Charlatans

I always stay up really late.  I like to work until awful hours of the night, and then watch a recorded episode of ‘Jersey Shore’ or ‘The Office’ to wind down before I go to sleep (watching guidos has a calming effect on me).  At 3:15am last night, my blood pressure instantly skyrocketed because right as I turned on the TV, this quote rattled out of Anthony Morrison during his infomercial:

A lot of people say to me… ‘What if I don’t want to spend any money to get started?  Is there any way I can get started and not spend money?’  And the answer to that is yes.  I have some techniques in this book that can show you how to advertise, drive traffic and customers to your website so you can make money without spending a single penny.

And one of those things is Twitter.  We hear about Twitter all the time, it’s everywhere you go, you see something about Twitter, right?  You can turn your Twitter account into an automatic machine that’s just driving traffic and customers to your website all day long.  Because there are millions of people on Twitter, right?  So it’s real easy to reach those people if you know the techniques.  And that’s exactly what I teach in this book.  Same thing with Facebook, Myspace, and everything else.

Anthony Morrison is lying.  Whatever positive takeaways his book might contain are negated by the statement in bold.  Anyone who has spent a decent chunk of time on Twitter can assure you that he is wrong.

Let’s set aside the ridiculous notion that it’s “easy” to reach millions of people on Twitter, and just focus on the assertion that you can make money through the site.  I know a few people who have tens of thousands of followers on Twitter.  I know one person who has almost a million followers.  None of them have ever claimed that Twitter is a good way to make money.  Why?  Because people do not use Twitter to help decide on what purchases to make.  They are not in a buyer’s state of mind, unlike when they’re using Google to find a solution to their problem and are much more likely to make a purchase.  Even if you’re posting affiliate links, the click-thru rate is going to be 10% at the very high end.  Conversion to sales?  Way lower.  Do the math, and you’ll find that it’s a waste of your time.

Not surprisingly, Anthony has just a little over a thousand followers… With that kind of following, it’s no wonder he’s rolling in profitable traffic!  Let’s follow his lead!  But first, let’s see if we can read some of his meaningless tweets without having a cerebral hemorrhage.

Look, I know there are always going to be con artists in every industry.  It’s a fact of life.  I try not to get mad about this stuff, but I can’t help it.  I hate seeing these jerks duping people into handing over three easy payments of $19.95 based on promises that I empirically know to be false.  Anthony is not the only guilty party; this has become a golden age for anyone with cursory knowledge of the internet to take advantage of the uninformed.

What’s most aggravating is that the internet truly has the potential to be something wonderful for so many individuals and companies.  With a lot of hard work, it can be a potent tool for earning trust, permission, love, and respect from all over the world…

But why nurture that potential when you can be making some fast and easy $$$?!!!

I’ve told several smaller companies that Twitter is little more than a fun distraction.  I’ve told them to shut down their Facebook accounts.  To focus on the few things that will help them accomplish their goals, and to ignore all the hype.  For many of them, social networks just don’t make much sense for their business.  But the temptation is too great, so they usually do all this stuff anyway.

If you really want to make $$$ on Twitter, follow this guy’s formula.  I guarantee you’ll get instant results.

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Charlie Hoehn is an entrepreneur, TEDx speaker, and online marketing strategist for New York Times bestselling authors. He's written two books: Play It Away (called “The cure to your stress!” by Tony Robbins) and Recession Proof Graduate (over 150,000 downloads). He was the Director of Special Projects for Tim Ferriss, and helped launch The 4-Hour Body, which hit #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and sold over a million copies. He also directed the launch of App Empire, a 6-disc course that earned $2.6 million in revenue in 10 days. Charlie's work has been featured on NPR TED Radio Hour, Forbes, Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, CBS News, FOX Business, Financial Times, Globe and Mail, and many others. He lives in Austin, Texas.

This Post Has 13 Comments

  1. Matt Daniels

    Sadly, one year ago I was exactly one of those dupes that bought into the hype. As soon as this came out, it opened the doors for Mr. Morrison to capitalize on ignorance.

    I suppose the healthy question to ask is what is the new twitter–the band wagon for the “charlatans” to dupe the naive corporate marketers. Iphone Apps? Mobile?

      1. Matt Daniels

        kinda. we paid someone exactly like Morrison to “consult” on a project and use his “expertise” to reach people via twitter.

  2. Angel

    Funny end ¡

    It is nice to finish a post like yours with a bit of humour, after making such a direct critic to Mr. Morrison.

    It is sad that there are still today people selling the tale of the “instant money without any effort/work/investment”. On the other hand, it is nice that there are still people (like you) stating that such vendors are simply lying.

    PD: I realized that you can make even more money if you hit the button four times instead of just three ¡¡¡

  3. jbcrocker1

    Wow right on point, Charlie.

    I was thinking along these lines during Christmas, New Years, and NFL Playoff games. You can tell who the bots and auto-tweeters are when the whole world is doing something (like celebrating a holiday or watching a major sporting event) and they’re sending some garbled tweet about their marketing plan or some quote from a semi-famous dead person. Here’s a great idea – let’s completely automate the SOCIAL internet! That way we can stay “connected” without the effort! Gimme a break…

    The ending post about making $$$ is hilarious :)

    1. charhoehn@gmail.com

      The best part is that Anthony guy’s twitter account is clearly automated and/or outsourced. Just scroll through two pages and you’ll see him repeating himself, over and over.

  4. Angel Vallejo

    Hey, Charlie.

    Hope everything is ok. I’m willing to read new posts from you, and bet am not the only one. Warm regards

  5. Jbow

    I hope you applied the same scrutiny to Ramit’s “Earn $1K On The Side” scheme

  6. Igor Hiller

    Great post. I especially liked the links to Morrison’s inane tweets, even though they made my soul hurt.

    I found your blog through your recession-proof graduate e-book, which I thought was fantastic. Thanks for putting the time into creating it and sharing it for free. Keep up the great work!

  7. Joy Casey

    I like your honesty, sincerity, “thought-ful-ness” and intelligence. :-)

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