*WARNING* Rant ahead!
I’ve started & deleted the first few lines of this post a few times. This is something I feel VERY strongly about and I know that there is a fine line between trying to make a point (I’m not interested in being persuasive with this, it’s simply my opinion and a clear indicator of the direction things will be going in my business) and just bitching.
Bitching about something is good because you get it out, but you need to be selective about where you do it (I do plenty of bitching and venting to my friends but once it’s out I move on. Even if it’s hard to practice, I remind myself that I get to CHOOSE what I focus on).
I think the best way to approach this is to look at a few ‘offline’ examples, but before we do that I just thought it would be helpful to look at the definition of entitlement:
For some reason I’ve been thinking about offline businesses lately and the differences between a customers perspective with an offline business and an online business. And in some ways online businesses have to work much harder than offline businesses.
Let’s take a look at the grocery store around the corner (first thing that comes to mind) – and I’ve given this example on a podcast episode so if you’ve heard this before, bear with me.
When I walk into the grocery store there’s usually a table up front of something on sale or that’s on ‘special’. It usually ties in with something relative to the season, a holiday or an event (ex: Easter – there’s a table of cookies shaped like Easter eggs, flowers or other spring shapes). There might be some balloons on the table and there’s ALWAYS a big sign with the ‘special price’.
Hopefully you’ve got a picture in your head of this exact scenario.
Now let me point a few things out:
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- The store didn’t provide me ‘free content’ about the value of the cookies
- I wasn’t “offended” that the first thing I saw when I walked in was something they were trying to sell me
- It didn’t ruin my shopping experience
- If I decide to buy the cookies I understand that it was my CHOICE
- The store didn’t send me something in the mail pre-framing that there was a holiday coming and I might need cookies
- There weren’t other customers standing there telling me how good the cookies were
- The store didn’t offer me a bonus as an incentive to buy the cookies
Does that seem ridiculous???
That was my intention.
I honestly do NOT understand why people get so worked up about business on the Internet.
Unless you’re living a life that is beyond comprehension, I’m pretty sure no one put a gun to your head to enter your name and email, read a post, attened a webinar or spend time on social media.
It’s ALL YOUR CHOICE.
Why then do people get so bent out of shape?
A friend of mine who is also in the mastermind I’m in, Garret J. White , summarized this BEAUTIFULLY in a video he posted on Facebook called ‘Entitlement’ (it’s worth watching, but I will let you know that Garret drops the f-bomb pretty regularly so if that puts you off you probably want to skip the video, but the message is BRILLIANT).
This is where the hard work comes in.
As an online entrepreneur, you’re supposed to create tons of VALUE (free content in one form or another) before you can offer someone something for sale, right?
It only makes sense because there is SO much information online and you do this to establish your authority and expertise in a way that makes people want to do business with you. They trust you.
How many times have you heard the saying “People want to do business with people they like, know and trust.”
My guess is you’re just as tired of hearing it as I am. Sigh.
BUT… tired or not, it’s true. And I get that.
Here’s the other part of that point.
No one OWES you free content.
This is right up there with people who contact me out of the blue telling me they would like to be on the podcast.
No introduction, no “hey! I love your content/site/podcast…. how can I support you?” it’s simply “Do this for me!”.
ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING ME???
Did you ever notice the people who complain about not making money online are also the people who CHOOSE (yep, there’s that ‘choice’ thing again) NOT to invest in their own business?
They bitch about the cost of a product or service (and hear my heart, I’m not talking about the people who say “I’d love to purchase your product/service but don’t have the funds right now” or “would you consider offering more payment options?” Which, btw, I’ve recently had someone ask that and that simple question is going to result in a win-win for them AND me. But more about that in another post).
Do NOT expect people to spend money with you to grow their business if you’re not willing to spend money to grow your own business.
I won’t go all woo-woo on you here and get into universal law and energy (what you focus on is what you get), but let’s just run with the old saying “What comes around goes around.”
Here’s a video for you expanding on the points I made in this post and would LOVE LOVE LOVE your comments and input. Let’s get the dialogue going!