We’re #1

Friday, 27 May 2005 at 5:00 am Pacific USA Time.

We’re #1. Every business wants to tell you that, and some will flat-out just tell you we’re the #1 brake specialist in our area code. Everybody can find something they’re the best at in some sort of area or industry! Normally, they pick something honest that they can prove. I once saw a college say they were "Alabama Best Value in Higher Education." Best value?

Something caught my eye recently. There is a guy whose accounts on eBay have been permanently suspended. He hasn’t sold on eBay in nearly a year. And his website said that he’s the "world’s #1 eBay author and speaker." Interesting! He didn’t play it safe and honest by saying he’s the best author and speaker no longer selling… or the best eBay speaker from his particular neighbourhood. He went right for the "you can’t top this!"

So how does one become the world’s #1 author and speaker on a topic? Is it the number of books you publish? After a 5-month delay, his first book just came out. Is it the number of people who have booked you for appearances? His website says his 2005 calendar of events is coming soon, which I read to mean that he has no events to announce yet. Is it the amount of time you’ve been doing some speaking events? He started in late 2003 with his seminars. Other eBay speakers and instructors have been out there for years before that.

In case you’re wondering, I would say that Jim "Griff" Griffith is the #1 eBay speaker for how long he’s been doing it, how well-loved he is, how accurate he is, and how many people he has helped. I would say that Marcia Collier, who wrote eBay For Dummies and many other books, is the #1 eBay author. She has great information, and you can always trust her advice and recommendations. She makes a great speaker too, and Griff has a good book, but I am sticking to my current claims. :)

So it’s unfortunate that someone has to use such a claim to try to make people believe. And when you believe, you are giving him your money. How many people will just believe it just because the statement is made? How many people will ask him to back it up? When he gets up in front of a group and tells them that he was a huge eBay seller but doesn’t sell anymore because he doesn’t feel like it, how many people will ask him why his eBay acccount says that it’s a suspended account? How many people will stand up in front of a seminar crowd and announce that the Emperor isn’t wearing any clothes? So far, none.

You may not be the person who asks, but maybe you will be the person who does more research before buying a book or attending a seminar. Maybe you will research a claim next time without just believing it. Some marketers are liars, and they’re not going to tell you who they are! But you can find out. Do research, ask questions. Watch where you spend your money, and which "experts" you choose to believe.

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Categories: That's Bad Marketing

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