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Monday, November 26, 2007

Rich Schefren... blah blah blahhhh... part 3

It seemed like only "yesterday" that I had penned, "Rich Schefren blah blah blahhhh, Part 2." It was in response to Rich suggesting that his prospective clients were "blind idiots" for not following his recommendations.  More precisely, he was referring to the herds of people clamoring for PLR products right after he, and some of his clients, pitched them on the virtues of going it the Schefren way.  It's safe to say it did not include PLR. ;-)

Like so many others, I personally see the value in some of the free lead-in materials Rich has given away.  I just don't see value in his characterization of people as "blind idiots" other than were he to say it as a guest writer on Sam Freedom's Internet Marketing Controversy Blog. 

But, also, like so many others, it's kind of icky and distasteful when someone with Rich's reach and visibility not only can't comprehend that a whole bunch of people are taking time to tell him why they are upset but that he then goes on to make them wrong.  He then adds insult to the injury by switching the focus of the conversation onto something that it never was in the first place... a tactic I've only come to expect from Hilary Clinton.

His reply to the mounting discontent is in italics, interspersed with my response to it.  And the whole shebang can be found right here at Rich Schefren's blog.  It's lengthy but if you enjoy a good dissection of a "holier-than-thou" reply from a "marketer-gone-crazy" then you'll find yourself enjoying this quite a bit:

Let's get a few things straight.

Already, it's obvious that Rich hasn't connected with those who found his actions objectionable.

When I said, "We can no longer be friends", I was referring to my readers, prospects, clients, and fellow internet marketers that claim they’re listening to me, agreeing with me, but still (for some strange reason) not hearing my message.

For some strange reason?!  You're supposedly surrounded by dozens of people who, along with yourself, make 100s of 1000s of dollars and the best you can come up with for why a number of people are not hearing your message is "for some strange reason"?!  THAT, Rich, is what is partly causing the ruckus amongst your (very tolerant) readers. 

Now I don't mind a ruckus but if you're going to present yourself as an authority on something and then chalk up areas where you're "less effective" as not working due to "some strange reason" then you seriously have to wake up and humble yourself a bit.  Maybe ask someone who's not so identified with your wealthy inner circle for some insight.

I despise opportunistic thinking (as opposed to strategic thinking). It's been one of my central rallying points since starting Strategic Profits.

Here's why: It's a bug (like a software bug), a thinking virus of some sort, residing in the brains of all those infected.. I say it's a bug because it's flies in the face of all reality. It's a desire to get something for nothing. And that my friends is the one of the initial ingredients to everything bad in this world.

The PARASITE inside must be starved – yet, the opportunist thinker does the opposite – it feeds it.

Good luck, Rich.  Bigger thinkers than you have been fried for attempting to impart this wisdom to the masses.  I think the well-known phrase, "Don't shoot me, I'm only the messenger" is wildly popular as a result of it.  Can you imagine what it would be like if you stepped into the center of a real Roman-era gladiator match and said, "What is wrong with you people?  Don't you know this is bad?"

I will give you a hint:  think "lion".

When you focus your attention on a free ride to your dreams – and you pay whoever promises you the fastest and easiest trip, you can be guaranteed only one thing – the destination is never what was sold to you.

So, if you really believe there’s a magic "SECRET" that stands between yourself and massive wealth, or that there are real people (just like you and me) who know the secrets, but for some reason they are “SECRETS THEY DON’T WANT YOU TO KNOW”. Then you are either paranoid, scarcity minded, or insane – not three qualities I look for in my friends.

Let's hope any of your friends who are million-dollar copywriters don't hear you talking like that.  You're threatening to put them all out of business since they rely on people being paranoid, scarcity-minded and insane.  And many even suggest negative consequences might occur by not using the product or by using a competitor's version, so it's like someone said in your comment section, you can't be in bed with these guys and then shame their victims, too.

My lord, Rich... working with the victimizers and then shaming their victims.  How dastardly!

So, if I’ve been describing you - I don’t want to be friends with you anymore – it really is as simple as that.

Ouch, you just described yourself and don't even realize it.  You must be paranoid that if all of those PLR-hoarding and MRR-chasing "idiots" continue to chase and hoard that things will become more scarce for you and those who pay you big money to teach them.  Think about it, how can you continue to command respect from prospects if people keep running to PLR and MRR opportunities to bother you enough to publicly call them "idiots."

You once asked,

What’s even more troubling is how unconscious opportunity seekers are to this "blind inner idiot" controlling their actions. Is it only me who sees this? Am I the only one whose perplexed with the inherent disconnect between what people say they " understand and agree with" and what they go running to the back of the room to buy?

Why did you abandon that question?  There is an answer but you do what most people do and try to answer it yourself.  The fact is, Rich, you either understand or you don't.  And if you don't, then be honest about it.  Simply blaming it on your potential customers isn't going to increase your understanding any sooner than sincerely seeking a good source of wisdom.  But instead, you quote another marketer,

One of my mentors, Jay Abraham, used to always say he didn’t want to be anyone’s intellectual entertainment. I always felt I knew what he meant by this. Yet today my comprehension of this statement is 10 times stronger than it was 2 days ago.

There's no shortage of people who take a great piece of wisdom and use it to avoid dealing with their incompetence.  Having written a blog where you not only blame everyone as expressing their "blind, inner idiot", you then proceed to insult everyone again by saying that they didn't understand you the first time... like they don't know when they're being called "idiots" or when you're being hypocritical. 

So ironically, this "enhanced comprehension" of yours results in you becoming someone's intellectual entertainment.  Wow...

A few readers have questioned why I would be friends with Mike Filsaime, and using him as an example of someone who sells "crap".

At first I ignored these comments because they aren't even on the same page of this post. There's a big difference between an opportunity seeker and a sleezy marketer (which is what certain readers were accusing mike of being – which I disagree with 100%). I was writing about opportunity seekers and some of you felt it was a good place to point fingers at Mike and basically accuse him of sleezy marketing.

I saw it but, I ignored it, hoping one of my readers would address the issue for me so I didn't need to get involved.

Well, it seems no one did.  I guess that makes us not only "blind, idiots" but "silent, blind idiots", as well.

First, to make it clear to the readers, I have personally never said such a thing about Mike.  However, it would be yet another mistake to just dismiss all of those statements about Mike because they weren't stated as a slights to Mike.  In fact, if you really want to take responsibility for your actions, you'll realize that Mike was doing just fine in whatever part of the world he is in, and wasn't even in this spotlight until you pronounced yourself high and mighty by referring to PLR and MRR-chasers as "idiots."

THAT is when people brought up your association with Mike Filsaime who was once a big player in the PLR/MRR market.

So it's understandable that you think such accusations "aren't even on the same page [as] this post" because you saw them as an attack on Mike when they were really questions about your hypocrisy.  And since you didn't see yourself as being hypocritical, you couldn't possibly have understood why people brought up Mike.

And that has allowed you to divert ATTENTION away from what, I'd bet, for most people, is the offending matter:  that you have coached people who have not only raised a whole internet marketing generation on the virtues of MRR and PLR but who have also profited from it handsomely... and without which, you would have not been paid, or had enough attention, to be running around calling non-Schefrenites, "idiots."

Yes, it’s true Mike Filsaime IS a close personal friend of mine. In fact, I feel extremely fortunate to be such close friends with Mike.

He was the friend that pushed me just enough to convince me to release the Internet Business Manifesto, He was the friend who believed in my message so much, he called all of his affiliates to personally get their commitment to mail for me. On top of all that, there’s even more. On my long list of well known clients – he was the ONLY (yes –only) guru who ever gave me credit when he was on stage in front of hundreds or thousands of marketers.

So, you can probably understand, when it comes to Mike Filsaime I am more than just a little biased.

I am, too, Rich.  I've spoken with Mike on several occasions.  My strongest impression of him is that of a really nice guy with a big heart who has helped many people.  But there's 2 things you don't seem to be quite comprehending here:

  1. That makes him a good salesman and then, quite possibly, a good friend.  It doesn't mean that the people who wrote on your blog were wrong.
  2. It doesn't address the fact that you called those who didn't get your sales pitch "idiots" for being conditioned by sales tactic and techniques that have been heavily used by some of the people from whom you've learned and with whom you've worked.

That's all people were saying and they brought up Mike as the most obvious example that came to mind.  They didn't expect that you'd get all distracted and twist the whole affair into a defense of Mike no more than you expected they'd get offended at you for suggesting they, and others in their midst, are idiots for still believing that PLR and MRR can be profitable.

But I am not only friends with Mike Filsaime because of what he’s done for me. In fact, there’s a bigger reason. I’ve got massive respect for Mike, he’s and I are very different types of people - in fact, sometimes I wish I acted a little more like Filsaime.

Mike’s an action oriented guy that gets things done fast. It’s that quick “get it done” quality that makes Mike one of the most successful guys in our industry and someone I admire.

Rich, Mike is doing well and knows who is friends are.  Commenters on your blog wanted you to address the fact that some of those from whom you've learned and with whom you've worked are partly responsible for conditioning those to whom you clearly referred to as "idiots" and, unfortunately, as I'd said earlier, you're attempting to supply the solution to a problem titled, "Mike is a bad guy."

And that wasn't the problem.  The problem lay in your having triggered it all.

Now, I am not going to defend every product he’s ever produced, it’s not my job to, and that’s not how I judge someone. I am also not going to defend his good reputation because a few like to question it. Anyone can do a google search on Mike, and make up there own mind.

A Google search is not the definitive measure by which one should make up their mind.  I hope you don't tell that to your high-paying clients.

I think I would NOT be a friend to Mike to allow this blog post to go off topic in such a way where the facts are just not stated correctly and I wanted to let my readers know that I think Mike's products are great I happen to know he really cares about his customers and the value he create for them.

You would NOT be a friend to Mike if you do not take responsibility for having called your unconverted prospects "blind, idiots" for doing what Mike, and others, had once been doing and/or selling themselves.  These "blind, idiots" saw (and continue to see) PLR and MRR putting food on the table TODAY.  And while your teaching might be of immense value, they see it putting food on the table TOMORROW and, by nature, people struggle with "faith" and tend to gravitate towards that which they can put their hands on TODAY.

Imagine you are faced with a hungry animal that has a rack of lamb in its mouth.  Your job, in essence, is to convince that hungry animal that it will have X times more food DELIVERED to it day-after-day for many years to come if it just drops the small amount of food in its mouth TODAY.  That's not easy.  And blaming the hungry masses is not the way to do it.

He’s one of the good guys and I refuse to have a few point to one out of his over 100 products as proof of anything.

It wasn't proof of anything.  It was a point-of-fact that made it possible for your readers, and therefore, POTENTIAL CLIENTS, to question what they found to be a massive discrepancy in your characterization of PLR and MRR users as "blind idiots."  Mike Filsaime did what any experienced marketer should have done.  He groomed his lists and continually refined them down to smaller and smaller lists of more capable people who were willing to pay more for certain kinds of information not everyone else could use.

That wasn't the problem.

The problem started when you referred to all those "left behind", the ones who couldn't make the cut and who either couldn't use or afford the next level of guidance as "blind idiots."

To put it in terms you've used and can, therefore, hopefully understand, "Am I the only one seeing this?"  Or better yet, since you trust Mike and Jay so much, why don't you go ask THEM if it was a good idea to call ANYONE an idiot... that is, without having the solution to their idiocy immediately for sale and at a price they could afford.

Tsk, tsk.. shame on you.  As a marketer, you should have, at least, had a solution for their idiocy.

(Wilber, quoted in "Rational Mysticism" by John Horgan): "You get this experience: 'Oh my God! I am one with God! Oh, this is amazing! Nobody's EVER had this experience in the entire history of the universe!' But the personality that you had before you got your satori is the personality you're stuck with. If you're a geeky little toad, then you're gonna be a geeky little toad that thinks he's God. And then it's going to be really hard to get rid of your geeky toadness, because nobody can tell God what to do... There's nothing wrong with having a healthy ego; it helps you get things done in the world. But when gurus proclaim themselves to be perfect masters no longer bound by human ethics, things start to get very, very ugly.

It happens all the time. Not SOME of the time. ALL the time."

Sam Freedom"s Internet Marketing Controversy Blog

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