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Stop Selling To Me!

by PotPieGirl on May 28, 2009 · 33 comments

I Swear, If One More Person Tries To Get Me To Buy Something….

I’m tired of it!  All these people that claim to want to help me are constantly sending me sales pitch emails for whatever they claim is the “latest and greatest” product of the day.  What’s with that??!?!  I get SO frustrated!  I mean here I am, trying so hard to make this work with very little money to invest – and I am bombarded with all these emails offering me yet another product to buy.  I swear, I am going to start emailing these marketers back and give them a piece of my mind!  I’ve had it!

Tell Me, Does That Sound Familiar?

Yes, perhaps I went a little over the top in my intro paragraph, but thing is – I’ve really been there.  That state of mind plagued me when I was trying to make sense out of all this (and when I had very few cents to spend).  I had this inner rage brewing – like a ticking time-bomb – and it was scary.  It seemed there was this magic answer out there that no one was telling me – BUT apparently, the “answer” WAS inside whatever product they were promoting to me that day.

Tick…. Tick…. Tick….

SOOOO Frustrated by Internet Marketing!

WHY wouldn’t anyone just HELP ME out of the goodness of their heart?  Why did all help and “answers” come with a price tag?  And worse yet, how the heck would I know what is something good to buy…. or yet another solution to even more confusion?!??!

Tick… Tick…. Tick….

I was very close to becoming way too cynical and jaded by this internet marketing industry that I almost decided to quit.  Thank God I had a few minor changes in mindset that helped me so very much.  The frustration was gone, my determination was back…..and my cynical attitude was relieved.

Disclaimer: I’m NOT Picking On Anyone

Let me say that again… I am NOT picking on anyone here.  If anything, I am picking on myself as I relive a place I have been during my time here in online marketing.   Believe it or not, some people get mad at me.  Some folks send me some not-so-nice emails.  Within limits, I try and respond to them all.


Because these people are feeling something that I am all too familiar with from not too long ago.


In my opinion, frustration, cynicism, and desperation are killers -and I think it’s a mind set we all have experienced at one time or another in our lives (not just with internet marketing).  Bottom line is, we have to learn how to shake that mindset off so we can move forward productively and with a healthy attitude towards the business we are building (and with life in general).

Hey, when you’re trying to change your life in this great big unknown called the internet, it’s scary.  You don’t have much of an industry-related gut instinct to trust yet.  Your fear of failure is MAJOR….and we also tend to be our own worst critic, don’t we?

To me, it was like the few months before I had my first child (who, by the way, turned 21 today and is getting married this Saturday!!!!)

When I was expecting, it seemed EVERYONE had advice, knew what I needed to buy, what kind of bottles were “best”, what style of parenting was “best”, when “good babies” should sleep thru the night if they are mothered properly.  Heck, turns out that if my child wasn’t potty-trained by two years-old, I was a flat out FAILURE as a mother.

Talk about PRESSURE! As we moms now know, there is no “right” way.  You do what is best at the moment (and with a long-term view in mind) and try to do what works for your child and for your family.

Guess what?  My daughter was over 3 years old before the stubborn little thing decided to become fully potty-trained (AND we had to bribe her with a trip to see Mickey Mouse) – and she is now a happy, healthy, beautiful, and intelligent young woman.  However, *I* got to see every single restroom in Disney World that year….hahaha!

Ok, back on topic….

How To Shake It Off

Once I realized ONE thing…. a lot started to change for me with online marketing.

I was taking it all wayyyyyy too personally.

I felt as if every promotional email was directed at ME, and ONLY me.  It never crossed my emotional mind that those emails went out to thousands of people….AND some of those people might actually be glad to learn about that product.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that I am bombarded by marketing every second of every day in “real life”.  From the moment I wake up and see the brand name on our alarm clock, the commercials in between the morning news shows (or heck, the news shows themselves!) to the moment my eyes close at night, I am being marketed to.

So are you.

So why are we so sensitive to the constant marketing from those we gave permission to market to us?  Yes, when we opt in, we gave our permission until we choose to opt OUT.  (I don’t know about you, but I don’t recall the cable company EVER calling me and asking if I wanted commercials with the TV channels I pay for each month)

Know why these marketing emails bother us so much?  Because we ARE sensitive about it.  For most of us, this is a very sensitive topic.  We are trying to make a big change in our lives, we are terrified of failure, and we feel very alone in our endeavors, don’t we?  I know I sure did.  What was worse for me was the sting I felt each time someone would promote a product to me that I wanted – BUT, I sure as heck couldn’t afford it at that time.

It was like a knife stab each time reminding me that I was broke with a capital “B-R-O-K-E”.


It was like yet another not-so-subtle reminder of how close to failure I felt.

Anyone else feel or have felt this way?  (Oh, someone please say yes so I don’t look like a total idiot here spilling my guts….lol!)

Businesses Are Not Run Emotionally

Once I decided to stop running (or uh, growing) my business from an emotion state of mind, so much of the frustration disappeared.  I also cut the other marketers some slack because most of them were just trying to make a living, too.

Then I realized something much more helpful to me…

No matter WHO sent the email, WHAT they were promoting, HOW they promoted it…. They all WERE teaching me something!

I opened the email – WHY? (write it down so I remember it)

I read the email – WHY? (write it down….)

I clicked the link – WHY? (write it down….)

I deleted the email without even reading it – WHY? (yup, write it down)

I opened the email and opted out – WHY? (Yep, you guessed it – write it down)

When someone emails you and gets you to take an action (whether you buy or not), you are learning something. Even if you detest everything that marketer does… GOOD!  You are learning what you never want to do.

I have become about 98% immune to the products being promoted (unless it’s way cool or I think it can help my subscribers out), but I am 125% aware of HOW I am being marketed TO.

You wanna talk about some great free internet marketing education – you can’t beat this!

This mindset allowed me to start growing and building my business with a professional mindset.  Not only am I learning for free from all these other marketers – I am also learning the power of the consumer and the power of my own good business judgment.

No more emotional reactions.  No more sensitivity.  I am in charge of the current state AND the future of my online business.  No one can bring me down unless I let them.

Let the frustration go…. it’s an energy zapper.  Save that energy for positive thoughts AND positive ACTIONS.  Don’t give anyone the power to cause you to react emotionally to a business situation.

Before long, you’ll be saying, “C’mon… SELL TO ME!  Bring it on – Let’s see what you’ve got!!”


Charlie Davis May 28, 2009 at 3:58 am

This title in my TweetDeck was a little scary, and I tried to think if I offended you with some offer. Once I read it I concurred completely. And said “whew,at least she isn’t mad at me.” I know that was not your intention and, it just may have been my late-night sensitivity. I’m not looking for you to post this, just to consider the effect.

PotPieGirl May 28, 2009 at 4:11 am

Oh, Charlie… I’m so sorry! No cause for alarm….there is no culprit here in any way, shape or form.

Besides, I’m not a “personal attack” kinda gal =)

Oliver May 28, 2009 at 7:17 am

Great post!

Haha, funny, I went through the same “transformation”. :) And now I save all eMails that I think are great to my swipe file. :) Even if you don’t intend to buy.. the person sending this is still a marketer and you can learn from her or him without buying anything from him or her.

Brian May 28, 2009 at 7:25 am

Ah, but it got you to click, didn’t it? That just reinforces the lesson. :)

Tyla Mac May 28, 2009 at 7:28 am

I do enjoy when “gurus” try to sell to me because I can study their methods.Some of them have dropped me from their lists when I couldn’t afford to buy any of their $997 products but that’s okay. I’ve dropped a few of them too when I realized that there was never any real content in their emails,only hard sells of the latest product that 27 other gurus were also trying to sell me.

I’m a skeptical person by nature and I hate hype-filled sales pitches that waste my time and insult my intelligence. So I figure when someone can sell to me then they are the ones I should be learning from.

I laughed out loud at the “good baby” analogy. That must be a southern thing. My mother and grandmother always told me I was a good baby until I was 1 year old and then I started talking.

BTW-Welcome back! I hope your health is back on track and congrats on your new daughter-in-law.

Stephan May 28, 2009 at 7:43 am

Good morning PPG!!!
Thats was a cool part of your Realityshowstory….You were totally bullseye on that!!!
The funny thing is, just by reading it, it bring back all of the BS everynewbie went thru in the conscious…and obviously make us more aware of all of those SS…;) in the future….
Well put!!!

Thanks for sharing…;)

Candice May 28, 2009 at 4:08 pm

All I can say is “Thank you, thank you, thank you………

At least I know now that I’m not crazy for thinking all this stuff!

And thank you for putting it all in perspective…….I needed that!

Well done PotPieGirl!

win-win-win May 28, 2009 at 4:49 pm

Nope, you are the only one that has ever felt that way.

Except perhaps my computer when I threaten to throw it across the room.

Learning from other’s mistakes is wisdom. Thank you for the lemonade recipe.

Paul Hughes May 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm

Hi Jennifer,
I discovered your site through Travis, aka the Bum Marketer. I’ve been a subscriber of his for over 1 1/2 years and find his messages insightful and inspiring. Even subscribed to WA for over 1 year, but gas and food became a bigger priority. But turning me on to you has been the best. I finally realized I can do this!!!! The progress has been slow. Still dealing with information overload, and I wish I could afford your $47 dollar course. Just wanted to let you know that it’s refreshing to finally find somebody who seems genuine (I have no doubt you are, but I’ve developed a healthy cynicism lately) and I will put your advice to work and just “be all about it”, as Zig Ziglar would say. Please don;t let your success go to your head. There are enough “gurus” out there…need somebody who is one of us…and I think you are. Keep it up. Thanks and stay tuned.

Richard R Evans May 28, 2009 at 8:19 pm

Yes, I am scared. Have had a successful health insurance business for the last 20 years or so, but now business is way down and the government is taking my business away and I have no retirement. I am 62 years old and my wife has no idea how bad our finances are and yes I feel exactly like you do in your blog. I got your program and belong to WA but like you said in your blog, it feels like everyone else knows some secret that I don’t. I think your program is starting to help, but have a hard time understanding the lingo sometimes. Also someone will say do it this way and then someone will say exactly the opposite. So it is hard to sort things out.

When I got involved in the Health Insurance business I had no other options. I had to make it work or my family didn’t eat. I remember my first sale. It took 3 weeks. That was a turning point and from there things grew. At one point I ranked #1 in Michigan and #20 in the USA for individual sales for one of the largest Insurance companies. (it is now part of UnitedHealth)

That is where I feel I am today again. I know at this point in my life, this has to work for me and I know it will because I don’t see any other options. I know that I will figure it out with your help, as you have already helped a lot. You seem to really care as do the others you have recommended. Someday I am sure we will meet and till then, good luck to you and your family.

Cynthia May 29, 2009 at 12:12 am

I just gave you a thumbs up in Dean Hunt’s best blog poll. And I noticed that you are miles ahead at number one! The above thoughtful, kind (in a tough love kind of way), and v. useful post is the reason why you are up there PPG. Travis sent me a great email today too about the 3 *rules* of landing pages. I always open mail from Travis and mail from PPG. And I really like the way you give a clear intro first so I know what the post is about and whether to proceed. Thankyou

Hisham May 29, 2009 at 11:22 am

Wonderful post and nice tips, I just found your blog, I will add it to my list of 100 blog using CommentLuv for my daily comment coffee time!

Priest McLane May 29, 2009 at 2:13 pm

Good morning Jenn! Love your wit during these mornings I open my email’s and read your tid bits.

I’ve been doing this for a while now! I’ve even felt that I was losing touch with my mind set when I first started out in IM and those memories were fading as I try to ponder on what I was thinking, why I opted in or bought a product, and how the process of a beginner had got me to where I am today. I had began paying closer attention to the how and why’s I opened, read, or trashed, and dumped a newsletter or opt in. In fact I have a spam alias account that I use for this purpose entirely lol. I opt in to anything I am even remotely interested in and let my curious george monkey out to play for the time being… paying close attention to what reasons I am opting in, why I read, and what makes me delete, opt out or totally ignore.

mark keeler May 29, 2009 at 5:57 pm

Jennifer, I thought I was “unique” and was the only one that felt this way. Honestly, I love all the free content and I am able to sift through what I want and don’t want. I need to unsubscribe to about 100 or so free mailing lists because I cannot keep up with them.

Jaebird88 May 29, 2009 at 6:09 pm

Another great and useful article. I help offline businesses use the power of the internet to boom their businesses. While I knew your information, I certainly wasn’t putting to use. I can now do that and teach it to my clients as well.

Thanks for the clarity. I guess I just needed a little help with my lightbulb moment.


Jaebird88s last blog post..A Successful Business Requires 3 Secret Ingredients

Mickey May 30, 2009 at 3:10 am

This is it – it’s like they are all telling me that there is one more thing that I need to learn to be successful. Maybe – I should keep doing what I have learned – and keep doing it. I don’t think I’ve missed something – I just think I should keep pushing on…

Spirit May 31, 2009 at 2:43 am

The way I see it is all these emails let you know what is out there and how people promote their stuff. So for people still early on the learning curve, it can be useful. To some extent :)
I learned one trick which is to selectively delete emails without reading. I could say ok I am going to read 2 and delete 8, so my mailbox got 10 empty spots. Or something like that. Depending on what I want to read at this moment. So I am the one deciding, not them.

Spirits last blog post..The Spirit

John Leith May 31, 2009 at 5:18 am

G’day Jennifer,

Great post, really hit a nerve!

Most of the frustration for me is the constant barrage of emails from the same “group” that only ever want to sell something, rarely/never offer any free/helpful advice and all cross promote each other.

Those are quickly weeded out so that I can try to learn from the ones, like your good self, who balance teaching with selling…

that’s the model I feel comfortable with and try to follow.

So yes, learn from the ones you admire and unsubscribe from the ones you don’t. That helps to get rid of the negative feelings and reinforces the positive.

Hope your health is good and the wedding’s a great success,

John Leiths last blog post..Saving Money With Green Bags.

Steve May 31, 2009 at 3:15 pm

I felt the same way when I first started to try and make money with adsense.

I signed up for every newsletter related to it, I even bought a few ebooks that promised to show me how to make a fulltime income using it.

At first I thought I had wasted a year of my life testing and failing, of the sites I created only 1 was making money and the total profit I made was $110 for the year. (that’s 0.30 per day).

Without that learning curve and change in the way I do business I wouldn’t be making what I am today. (5 figures).

Jen this is my first time reading your blog and I have to say, well done. Great writing style and advice. You’ve accomplished your goal, I have subscribed to your newsletter and I’m following you on Twitter :)

Great Job.

Steves last blog post..Lump Sum Lottery Winnings

Mmfh June 3, 2009 at 6:24 pm

Hello Jennifer,
You really hit the nail on the head with this post!

I now know for sure that you did start out just like myself and felt the same over load and sickness for all the lists and all the people trying to sell me the trick to internet wealth!
You and Travis have the only constructive material I’ve seen and I always open up whatever I see from both of you!!

Thanks for doing what you do!


Mikael @ Retire Rich Roadmap June 4, 2009 at 8:29 pm

Great topic for a post Jen.

I think we have all been there and the funny thing is that we either quit the game after spending way to much money or we’ll travel to “the other side” and end up being the ones sending out those emails (in one form or another).

Just like we’ll (strangely enough) all have to learn most of this the hard way I think that something is making us go though this process as well.

If we had a little more “backbone” we would just ignore the emails and not spent a dime that wasn’t a part of our overall plan (… oh, did we forget to plan?? *LOL* ).

As for myself I’ve traveled from wanting to buy it all, to being pissed to now collecting the emails because many of them are brilliant and I can use their techniques for selling my own (and others) stuff :)


Sylvia Santos June 5, 2009 at 2:34 pm

I know how you feel. I feel the same way. Sometimes you feel as if you are doing the best thing but then end up the opposite.

Times like these I reach for a snickers! :)

Wess Stewart June 6, 2009 at 12:26 am

Interesting…I’m just glad I’m not the only one who looks at things that way…sort of.

Only now I find myself saying ‘ok, look, I know you just want to make money off of this, let’s stop pretending’. I’ve even started replying to emails of stealth marketers saying things like ‘good try…how’s that conversion rate working for this method?’

But hey, I’m evil like that. :D

Wess Stewarts last blog post..SEO Smart Links: The Poor Man’s Ninja Affiliate

Deb June 10, 2009 at 5:20 am

Reading your posts makes me feel normal. I spent so much time searching through emails and freebies, spending a bit here and there because I didn’t want to miss out. I didn’t want to be the only one “not getting it”.. whatever “it” was. There Had to be a secret in there somewhere.

My head hurt. My gut was full of anxiety much of the time because I wanted “it” so much.. I had petrified myself from taking action because it might be “wrong” and my dear spouse, who doesn’t really understand any of this, would wonder if I was done with this project yet. If not, then are we rich yet? What could I tell him?

The truth of the matter is that it takes time, effort , a system and patience with oneself;,the process, and the belief that there IS enough time.
A sense of humor doesn’t hurt. Thanks for your clear voice and not filling my inbox! I have to search for your emails. They bring value. Thanks…

Jodi June 11, 2009 at 4:47 am

Hi Jennifer I just found you on Squidoo and I am reading everything that you have written and watching all of your videos. Thank you for all of the free information that you make available to the poor (literally) newbies out in internet land!

Suzy S. June 19, 2009 at 2:52 pm

Agreed if they want you to look at your product / review it they should have the minimum courtesy of offering the product for free.

I have gotten a lot of traffic from your site for a small mention you made for my ClickBank affiliate product.
Thank You for that!

Mike August 3, 2009 at 2:12 pm

I am a member of WA and also OWM but what I have found is that there is far too much information and jargon. If only someone could come up with a ‘blueprint’ step by step long term action plan then I think that would work. (thinks maybe that is what I should do?)
We newbies are so swamped with offers ideas information etc it is absolutely overwhelming and I am sure that is why most either give up or don’t make it and then give up. Just a little thought for all the gurus.

Ken August 4, 2009 at 9:40 am

Hi Jennifer,
I loved your article. What used to get me the most was how all these “MULTI MILLION DOLLAR” a year Gurus were making ALL THAT MONEY per year, WHY would they need to CHARGE you some astronomical fee for their advice? At this point they should be doing more for FREE to help newbies and others trying to “make it online”. What…they can’t live on $10 or $20 MILLION a Year. I could live off the Interest on $1 million. (LOL)

Linda Pogue August 10, 2009 at 4:40 am

This post struck a chord with me. At this point, I am removing myself from all IM mailing lists that offer nothing but sales pitches over and over again. I don’t mind seeing the sales pitch (and sometimes will buy) if I at least get some quality content for free first. For those IM’ers who have not had the curtesy of using a ‘Remove me from your list’ type link, I simply block them. My time is too precious to waste reading content that is nothing but a sales pitch, and often a poor one at that.

Jennifer, I must say that I have never felt that way about your mailings, and open them right away, since they almost always brighten my day with new information or encouragement.

I have added your blog to my new blog. I will totally understand if you decide to remove this or not publish it. If you have time, visit me at http://internet-marketing-tips-and-tricks.blogspot.com/.

Thanks for all you do for those of us struggling to get into this field. God bless you and your family.

John Sizemore September 24, 2009 at 2:55 am

Absolutely amazing! Yes! I feel that way right now. I have been marketing since June of this year and I have still not made a sale. However, I know I will never give up since I just enjoy everything about the internet too much. Jennifer, you have been a total inspiration so far and I have enjoyed every one of you articles. Please keep it up. Thanks!

rahul September 30, 2009 at 12:34 pm

i learnt the exact same thing the hard way, wish i could have found your blog earlier!

Donny December 1, 2009 at 3:13 am

Hey there PotPirGirl,
Let me just say…..You know how to hit the nail on the head”……… Today I bought your OWM set. Believe it or not, I have read through the whole thing in just one day. Needless to say I am more confused that ever, but, I think once I let it settle in, I can start back at the beginning and make something work out of it.

I have been the “target” of alot of those marketing campaigns you’ve described here. I have bought a bunch of them too. The one thing I have to say is yours seems to have more practical *instructions* than the rest. Most of them talk in circles……..I know I am gonna need some help along the way and it’s good to know there are folks like you out there….

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