I recently attended a 3-day business conference in Vancouver. There were about 500 people in attendance, all business owners, and entrepreneurs who were there to network, learn and be inspired.
All in all, it was a great event that resulted in my meeting new people and gaining valuable insights that I brought home with me to infuse into my business.
The conference boasted nine high-profile speakers including thought leaders like Jack Canfield, Dr. John Gray, and James Malinchak. Their talks were entertaining, insightful, informative and motivating. They certainly learned the craft of being an influential presence on the stage well.
But make no mistake, each of these speakers was there with the sole purpose of promoting their wares and influencing the audience to purchase their key strategies, programs, and courses that promised business success.
And they succeeded.
The volume of people that ran to the back of the room to grab their limited-time, extraordinary low-cost offering before it was sold out was mind-boggling.
As a member of that audience, I was fascinated by what I was witnessing. Perhaps it was my state of mind or the confidence I already felt in my capabilities of achieving further business success, but I was not at all tempted to be a part of the crowd to run to the back of the room and grab a purchase.
I looked around and saw men and women who were involved in a variety of different businesses and industries. Many of whom were desperate to get that secret formula that would transform their struggles into riches.
The speakers on the stage knew this and the audience played right into their hands.
Throughout the 3 days, the audience was presented with lots of solutions, advanced systems, and formulas on how to achieve success in their business. But the problem is, not all proposed solutions were ideal for everyone.
But what is a business owner and entrepreneur to do?
They are attending such events to help them with their business so are naturally attracted to the offers made up on the stage.
So to help avoid making irrational and emotionally-based decisions when faced with the pressure of live event and even free webinar offers, here are 5 steps on what to think about first before jumping in with the crowd and grabbing your purchase:
- Think things through first. Ask yourself if this opportunity is truly going to get you the return on your investment if you make the purchase. What are you willing to commit to in order to get the most out of that investment?
The key here is to understanding success is not just going to happen by signing up, but to actually do the work. Are you really willing to do the work? Are you going to be 100% committed to this or will you get home, set it aside, and promise to get to it when you get a chance?
None of these programs will get you the results these presenters are talking about if you’re not committed enough to follow through on every single step provided.
- Be objectively critical. When these speakers are on the stage, they are sharing the best success stories possible – the cream of the crop. Often this reflects only a minor percentage of those who have taken the program.
Analyze. Be objective. And don’t make emotionally-based decisions that compel you to run to the back of the room and purchase. This is exactly what they are counting on.
- Decide if your business can truly benefit from what you will learn. Just because they are telling you this on stage doesn’t mean it’s a perfect fit for you, your business model and your goals.
As an example, if you have the gift of service and support, then more than likely will not do well learning to be a speaker on stage, despite that presenter saying “anyone can do this using my system and processes”.
If you have the gift of, say, music, then being a published author is probably not something you should pursue, despite being provided with a “fool-proof, iron-clad method that will get you on the Amazon best seller list”.
Ask yourself if what this presenter is offering exactly what you need to learn in order to reach your business goals or is there something better suited for you available elsewhere? Do you really need to learn all of this yourself or is hiring someone who is an expert in that area a better decision that will help reach your goals quicker without having to become an expert in that field first?
- Recognize the emotional manipulation that’s happening. We see this all the time. Whether you’re attending conferences or online webinars, there’s always a “limited time offer” that makes it irresistible to pass up.
Don’t let these “One-time-only” offers lead you into thinking this is the only chance you’ll ever get to take advantage of what’s being offered. It simply isn’t true. It’s a sales tactic that preys on people who make emotional decisions and don’t want to be left out or miss out on an incredible opportunity.
These programs will all still be offered after the hype ends. Even if that means paying $50 more, so be it. Give yourself time to objectively work through the pros and cons and decide whether it’s worth your investment or not.
Don’t let your emotions be triggered by the slick sales speech or written sales copy on a page.
- Do your research. This may not necessarily be the case for headliner speakers we see on the stage, but sadly, there are a lot of very smooth-talking “gurus” out there who are nothing but smoke and mirrors. They offer a lot of hype but little substance.
Do your pocketbook a favor; before investing in any kind of program or product, research the person selling it first. Do a Google search and see if any bad reviews come up. Ask people in your social media groups if they’ve had any experience with that person and what were the results.
Your goal is to make an informed decision, not an emotional one based on the promises of the sales copy. And if you do encounter negative reviews – listen to your gut. So many times wrong decisions are still made because, as human beings, we’re highly influenced by emotions and we can easily justify our actions based on those promises despite finding evidence to the contrary.
After reading this, you might think I’m against purchasing programs and courses all together but that’s not the case at all. I’m not saying not to invest in business growth strategies, but instead to make informed, objective decisions on which investments to make in the first place.
The sad fact is that marketing can be a very manipulative process that is meant to create fear- and lack-based, emotional responses. The people we see on stage, as well as those that do highly visible free webinars, are masters at pulling these emotional triggers.
Simply be aware of that manipulation and follow the guide I outlined above to help you decide whether or not your business can truly benefit from that investment you’re being asked to make.
Do you have any stories of acting on impulse and regretting the purchase later?
DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation in writing this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.
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