Do you want to get ripped off less? Before listening to someone’s advice, stop for a sec and think about why they’re giving it.
A content marketer is probably going to tell you content marketing is a must. An SEO agency will tell you that SEO fixes everything. Someone who has a sales course is going to tell you how important those skills are to master. A white label agency is going to tell you why outsourcing your web work is the smartest thing you could do.
But can you trust them? Think about this. Let’s imagine I only know how to build websites in WordPress, with a page builder. That’s it – literally the only way I can build a website.
It’s in my best interest for people to believe WordPress is the best choice as a CMS. And that building with a page builder is perfectly valid.
Is it? Maybe. Maybe not. But the truth here is irrelevant – if that’s what my business is based around, you can bet your bottom dollar that’s what I’ll be saying. And whether it’s true or not, it isn’t hard to come up with enough supporting facts and content to make my point really well.
Why do people write business books? Well, most business books are written by someone who wants to promote something. They either want speaking gigs, or they want to sell their coaching services, or they just need authority for some reason. So should you just trust business books?
Why do people write blog posts? Well, most blog posts are written by someone as a way to educate people about their product or service without “selling” to them, or establish a relationship so that eventually they can sell to them, or convince people how important something is. So should you just trust blog posts?
Why do people start podcasts? Well, most podcasts are started so the host can build an audience that trusts them. They often have a course or program of some kind that they’re trying to get people into, and a podcast is a way to do that. So should you just trust podcasts?
Each of these pieces of communication are, ultimately, a marketing device for the creator. Their motivation is to eventually get sales. This means you shouldn’t blindly trust what they’re saying, because the purpose of their content is to make you believe what they want you to believe – whether that’s factual or not.
It’s important to note that not every business book, blog post, or podcast is wrong or false or a rip off. In fact, many are absolutely amazing and useful. Many of the creators, while yes they want sales, they want to achieve those sales ethically, and they are giving you really useful information.
But…. there are also many that aren’t. Their intentions are to get your money. Ethically or not, they don’t care. They release content that supports their stance, but may not be super accurate.
And then you come across their content and think that you need to follow what they’re saying.
“It’s in a book, it must be true”– Some sucker
But this isn’t the case at all. You don’t need to follow anyone.
Stop and think about the motivation behind the content you consume. Is it something that doesn’t seem 100% right to you? Does the creator have a vested interest in you believing them?
So before blindly following advice you see or read, stop and think. Make sure it does actually make sense. Make sure it isn’t just a scammer trying to sell their course.