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Fake Internet Gurus in the Internet Jungle

Never Believe Wild Promises

Offers to Teach You How to Get to #1 in Google Search Results

If you have been on the Internet for a while and have purchased anything, it is almost a certainty that you have received e-mails promoting seminars or courses from fake internet gurus that include a statement that goes something like this, “Learn how to get the number one spot in Google search results!” Don’t you believe it!

Advertising in any form is always about manipulation through words and how they are cleverly put together to get you to do what they want. If you analyze the statement, they are not promising that you will actually get to the number one spot in Google search results….only that they will TEACH you how to get the number one spot in Google search results. If you don’t get there . . . it’s on you – not them.

I can teach you how to get the #1 spot right now, in one sentence: Get more traffic and links to your Webpage than all your competitors on the Internet. That is the secret – simple, right?  WRONG! The challenge is HOW to get more traffic and HOW to get more links to your website than everyone else on the Internet who is offering the same types of products or services. The devil is always in the details….those pesky little details!

There are many tried and true techniques to raise your PR (Page Rank); but, even when you have learned the techniques and diligently apply them month after month, getting ranked #1 and staying there is extremely difficult.  Everyone wants to do that . . . and only a few actually succeed.

Any place on the first page of Google is practically sacred ground. No one – absolutely NO ONE – will ever fulfill a guarantee to make YOU number one. Don’t buy into that wild promise. Reaching that hallowed first page takes time, hard work, and patience.

As I said before, there are many tried and true techniques to raise your PR. It is important to learn them and apply them in order to increase your visibility on the Internet. The thing the gurus do not tell you is that information on the best techniques is actually free on the Internet, if you are willing to look for it.

The problem is that with today’s social mentality of “I want it NOW,” the majority of people do not want to take the time to dig it out for themselves. If that is your mindset and you are unwilling to take the time or lack the patience to seek out the free information, there are many books and e-books available that can help you. You can also buy a training course; or, attend seminars, teleseminars, or webinars that are offered by legitimate gurus on almost every subject. With their guidance (if you follow through and do the work) you can raise your visibility and page ranking; and possibly, even make it to page one on Google.  BUT, choose the gurus carefully – if they are legitimate, they will not guarantee to get you to #1 on Google. They will only provide the tools. The rest is up to you.

Offers for Lucrative Joint Venture Deals

This is another wild promise that some fake Internet gurus will make. “I will teach you how to get lucrative joint-venture deals!” The reason this one works is because there are lucrative joint-venture deals to be had on the Internet. But…the chance of an “unknown newbie” getting one is another story.

High search engine rankings and smart joint ventures are two favorites in the Internet Jungle. They are the gold rings….that everyone wants to grab.

Joint ventures are absolutely possible, but finding one is at the same level of difficulty as catching that golden ring on the merry-go-round when you were a child. It can be done…but, you have to prepare for the opportunity with a lot of stretching and practice.

The phrase, joint venture, causes well-established Internet marketers as well as brand new Internet marketers to get all excited. It is common knowledge that a joint venture is probably the fastest and easiest way to build a large opt-in list, to get established or become better established in the Internet jungle, and to make a lot of money,.

But, let’s be practical and look at the hard cold facts. To attract an established Internet marketer with a substantial list, you would have to be willing to give him/her 100% of the profit on a product that you developed or had someone develop for you – and the market value would have to be at least $100. It is very likely that the only thing that you would gain from your initial joint venture is a much larger opt-in list of your own. If you haven’t heard it yet, you will hear it often, “The money is in the list” – so that particular gain is very, VERY valuable; but, the bank won’t credit it to your account.

If you work hard, follow the rules, pay your dues, learn how to approach established Internet marketers, understand the legalities of joint venture agreements, etc., you may have the opportunity to land a lucrative joint venture – eventually. Or, even better, you may become a well-established marketer that others seek out and willingly give you 100% of their profits.

But, neither of those is going to happen today…next week…or even next year, unless….you are incredibly smart, you develop an amazing product, you have a phenomenal work ethic, you do everything right, you have laser focus with no distractions, you have no fear, you go after it with the tenacity of a bulldog, and are very VERY lucky….even then, there is no guarantee.

Offers for “Shortcuts”

Shortcuts can be amazing when they work. If they are well-traveled and time-tested, they are invaluable. But, in my experience, shortcuts often end up taking more time and costing more money in the long run than if I had taken a well-traveled path.

 Buying Lists

One common shortcut that is offered by fake Internet gurus is – how to build an opt-in list with very little work. They will lead you to believe that it is not necessary to offer a nice incentive to people, or write and market articles and e-books, or write regular posts for a blog, or actively participate in forums. They say, “There is an easier way….which I can show you. For a small price you can begin building your list NOW!”

Since you have probably already learned that building an opt-in list really does involve a lot of patience and hard work, you may be very tempted to take the shortcut that they are offering. This is my advice: DO NOT go down that road. There is about a 99.9% chance that the shortcut they will show you for that very small price is how to BUY a list.

Advertisements are everywhere for companies who will sell you an opt-in list that they claim contains names and email addresses of people who have already opted in….some of them are double opt-ins.

The list will cost you anywhere from $.03 per name and e-mail address up to $.30 each. According to those who are selling the lists, the price depends on whether the list contains names and addresses that are of the single opt-in variety or the double opt-in variety.

This offer has a lot of emotional appeal; but, my advice is to take a giant step backward and think about what you would be buying.

Opt-in lists are names and email addresses of real people – like you and me. Does it make any sense that individuals would deliberately provide their names and email addresses for the purpose of being put on a list that would be sold to anyone who is willing to pay for it? I certainly wouldn’t do it and I am sure you wouldn’t do it either.

With the escalating problem of identity theft and the social awareness of the dangers involved, people do not readily give out their names and email addresses so that the information can be sold. The fact is that there is absolutely no such thing as a legitimate opt-in list that you can buy. Even if the people on the list did opt-in to some list – they didn’t opt-in to your list.  If you send e-mails to people who have not given you permission to do so, you could be found guilty of violating the CAN-SPAM Act and face a serious fine.

Article Submission Software

Another shortcut that you may be offered by these fake Internet Gurus is automated article submission software.  If you have not yet attempted to write and submit articles to article banks, you should know that it is incredibly time consuming. As a result, it can be very tempting to look for a shortcut to this process.

Bulk article submission was a tactic that worked until the end of 2012, when Google, Yahoo and MSN developed search algorithms that have a much greater emphasis on trust and usage data. As a result of those changes, article submission sites are no longer very effective for search engine rankings. If you were to put it to the test, you would find that only 5% of the major articles sites can help you very much with page rank – the other 95% of article submission sites will do nothing for you.

I do not want to discourage you from using article marketing as one of your strategies. There are some very good legitimate forms of article marketing such as: guest blogging or guest authorship, and guest writing, plus quality article submission sites such as Ezine Articles, Buzzle, Go Articles, and Article Dashboard.

(Side note: Ezine Articles will not allow you to publish an article on their site that has been published anywhere else on the Internet – and they always check.)

Unfortunately article marketing has been tainted by an ever-increasing number of poorly-written articles being submitted and then re-submitted through article spinning and article republishing – all of which has been encouraged by the promoters of bad article submission software. Let me give you an example:

Johnny Smith decides that he is going to use article marketing to drive traffic to his new Website. He sits down and writes a rather useless, poorly written article about pet sitting and includes links back to his “Pet Care” Website, which he is trying to get ranked. He decides that instead of just publishing the article on his site, he will submit it to a lot of article directories, article portals, article resource sites, article publishers – or whatever they are calling them these days. But, to make it easier on himself, he purchases an article spinning software for only $299, which will submit his article to all these different places for him.  

There are many others like this young man who are glutting the market with trash and making it more difficult for talented writers to get their work noticed; but, the biggest problem with using automated article submission software – even for talented writers –  is that most of the major banks and repositories will not accept submissions that are made with such software. They require that each submission be made by hand and individually posted in order for them to be listed on their sites.

To close out this point, let me offer the following reasons why article submission for SEO is not a very productive link-building tactic and why my word of encouragement is to publish your best articles on your own Website rather than posting on article sites.

  1. Most article sites are not trusted by the search engines, so the chance of getting any real juice from links that you acquire is nil.
  2. If you publish an article on an article site and promote on Facebook, Twitter, etc., the links will go back to the article site – not to your site.
  3. Any links back to the article from other Websites – will (again) be back to the article site – not to your site.
  4. Any search engine traffic that does result from the article will go to the article site. And, even though your link is in the article, readers may or may not click on it (probably won’t).
  5. If you have a great article, you want your readers (followers) to see it – and any juice that flows from it to come to you rather than go to someone else, the bottom line is – keep the good stuff at home.

Publishing your work on articles sites in addition to your own Website is not worth the time and effort because article sites rarely generate much traffic (even the good sites) – and only one copy of an article will be counted by search engines.

Publishing good, informative articles on your own Website and marketing them through press releases and social media, etc. is a proven SEO tactic – use it!

FFA’s (Free for All)

One more shortcut that is not as prevalent as it once was, but I thought I should include it just in case it shows up on your radar, are FFA’s.

Guess I should explain what FFA means (and it is not Future Farmers of America).  It means “Free for All” Websites – also known as FFA Pages.  At first, they appear harmless because they are presented as bulletin boards on which you can post your link or place an advertisement for your Website (similar to classified ads). The spiel is that others will visit, be impressed, and go to your Website. Free advertising sounds really good when you are just getting started on the Internet (or anytime for that matter), but all is not what it seems – don’t believe anything these promoters tell you.

This is particularly appealing to inexperienced new owners of websites who are desperate for traffic. They are willing to try everything and anything to develop a presence on the Internet. Many newbies have been caught in this tricky little trap. They are seduced into thinking that it is free exposure for their Websites – so why not?  Unfortunately, the only real exposure they get is to a flood of unsolicited e-mails (SPAM) – by the ton.

The spam that results from a listing on an FFA page can be so heavy that you may even be forced to close down the e-mail address that you used, which will then result in many lost hours used to notify personal friends, companies, and professional contacts that your e-mail address has changed.

One man tells the following story:

About 10 days ago, I decided to try an FFA site and posted a link to my Website, using one of my regular email addresses. In my naiveté, I thought that the worst thing that could happen was that I would receive a few advertisements from other businesses.  After the first few hundred advertisements showed up, I followed the FFA Page’s instructions on the Remove/Ban procedure. That was a joke . . . because I continued to receive hundreds of more advertisements. The operator of the FFA site was completely unsympathetic, so I contacted the ISP that was hosting it – no luck there either.  Their stance was that by posting a link on the site, I had agreed to receive all the advertisements. The only thing the remove/ban link did was to prevent me from making any future submissions, but did nothing to stop the advertisements.

There are many other similar stories from users who have been caught in this trap and struggled to get loose.  My recommendation is to avoid FFA’s like the plague. Regardless of what they tell you, their purpose is not to support you in your effort to build traffic for your Website.  They have one goal and that is to collect e-mail addresses that can be sold.

If you should choose to take the risk, it is like shouting to the virtual world, “I LOVE SPAM – sock it to me!” You will have opted into a list that will fill up your inbox to overflowing everyday well into the future, or until – out of desperation – you change your e-mail address to make it stop.

We are almost finished with this series – only two or three most postings and a new topic will be introduced.  I hope you have enjoyed the series and will be sure to return for the final few postings.  See you next time . . .

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