How Much Money The “Gurus” Make… And How They Do It

You said you wanted more transparency. I shall oblige you…

This year so far, I estimate that about $100 Million has been made by “gurus” doing product launches. I know a lot of these numbers because I have written copy for most of these people. I have an “insider line” on what various promotions have done. And while I never reveal confidential information from anyone’s individual business… I can tell you that as an aggregate the number is very close to $70 million… and I believe it’ll be over $200 Million by the end of the year.

You’re being lied to — continuously and with gusto. Most of the courses and programs have been touted as “must have” methods and secrets you “cant’ live without”… and the sales pitch for these things makes it clear that if you don’t have the latest, greatest, whiz-bang whang-doodle, you’ll be lost in the middle of a hopeless world. Simply not true.

You’re the victim of an elaborate scam — just like you already suspect. Now, not all “Internet Marketers” are scamming you. And some who are scamming you aren’t doing it on purpose. But at the end of the day, you’re still sitting there with your wallet cleaned out. And it doesn’t have to be this way.

Now here’s the secret I want you to “get”.

You can learn a lot from the “gurus”… but mostly by watching what they do instead of what they say.

What they say is… “You just have to have Method X, and if you don’t, you’ll never REALLY be successful.” And then they proceed to sell you Method X… for a lot of money.

And now may I ask you: how’s that working for you so far?

How many more “Method X’s” will it take before you get the picture?

So that’s what they SAY..

But HERE’S What They DO…

What the “gurus” are all doing the one thing that they have in common – is so simple that when I tell you about it you’re going to be tempted to gloss over it.

You’ve heard it before.

It’s not sexy.

But it’s what’s really going on.

And you want to know what’s really going on.. and how to profit from it yourself… don’t you?

Okay. Now that you’re ready to take what I’m about to tell you as the serious truth, here’s what every single successful guru does:

Find a big group of people who are (a) passionate about a topic, who (b) have money to spend on that topic (and who already do spend money on it), and then (c) find out what they want, (d) make the product these people are begging for and (e) sell it to them.

You most likely already knew this.

Think about how the “gurus” sell their stuff to… let’s call it “The Internet Marketing Crowd” or “IM Crowd”.

And what do we know about the “IM Crowd”? Well, follow along with me here. The IM Crowd…

  1. Is passionate about making money online.
  2. Has money to spend on their topic.
  3. And already does spend money on it!

So the smart “guru” just figures out what these folks want… makes it… and sells it to them.

That’s it.

The secrets of becoming a guru – revealed!


So What’s Wrong With That?

Let me be really clear: not a thing is wrong with this.

In fact, I recommend you do exactly the same thing in your own market.

What IS wrong, though, is when Gilligan Guru starts telling you seductive lies that go like this: “Step right up, ladies and gents, and get your own Money Making Genie 2012! Just rub the lamp, and money comes out of your computer just like an ATM machine! It’s MAGIC!”

And without the Money Making Genie, the Guru implies, you just can’t make it in this business.

But ask yourself a question: why isn’t Gilligan Guru actually using Money Making Genie himself?

And if he’s not using the Genie… then how IS Gilligan Guru making his money?

Right: he’s doing it by telling lies. He’s appealing to your desires alright, but not delivering the goods.

Whether it’s Method X or Money Making Genie 2021… the “guru” is making promises but not keeping them.

And he’s not telling you what really makes him all that money.


Read This Part Or Stay Broke (Your Choice!)

There is a very real conspiracy to extract as much money from you as possible.

Right now, as I write this, there is a group of “gurus” sitting in a circle in some hotel suite.

Each one of them is talking about their own version of Method X, and how he plans to sell it to the masses.

And they are all agreeing to promote one another’s Method X….

…and that’s why you keep getting email after email from the same group of people promoting one another.

Now, am I saying it’s wrong to promote products for other people? No. I’m not. What I am saying is that when there is an organized “plan” to put you into a cycle of buying one $2,000 or $5,000 product after another, without regard for what’s best for you…

…when you have bought… and bought… and bought stuff, but still haven’t made any money….

…when you are being told 10-12 times per year that the latest, greatest, “Method X” is the “one true answer” to all your problems…

….and you keep racking up credit card debt to buy all this crap, with no results to show for it…

IT’S TIME TO GET OFF THE MERRY-GO-ROUND.

It’s time to stop buying crap, and start making some money. Agreed?

Now show me you meant it when you said you wanted truth-telling here. Do the following:

1. Comment here on the blog (if you’re reading this in our email feed, just head over to http://RayEdwards.com

2. Spread the word. Share this post. Click the “Like” button. Do something.

Thanks! Now… what do you have to say about all this?

Ray Edwards is a world-renowned copywriter and communications strategist, writing for some of the most powerful voices in leadership and business including New York Times bestselling authors Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (Chicken Soup for the Soul) and Tony Robbins. Ray is a sought-after speaker and author, hosts a popular weekly podcast, and blogs at RayEdwards.com.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • http://www.MichelFortin.com Michel Fortin

    Excellent article, Ray! Well said.

  • http://www.thesilentseller.com Rob Metras

    You have a way of speaking the truth that some people don’t want to hear. The opportunity seeker is always looking for the latest and greatest thing. The serious business guy just gets down and perfects one thing after another. Like the gurus who listen,learn,promote because some poor sucker wants it.I would much rather listen to a bunch of gurus in a mastermind and pick up an idea than buy the current load of crap that is being shilled as your ticket to riches. I know why I like you Ray and I am sure that is true for many others my friend.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Thanks Rob – I really am glad to hear your comments and thought. As a good friend (and also a good customer), I value your opinion.

  • http://www.essentialsocialmedia.com Tom Gray

    Thanks, Ray, you’ve done a valuable service with this post. Most of these gurus remind me of the old adverts in the back of magazines, “Make a Million Stuffing Envelopes”. When you send away your money you get a kit instructing you to place an ad saying “Make a Million Stuffing Envelopes”!

    The real disservice the ‘fakirs’ are doing is obscuring the true gurus who really do have something, service, system or otherwise to offer; who drink their own Koolaid(r) and are more than happy to share it. I’m savvy enough to avoid a scam (intentional or otherwise) but not smart enough to know when it isn’t.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Well, Tom, I have to disagree. Based on your comments here, it seems likely you are indeed smart enough to know when it ISN'T a scam. :-)

  • Mike the thai guy

    Hello Ray,
    it’s exactly what everyone suspects and they also don’t know what to do about it.
    keep up the good work
    I love it,

    Mike

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Thanks Mike. I've been a little overwhelmed by the response to this post. I appreciate it!

  • Mia

    Watching what people actually DO in the midst of hearing what they are saying is a good idea in all areas of our lives. It’s hard, mostly because our actions and our words do not match up most of the time, and especially when we want to trust somebody else more than we trust ourselves and our gut instinct. We want to believe that somebody else has the secret that will solve all our problems, but nobody has that. We have to listen and learn, yes, but then we have to DO SOMETHING. We have to take a risk and sometimes screw up, and that’s how we learn, just like toddlers. Online marketing is just a newer, faster, scarier opportunity for snake-oil sales because the web is so huge. Humans are still humans and we still have to watch and learn, same as always. Thanks for your voice of sanity in the sea of confusion, Ray!

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Well said, Mia.

  • Beatrice

    Hi Ray,
    A very good post, I have been following your email for the past 3 to 4 years, I remember the sales pitches you made, weren’t you one of the gurus your now talking about.. :) no pun intended.
    I agree, with you that its time people got off the merry-go-around, I find that people are so desperate to make money online with all the promises that have been made, that they are willing to spend their last dollar on the promise… These so called Gurus, target these desperate and venerable people out there who genuinly want to make an extra income to make ends meet
    Most of the Gurus talk about giving back to the world, wouldnt it be nice to hear of some guru taking a handful of people and making it happen for them, changing someones life forever… I have been marketing online for the past 2 years now, although I dont make big dollars yet, but I still help hundreds of people in our mastermind groups for free… I know it takes up alot of my time, but the thought of bringing someone closer to financial freedom is the bigest gift of all. I do it with out expectation.
    I guess they have to keep having the big launches, and they have to keep selling stuff, and the people we are talking about will still buy, hoping and praying that some day, they can live the life of these gurus, not even realising that the money these gurus make is the hard sweat and tears of peoples hard earn money that is supporting their life style.. enough said
    I like your honesty, and I have always respected your professionalism.. Your a great guy…
    and i know what your thinking… each one is responsible for their own decisions.. right

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Thanks for the kind words, Beatrice.

      I have indeed made sales pitches – it's what I'm in the business of doing.

      And to be completely honest, there are one or two things I promoted in the past that I wish I hadn't. The best I can do about that is to say, “Lesson learned.” It's not worth it, and it pays to do your homework BEFORE you promote something for someone else. Not just into their product but also into their customer service. Because the product may be great and the service lousy.

      As to my own products, I have never, to my knowledge, overstated the case for my own materials; I have a strong commitment to customer service; and an ongoing commitment to the idea that whatever I sell MUST make a positive difference in people's lives.

      Thanks again for your comments!

  • http://blogforprofit.com Grant Griffiths

    Interesting. I get a lot of emails from different IM’s each week. Not to buy their crap. But to see how they are doing it. And the one thing I have said over and over again is the fact all of them are promoting each other’s crap so much, there is an overload.

    Finally someone said what needed to be said and Ray, you nailed it. What a refreshing post to actually see someone say what too many of us have been thinking. Thanks!!!

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Thank you for letting me know it was the right thing to do.

  • Martin

    FINALLY!!! Someone (you, Ray), exposed what’s really going on in the IM world… and it’s about time! You delicately and non-offensively, but very powerfully pulled back the curtain and let your faithful followers in on the behind the scenes workings of the money-extraction machine that has been honed to perfection and is making a handful of people wealthy while keeping people who blindly trust them disillusioned, wanting more, and broke,

    A common term that the IM “gurus” use to describe their ideal market or client is… “Slow learners with deep pockets.” While that does make for good repeat clients, it’s kind of scary. There’s an old saying, “There’s a sucker born every minute.” Every one of us is in some way, a “sucker” for something, I suppose. Unfortunately, too many of the IM “gurus” have found a way to access the “sucker gene”, bring it to the surface and cause it to make people make poor decisions and do very unreasonable things.

    How do they do it? By appealing to not one, but several of “The Seven Deadly Sins.” Here’s what they are. Take a look and see how many of them are touched on in the next flurry of “gotta-have-this-product” emails. Greed, Lust, Envy, Gluttony, Pride, Wrath, and Sloth.

    Thank you for caring enough to share these thoughts. Hopefully, your followers will pay attention and stop being allured by, and taken in by the next “bright, shiny object” that promises to be the exact thing that they need to rescue them from their hum-drum lives, give them the financial security and lifestyle they long for, and the absolute last thing they’ll ever need to buy.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Thanks Martin – that certainly means a lot coming from you.

      I'm surprised someone hasn't come out with a product called: “7 Deadly Marketing Weapons – How to Get Rich Pandering to Greed, Lust, Envy, Gluttony, Pride, Wrath, and Sloth”

      ;-)

    • http://www.jpmaroney.com JP Maroney

      Martin,

      You, of course, are one of my favorite buds in the marketing world. And I like your comments here added to Ray's.

      “The Sucker Gene” — that's priceless. In fact, I can almost see a book by that title. :-)

      Great comments.

      • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

        Book title? Did I hear someone say “book title”? Maybe I could squeeze one more book deal into 2011…

  • Brian

    Ray -

    Aint' gonna happen. Our consumer society believes that just spending money on something will solve the problem. In other words, just the action of buying a course on how to do something will pacify that emotion that “I need to do something” (logical) which we know comes after the decision to make the purchase.

    Before that is all the hype that “You're going to miss out…”….. “you must get in now to see how it's done…”……”You can learn the hard-way… or take the shortcut and buy my course…”

    Scarcity
    Belonging
    Access to Secrets
    Easy Street

    are all more compelling to this crowd….sheep!!

    Regardless of what the gurus say, I see product launches failing in other niches..where the “sheep” are not buying into the rush of buying products/services through launches.

    They're blind sheep responding to the wolf calling them into his den.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Thanks for adding such carefully thought out points to this discussion.

      It occurs to me that there are people who can benefit from certain products – sooner rather than later. Aren't we then responsible to be persuasive as possible?

      Ray Edwards

  • http://www.TonyPearl.com Tony

    Ray,

    You've got quite a set of balls to write this post.

    And I love you for it!!
    Great stuff, sir. You hit the nail right on the head. Truly.

    The fact that you've written copy for so many of these gurus and have seen
    things from the inside qualifies you to expose the truth on this
    like a governmental whistleblower.

    I guess you're going to have to start looking over your shoulder from now on,
    so be careful!
    hahaha.

    I love your blog – keep sharing the goods, because you're my hero!

    –Tony Pearl
    http://www.TonyPearl.com

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Yep, I guess I have a set. I didn't know the post would generate this kind of response, really. But it's good to know I'm not the lone wolf on this one. :-)

  • http://PersuasionTheory.com Matt Fox: PersuasionTheory.com

    But Ray, “It’s not their fault.” :)
    Great post. Unfortunately, most won’t see through the transparency and keep looking for that magic pill.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Sad, but likely true.

  • Joseph

    The truth is out there and the truth is in the list The more you have the more suckers you get !

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      I love the X-Files reference! Thanks.

  • CJ

    Thanks for the cold hard facts, Ray. The IM industry could use a little more truth-telling.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Then happy day… 'cause I'm gonna keep tellin' it.

  • jasonhobbs

    Great post. Sometimes the reality check that it is all supply and demand is worth its weight in gold.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Good words, Jason!

  • Austin

    I couldn’t agree with you more Ray. You can learn a lot from the launches without actually buying what they are selling. Start selling and stop buying so much!!!

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      True. It also means when the offer comes along that is indeed right for you, you'll actually be able to afford it.

  • http://www.AdvisorsInsight.com Jim Enright

    Ray, Two Comments:
    1) next blog post, write about the marketing and traffic strategy of “re-tweeting,” “thumbs up,” and sharing a title without making an intellingent comment or contribution….which, I think is part of what you want.

    2) Last night I was mentally reviewing the last 4 years of gurus I've followed: The Big Seminar (AM2), Rich Schrefen, Planet Dan, and Info Marketing.

    Came to a similar conclusion, but more along the lines of “you have all the stuff….just focus and take massive action.” Unsubscribe to 90% of the junk and master gurus. Keep the few who are real.

    Your post brings to the front of mind what many know in the back of mind.. But that's what you do.

    Keep on doing it.

    Jim Enright
    http://www.AdvisorsInsight.com
    http://www.MortgageChoice.com

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Jim, that's a pretty solid plan of attack. Thanks for taking time to comment.

  • Jeff Wells

    “Do Something!” Me Likey, one of my favorite sayings is that “I'm off to do something even if it's wrong”. It may not turn out totally right. But, at least it will be a whole lot better than nothing.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      I love that saying!

  • Rolf

    Well, I’ll be …

    That was really nice to hear from you! Coming to think of it, I don’t remember you having promoted these bug guru’s 1 997 (cleverly instead of 2 000) to 5 997 (instead of 6 000).

    I guess they need for the Porsche and the big house.

    Brave of you to put it so plainly. I guess you will hear a lot about it!

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      To be fair, I have indeed promoted some of the big ticket launches. But I always made sure:

      1. I believed in the person.
      2. I believed in the product.
      3. I didn't try to “hypnotize” anyone into buying something that wasn't right for them.

  • Wayne

    If what these gurus do is so reprehensible why do you continue to write it for them?

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      I have never knowingly written copy for a person or product I didn't believe in.

      I have turned away plenty of business because it was reprehensible.

      And I have written for some that I later regretted when new information became available. I simply put them on a “never again” list.

  • Mike Korner

    I wholeheartedly disagree that marketers are to blame for me spending money. I have received many offers from marketers. The one thing I've observed is that no marketer has ever forced me to buy anything. My conclusion is that regardless of how many conspiracies exist and how many persuasive tactics are used, I am the one responsible for deciding when to spend my money. To think otherwise means I am a victim, and the world already has enough people blaming others for their circumstances.

    People who are learning should buy as many quality products as they need and will use. “Use” is the key word.

    For those of us who have all the materials they need, I agree that it's time to get off the merry-go-round and stop buying crap, and start making some money.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Mike,

      I never meant to say people shouldn't buy info products, nor that marketers shouldn't persuasively sell those products. Merely that it should be done without falsehood and trickery.

      I am a buyer and user of info-products. That kind of learning – coupled with the USING of those products – has made me a lot of money.

      So I'd say we actually are on the same side of this one.

      • Mike Korner

        Ray, I agree that we are on the same side on this. We certainly agree that slimey marketers are bad news :)

        • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

          Amen!

    • http://twitter.com/mikaelrieck mikaelrieck

      Great comment Mike! I've purchased a lot of these products myself and have been “convinced” by copywriters' sales letters. I do however believe, that every time I have ever bought a product, there was something to learn from it and often times there was a ton of great information. Whether I fully applied or used it was up to me and I can truthfully say, that every time it didn't work, it was because I didn't work it.

      What is $1,000 compared to gained knowledge? Nothing!

      • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

        Agreed – it's that step of “fully applying” the knowledge that makes the difference.

  • http://www.kirstynsierra.com Kirstyn Sierra

    This is an excellent blog post…

    Something I learned awhile back is that you shouldn't buy anything until you need it. When you come to a place in your business where you need a course on a certain traffic generation method, product creation method, etc. go and find it. You'll likely pay less than what the “gurus” charge for their courses during a product launch, and you'll be much more likely to actually apply what you learn.

    I've learned to overlook the “hype” and just watch what the gurus do and I've learned a lot that way.

    Excellent post Ray.

    Otherwise you end up spending money on things that you don't need or can't use because you're not ready for it.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Well put, Kirstyn. Thanks!

  • http://CopywritingSells.com Chad Kettner

    Awesome article Ray.

    A few things –> As a copywriter, is it breaking the moral code to write for somebody when you don't agree with their products? When you think they're ripping people off? When you think it is borderline a scam?

    Personally, I no longer accept jobs I don't believe deliver excellent value to people who truly could benefit from buying. I wouldn't mind hearing your thoughts on this.

    Additionally – people have always been told “you get what you pay for”. It is ingrained in their heads. At least in the 35+ crowd. The gurus are taking advantage of this by selling $2000 products when there is often a comparable product for $100-200 that is many times just as good.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Chad

      Thanks for your comments.

      > As a copywriter, is it breaking the moral code to
      > write for somebody when you don't agree with
      > their products? When you think they're ripping
      > people off? When you think it is borderline a scam?

      Yes, in my opinion it is a moral compromise not worth making.

      I have never knowingly written for anyone or any product that I suspected of being a scam or otherwise deceptive.

      In the spirit of transparency, I have written for a couple of scam artists and only discovered their true nature AFTER the fact.

  • http://www.theinternettimemachine.com Itmdirec

    Well, I can honestly say that I have never heard it spoken so honestly! However, I don't blame any of the marketing gurus or make money online gurus because they found a system that works and makes them money. I actually find the marketing world quite political :) The one thing I disagree with however is people have money to spend. In these times, a lot of people are looking for ways to feed their families after losing a job and this is where marketers can be a little more sensitive.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      I appreciate your comments – and I have to say this: no marketer FORCES anyone to take food off their family's table. That's a decision that is made by the individual. If you fail to buy the baby food because you paid the cable bill with your last $100… is that a moral failing of the cable company?

  • Anthony Knight

    Hi Ray,
    Could not agree with you more. I learnt through trial and error and copying real people how to make money online, because of the Guru lies I have started http://www.internet-opportunity-news.com to help people find the genuine opportunities and methods to make money online without buying the guru products. People should ask themsleves before buying any how to get rich product this question, if it is so good why are they selling it without any future benefit from the customer. Why don't they take a % of the customers future business for helping them if their methods really work? D.R.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Well, probably because they know most people won't do anything at all. I don't want to stake my future by betting on most people's work ethic, quite frankly, and I can't say I blame anyone else for feeling the same,

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  • http://www.jpmaroney.com JP Maroney

    “IT’S TIME TO GET OFF THE MERRY-GO-ROUND. “

    But, I like riding Merry-go-rounds! :-)

    Seriously … well written article my friend. Really good stuff!

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Yeah, they're a hoot until you puke up your hot dog…

  • http://www.Guydz.com/moneypowerwisdom/ drmani

    Wow!

    Nice.

    Maybe we'll put out the welcome mat to greet you when you next step into the “Club of Plain Speakers” :lol:

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Thanks Dr. Mani. I've long admired you and the work you do – so I'm honored by your words.

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  • John C. A. Manley

    Great article. Strange how so few marketing teachers don’t apply a much better system:

    1. Show people how to make money.
    2. Show them how to make more money.

    Perry Marshall is a good example of someone who helps people build real businesses.

    I think the problem is “making money” isn’t easy. And people want easy. There are easier ways to do it — but none of it is easy in the end. It can sure be fun. Be easy. In fact, is easy fun? Is easy satisfying?

    That and people would rather be told a lie they like. You see it with health. They’d rather believe taking some blood pressure medication is going to solve their problems — instead of exercise, more rest and a better diet — when really the drug is just making it worse while making pharmaceutical companies a fortune with their 5000% mark ups.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      You're right on target, John. And it's not a new thing – in fact. the Apostle Paul wrote about this very thing, He said, “For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.”

  • http://www.marketingforwahm.com Emily

    Ok, I have to say that for a moment there you started making me feel guilty. But then I thought more about it after reading all the comments.

    See, I am at the moment creating my very first product launch. A few things about it; anyone can find all the information I am going to teach online, but I had spent a couple of years learning it all (without buying other's products), and I really feel that it can help many small businesses increase their number of customers. Although, the customers can find all this information themselves, buying my product will save them the 2 years and brainstorming it took me.

    I really do believe in my product and want to make sure that at the end of it, everyone who purchases it will benefit from it tremendously. And I want it to be affordable so I am putting a low price at $250 instead of $2,000, which most gurus would charge for it.

    That all said, I am not feeling guilty anymore, but will try my best to make sure that the people who purchase it will use it so that they don't just put it on the shelf and then say that it was a scam. Because, in my 10 years of business experience, the customers that complain are the ones that don't do their part. Some these days, expect a magic pill in which they won't have to do anything but still gain results.

    So, thank you so much for your post, because I am going to restructure my course in a way to make it easy for them to take action.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      I'm so glad to hear you are going ahead with your launch.

      I want to be clear: I believe in launches, I manage launches, and I think they are a good way to boost your business and help your customers at the same time.

      I am only taking issue with those who use legitimate business tactics for illegitimate reasons or in deceptive ways. And that is clearly not the case with you. Best of luck with your launch!

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  • Kevin Madison

    Ray, this post deserves what I've coined for those special people, things, or events…”boss player” status. I dig this a lot, and appreciate the candor you put into it. I'm personal friends with some of the same guru's you've written for, so I know you're spot on. My 2 cents is this in regard to this post, and that's for people to let go of the fear of being left out and grasp the idea of theirs plenty for everybody. It's no way possible any one person or set of guru's can earn it all. Find your position, and play the hell out of it. Thanks again, Ray.

    Kevin Madison

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Kevin, you're officially the first person to say I had “boss player” status. Thanks! My favorite phrase from your reply, though, is where you say there's “plenty for everybody”. Amen to that!

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  • Georg_Marvin

    Thanks for the eye opener Ray; for some of us who surely suspected – but could not verify nor speak authoritatively with first hand knowledge of that “inner sanctum syndicate racketeering”.

    You and Ryan Healy are appreciated at the every least because of your integrity , and more so, for your Primo top–shelf work, in the field of copywriting and internet marketing.

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  • Steve

    Excellent post Ray.

    Is there a 'list' anywhere that indicates who are the good guys and who I should be wary of?

    Steve.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      I don't know of any such list. And frankly, it'd be hard to trust such a list. A lot of people with axes to grind makes such a subjective thing difficult to rely on, in my opinion. Best to fall back to good old fashioned networking with people you trust, if you're considering a purchase.

  • Joemcvoy

    Ray,Great post and I agree with you. By the way, who are the people in this “syndicate”? Whoever is writing their copy is very good because they get me most every time. It’s my own fault getting distracted by the next “bright shiny object”, but I find I have nowhere near the skills needed to implement what they teach. Then, When I try to outsource to somewhere like the Philippines, I find that I don’t know enough about how to do the things I’m asking them to do to tell if they are doing it right or if they are telling me something is 8 hours of work when it only takes them 10 minutes.It appears it’s necessary to learn the tech stuff (how to FTP, put tracking code on a web page, etc) or to find someone you really, really trust.

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      I wasn’t writing about any “syndicate”. And please, please, please understand: the point of my post was to make it clear we each have personal responsibility in these matters. As the buyer.

      All of which you seem to already understand. I agree with you that its best to learn the tech stuff yourself – at least enough to know whether your tech guys are doing a good job!

  • Chris

    I woke up to the conspiracy to take my money a few months ago after spending probably over $5000 from hard earned savings and money I didn’t really have. I became more and more desperate and convinced that one of the products would work and even help me in my niche. Eventually I joined a Forum where they give you information to succeed online for free and at that point I stopped purchasing Guru IM products. I am better for it now and do not purchase such products as most of them are hype anyway. I now only purchase products that will help me with backlinks and maybe an ebook here and there.
    I am happy I woke up but kicking myself at all that money I wasted for no results. Still better late than never.

  • Chris

    I like how you’ve got a picture of an Indian Yogi as your image or link to the “gurus”. That is quite funny.

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  • Josephtan

    I agree with what you say as I have also sign up for many of the courses offered by some of the gurus.

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  • http://www.socreferral.com/rodante Jim Rodante

    Great article, and well put, Ray.

    I’ve always appreciated your writing style and know that you’re a well-respected copywriter. I have a comment first, then a question:

    I just recently came across the whole Syndicate thing and Salty Droid, through one of Ryan Healy’s recent emails. I guess Im a little late to the party. However, I too have subscribed to all of these guys emails at one time or another, many of them still, and always wanting to buy some of their big products. But I never did, mainly because the prices were what I thought way too high.

    Another thing that always turned me off – every time one of the big IM launches came out, I’d get affiliate emails from them all, promoting the same launch. So, I always thought to myself: “dont these guys make money by employing the strategies they teach, or do they just make cash from affiliate commissions on each others products? To this day, I still wonder. I suppose they do have other business than selling IM info products, most say they do, but I wonder.

    Ok, that’s my comment, now for the question…

    Since I’ve never bought any of their “legendary” products (ie. Stompernet, Mass Control, PLF, et al) – here’s my question: Are any of these products actually worth the money? I mean, are they good? Do they render the education they claim to? All of those guys, for the most part, seem to know what they’re talking about. And their sales letters, videos, emails, etc. always appear to be pretty high quality productions.

    Mind you, I agree that the anti-competitive stuff that’s going on is slimy at best. And based on the things Im now finding out, I’ll likely never buy one their products, and damn glad I never did.

    I’d just like to know, from anyone who’s ever bought any of the major guru’s products: is their stuff any good?

    Love to hear your thoughts, or anyone else who’s been a customer of the “Syndicate”.

    And Im assuming this post means that you’re no longer writing copy for these gurus? :) I’m sure you’ve got plenty of business outside of the IM niche to keep you plenty busy either way.

    Thanks Ray, you the man…

    Best,
    Jim

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  • Curtis Pittard

    Go down to the River and the Ash, the isolated Wood and Wild to find the Guru. If your seeking is done on the Inter-Webs with digital fingers instead of miles on foot what do you expect but to be led by your nose/conned? Similarly the most in-touch Judeo-Christian-Muslims do not find the true words of Christ/Allah in Million Dollar Temples. Just a thought. SoyCello@gmail.com

  • CappyEdwards

    Hey Ray, Thanks for the very useful information as I am gathering to put a post on my blog.

  • http://veronicadrake.co Veronica Drake

    Ray….I LOVE the fact that you are so real!
    My two favorite words are transparent and vulnerable.

    I spent many years and THOUSANDS of dollars trying to get the “IT” thing that would propel me to the level of guru! Living on credit cards and looking for my faith was a way of life for me.

    70K later and lots of broken promises (from others and MYSELF) I finally got it.
    I could buy every single magic potion that came down the pike BUT until I figured out who I was and WHY I woke up every day nothing would change.

    I am a 15 yr success story. LOL. NOTHING happens overnight and it is rarely comes in one package.

    The word vulnerability is so important in todays world. We are all walking around fearing that someone might see our “warts” and in reality we truly have no flaws. The Creator doesn’t make flawed products.

    So, my advice (although it wasn’t asked for.. Im lovingly sharing it) return to your Manufacture’s settings (The Creator) and build your greatness on that foundation!

    Ray, as always you are MY GURU!
    XO
    Veronica

    • http://rayedwards.com Ray Edwards

      Thanks Veronica – I love this part: “return to your Manufacture’s settings (The Creator) and build your greatness on that foundation!”