Today, I was approached by Scott, an Internet marketer, to participate in a DVD project he was putting together of various real estate gurus. He said he was looking for someone that was an “expert” in “subject to investing”. I asked how he found me. He said he had heard of me from the Internet presumably based on titles I have written and recorded on the subject.
He was polite and pleasant but, once again, my guard was up. I told him I was very careful on who I would associate with or attach my name to. He offered to send me an email detailing his project. I saw some of the names on his list. A few I recognized, a few I didn’t.
I did some investigating into Scott’s related projects on the Internet. The term “real estate guru” came up. The first thing I thought to myself is I am not a “real estate guru”. Another thing I realized is I don’t even want the title of being a “real estate guru” because of the image it conjures up in recent years.
A lot of what I have seen in the real estate information business is sleazy, hyped, and unprofessional and caters to the poor man’s mindset and priorities in life.
My books and audio programs are steady sellers and income-generators but nowhere near “best-selling” status where I am “getting rich” off of the information business (at least not yet…)
In any case, one of the reasons I started Ascend Beyond Publishing was to create the credibility, platform, and distribution channel to publish my own works whatever interests that might be. In the last few years, I have focused on my entrepreneurial and real estate investing experiences and research. Sure, I write some promotional descriptions for my titles but I would not consider them overly-hyped up and they are certainly not over-priced. If anything, most of my products are probably under-priced compared to most of the real estate information industry.
Being approached by an Internet information marketer is, of course, flattering. But at the same time, I realized I probably did not want to participate in his or most other people’s projects because I cannot control what my name or “The TurnKey Investor” brand would be attached to.
I went to a website which provided a list of reputable and not-so-reputable real estate gurus. My name was not on that list. And I thought to myself, that was fine with me. Because on that list of 40 or so names, there was only a small handful of those people I would want my name associated with. The rest of the names I could do without for one reason or another. Some are not necessarily sleazy or don’t provide useful information. Some I simply do not know, don’t care to know, or don’t agree with what they say or promote.
At the end of the day, I regard myself more as an entrepreneur/businessman who happens to be knowledgeable (and perhaps “expert” occasionally) in what I do. But I hate and refuse the “guru” title to the degree I have avoided participating in those activities that might reinforce that notion.
I speak and teach locally, sometimes nationally. However, I don’t get invited a lot because I don’t “work” or promote myself in the the seminar or “guru” circuit at all. And I have no plans to ever do so in that arena. I don’t do a lot of hype and I don’t have a lot of high-end, pricey products that I could easily split with most promoters. Basically, promoters would not make that much money off of me because I am not a “guru player”.
I am actually the product of many high-end seminar products but I also had to deal with some of the sleaze along the way. Being a customer is one thing because I can choose to spend my money the way I want to. But that doesn’t mean I want to play that game.
For now, I feel good about having the title of “real estate investor”, “real estate author”, or “real estate entrepreneur”. But keep the “guru” title away from me at all costs. I am 40 years old. There are other things I want to become and be known for but it is certainly not being some real estate or seminar “guru”.
That means, I will have to politely turn Scott down. I could probably get my name and my titles out in a much bigger way but I just don’t think I can stand my name sitting next to any sleazy guru’s name. No way.