When does crowdfunding for business become panhandling? Do you think it crosses the line or are you OK with it?
Every day, someone we know is pitching the crowdfunding plea and the point at which it becomes irritating for me is when entrepreneurs hold crowdfunding campaigns to cover typical business expenses.
For example, paying for outsourced consultants, printing costs, prototype production, web hosting fees, etc. Some even ask for money to help pay for their time!
It used to be a given that if you were brave enough to sail your own ship and launch a business, you’d use your brain and work hard to pay for these things, whether it was through a private investor, a business loan, your savings, or just hard work. Crowdfunding a special project can be OK, but asking for money to cover your FedEx bill? Really?
Begging from friends, family and total strangers used to be taboo, it put you in the ranks of the homeless guy on the corner begging for money. And nobody wanted to be That Guy.
But thanks to Kickstarter, entrepreneurs have seen how easy it is to reap easy results from online panhandling, so they’re doing it in droves. Forget budgeting! Who needs to learn how to manage cash flow? There’s an easier way and we don’t even have to look people in the eye when we beg!
It’s mighty tempting to jump on the go-fund-me bandwagon. Jim and I have a ton of projects we haven’t done because we can’t afford to do them since we’re too busy trying to earn a living. I won’t ever say that we won’t do a campaign, but right now I’m just so irritated by the proliferation of outstretched hands popping out of my monitor each day, we’re not going near it.
Can you make money at “selling” in the mult-level marketing business model?
Once again our hero Dave Ramsey nails this question. His insight accurately reflects our own experience.
In the May 2, 2014 episode of The Dave Ramsey Show, Dave shares his thoughts on multi-level marketing income possibilities. A listener wrote in to ask if he thought it was possible to earn big money at “selling” Mary Kay or Avon cosmetics to which Dave says:
“I think the evidence is clear. The vast majority of people who join anything, whether it’s multi-level or otherwise don’t make it at thing. And so there’s a tremendous amount of fall-out in Avon or Mary Kay. But there are those that go on to do very, very well with it. Now, what is the difference?
In other words, you don’t want to join them and say you’re an automatic millionaire. Well you’re not. People don’t make six figure incomes unless they develop six figure talents and put in six figures worth of effort over an extended period of time, multi-level or otherwise. And so if somebody is trying to sell you magic beans, get away from them they’re hype-sters.
But are there people that have made fortunes selling Mary Kay and Avon? No. There are people who’ve made fortunes in Mary Kay and Avon recruiting thousands of other people to sell Mary Kay and Avon. And that’s the basis of multi-level.
So what you need to understand is, if you want to make a bunch of money in multi-level, and there’s nothing wrong with multi-level inherent in it, the bunch of money is made by you understanding that money is made in mult-level by the number of people you recruit, keep, train and nurture.
So you are in the sales recruiting, training and management business. Recruit. Train. Manage. You are not in the makeup business, you are in the people business. If you understand that, you have a shot at making some money.
As a part-time job, they pitch all of this stuff as part time jobs, but they’re not great as part-time jobs for most people. Most people go out there try to sell enough makeup and you coulda made more money delivering pizzas in most cases. If you’re just trying to make some money working three or four hours a week, it’s really not a great part-time job. In most cases.
The exception would be while you’re in it as a part time job, is if you excel at building your hierarchy. If you build your hierarchy very quickly, then it becomes a pretty decent part-time job because you’ve got other people making money that you make money on, obviously.
The good news is, the sky’s the limit. The bad news is sometimes there’s hype involved and people don’t tell the truth. They get all jacked up and all excited and in their excitement they exaggerate to the point of lying. You gotta be careful with that. And then just go in there and tell the truth, love people, hire people but know what business you’re getting in. You’re getting in the hiring and training business. And if you want to get in that business in mulit-level you can make a lot of money. You really can. I know several people who make six figures in both of those organizations, a couple make seven. It can be done.”
Thank you Dave, you said it better than we ever could.
Recently a group of nomadic entrepreneurs were having a Facebook discussion about how they make money on the road. The following conversation ensued between Jim and two individuals, including “Person #2″ who seems to be quite in tune with the type of vague MLM language that we will never use when describing our own business endeavors:
To protect the innocent, we’ve omitted names:
Person 1: I’m a chef by trade. Do you think I could just bake one pie at a time in an rv and charge a hundred dollars a pie? I make really good pie…
Person 2: Well Andrea you could come up with healthy recipes and share them as a health coach and increase your cash flow with residual income…
JIM: Lu is right in a way Andrea. If you know pies, publish an information product! E-book, webinars, e-seminars, member only content website…We went spent last night boondocking across from the Pieoneer in Pie Town so this hits home right now. The world needs more pie!
Person 2:Actually Jim I am totally right as with health and fitness coaching then you get the added benefit of replication which pays you for not only the work you do but also on the team you build. That way you can get paid not only on what you fingerprint, but also on the residual cash flow that streams from those who you help along the way.
Do you hate MLM language as much as we do? What are some common MLM catch-phrases that drive you nuts? Share in the comments section below!
If you think that stories about mobile entrepreneurs working from a hammock on the island of Bali are nothing more than marketing hype to sell books like The Four Hour Workweek, think again.
This article about digital nomads from International Business Times spotlights mobile entrepreneurs who are making their world travel dreams happen, and making money at the same time:
BALI, Indonesia: It was exactly six months ago when Merav Knafo packed the contents of her life into a storage garage in Encinitas, Calif., and hopped a flight to Bali. She doesn’t know when she’ll see those possessions again or even where she’ll be a few months from now. It’s not that Knafo has “checked out of life,” as she put it, but that she’s found a different way to live it — a way she says most of us are too afraid to try.
. . . . oDesk found in a study released last month that of the three-quarters of its users who made a change to be less tied to a physical workplace, 67 percent became freelancers and 34 percent created their own virtual business team. Meanwhile, 59 percent of those who went nomad last year reported an increase in income. Since becoming less tied to their physical workplace, 92 percent said they were happier (versus just 2 percent who claimed to be less content). oDesk credited a generational shift whereby collecting possessions now has less cultural currency than collecting experiences.
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