I wasn’t getting any happier. And while I studied the best marketing material from the best gurus … nothing good was happening for me (apart from the temporary euphoria at the end of a good book or seminar).

I realized the profound truth that all the marketing gurus knew … that 98% of their customers would end up becoming junkies. They wouldn’t take action, get successful … and there’s nothing these gurus could do to motivate us otherwise.

Because its so much easier to read a good book and feel smug … than to actually go out and try new techniques in business. Or go make conversation with random strangers in the hopes of killing your social fears. Or taking a deep look inside yourself to feel good about yourself. These actions are so much scarier than sitting on your bed and reading!

From that point onwards … I changed my life. I unsubscribed from 22 different newsletters that week. I stopped buying any more books or products. I decided to re-read the material I had already bought instead of buying the hype about the latest new thing.

I decided to trust myself. I decided that I had studied enough material about marketing, internet, NLP, dating and everything else. Now, I just needed to go out and be myself … and trust my own abilities to take me through to success.

So … I’ve been living a junk-free life for over 3 months now.

Whenever my friends ask me my opinion on the latest marketing/self-improvement product … I smile & walk away.

Whenever someone gives me advice on how to improve my business – I thank them for their great opinion and then whisper to myself “Just do it your way … You’ll figure it out in time”.

Whenever one of my friends critiques anything I did in my love/dating life … I smile … turn around … and just tell myself “Don’t worry, you’ll be fine. Women get attracted to the man underneath … not the techniques of the moment”

Whenever the latest internet marketing enthusiast emails me to ask for my advice on how to start … I politely tell him that I’m not an expert in the making-money niche … Stuart’s the guy to talk to about that.

As you can see … I’ve really been working hard to stay clean. It’s just as hard on us info-marketing junkies … as it is on alcohol or drug recoverers.

But a relapse of an addiction is that easy … read on …

But this past week … I put my foot in the water again … where the pond is full of info-junkie fish. Fishes that are eager to learn more to make their first million. And bigger fish who are so keen to share their experiences and help newer fishes learn. All the fishes are sweet at heart and mean well … and I don’t have a problem with them.

The problem is with me. It’s the same feeling an ex-drug addict gets when he walks into a rave. It’s the same feeling an ex-alcoholic gets when he’s put in a room with an open bar.

I lose my sense of satisfaction around these people. This same sense of happiness … the faith in trusting myself … and the confidence that I don’t need dollar goals to feel good about myself … it evaporates around this community.

Because everyone wants to give advice to me … so that I can make more money. Well, I do want to make more money … but it’ll just happen! As I grow with every experience, have my own failures (I really need some of those!) and mature … I’m sure I’ll do very well. But I don’t want to stop at every step, question every action …. and judge myself on anything. I like letting go of judgement and having no regrets over every decision of mine.

Final thoughts on this post

So, all my fellow junkies … I won’t judge you. You’re free to live your life any way you like. In return all I ask … is you don’t judge me either. Don’t think of me as a guru … or as a loser. Just as a fellow traveller.

If you want to support me … do so with empathy, humor and fun. But please don’t tempt me … by passing critical judgement on everything around you … (at least don’t do it while I’m around). Have a little mercy … you wouldn’t talk about the great taste of a Chivas Regal in front of an alcoholic. So, don’t talk about your fascination with info-products in front of me … Let this ex-addict recover 🙂

And in return, I promise not to write so morose any more :). I’ll fill up this blog with funny posts, videos and clips. I’ll have interesting adventures in my life and make stories out of them for you to enjoy.

Rachit Dayal

Is the Managing Partner at Happy Marketer, and handles clients with needs in Web Analytics, Search Engine Optimization, Google AdWords, Website Design and Conversion Consulting.

As Singapore’s first Qualified AdWords Professional and one of the first Analytics Qualified Professionals in the region, Rachit has been on the forefront of search marketing in Singapore since 2004.

But as this industry comes into maturity, he believes now is when the fun is starting – when clients dare to dream of exciting campaigns, and we can finally show tangible positive ROI from all marketing campaigns.