Well, truth be told, I wrote most of this newsletter on my Blackberry while riding shotgun in a tow truck on Thursday afternoon.

We had to haul my ol’ Maxima 30 miles to a garage after the clutch burnt out while I was driving from Toronto to my house in the country.

I really thought I was going to make it home. Felt like Kramer from that episode of Seinfeld where he takes the car out for a test-drive and tries to drive around on fumes.

Over the last couple of weeks I had known the clutch was going, but I was too stubborn to take it in to get fixed. And I would have made it home if it wasn’t for this meddling hill on the highway.

There I was cruising along at 55mph, imploring ol’ Maxima to hold it together for just another 30 miles.

As we climbed that hill the speed went down and the RPM’s went up.

“C’mon baby”, I whispered to it, “one more ride just like old times”.

But it didn’t work, though she gave me all she could. I got to the top of the hill and she couldn’t even give me 30 miles per hour. And the speed kept dropping till she could go no more.

Fortunately, she’ll be out of the “car hospital” this weekend, and I’ll return to my quest of getting her up to 250,000 miles and 20 years old.

Now I know what you’re thinking.

“Silly Canadian, why don’t you just buy a new car?”

Well, there are several reasons, and one of them gives you a big lesson for your business.

First, it’s not really my car anymore – its the dog’s. And there’s no point in getting a new car with the way he treats the back seat.

Second reason: What, and give up adventures like yesterday?

Third, I drive about 3000 miles per year…so a car is a waste of money to me. No point in having a $60,000 grocery cart.

And finally (and this one has the lesson for you), I’ve got better things to spend my money on anyway, like business class travel to all the Internet marketing seminars I attend.

OK, now you really think I’m a fool, right?

I won’t spend $500 a month on a car payment but I’ll spend $1500 to fly from Toronto to LA for another weekend seminar.

How does that make sense?

Well, it just DOES, to me, anyways. That’s all that matters.

And there’s the business lesson…let me explain…

Nobody really “needs” anything they buy (except for basic food and shelter). The rest of the things we buy are rationalized by our brain.

For some, it’s an expensive car. For others, expensive travel.

For others yet, another $2000 internet marketing course even though they haven’t opened the box of the last $1995 course they bought.

Even when it comes to buying the necessities like groceries you have some folks who can feed a family of 4 for less than $100 per week, and you have guys like my friend Jeff who spend $300 per week at Whole Foods just for himself!

But before you go and congratulate the family of four for spending their money wisely, realize that they are probably spending $200 per month on the daughter’s beauty pageants or son’s baseball travels, or something that you and I might find ridiculous but they have rationalized as a necessity.

And then there’s the old eccentric rich guy in your town, the one who wears 20-year old Dockers and uses coupons at the grocery store, but who also has a brand new $250,000 boat up at his cottage.

Bottom line:

People spend money on what is important to them, and do NOT spend money on what is NOT important to them.

Everyone has their “thing”.

And your business lesson is that you have to…

a) Make sure you are getting your message in front of the right people

b) Stop wasting your time and effort by marketing to people who have no interest in your “thing”

c) Make sure you create a compelling reason for those who are interested to TAKE ACTION

My favorite business author, mean ol’ Dan Kennedy, has said that you can make money with the RIGHT list and AVERAGE copy, but even the world’s BEST copy won’t make you money with the WRONG list.

After all, given my beliefs about Maxima and marketing seminars, you could take me to every car dealer in the city and offer me a tremendous deal on the hottest ride, but I simply will NOT buy.

On the other hand, if you even hint that there is a “can’t miss marketing seminar” happening in Las Vegas in May, I’ll give you my credit card and tell you to sign me up on the spot and book my business class airline ticket…

So let’s finish with one more real world example.

What sounds like a better way to build your business:

1) Pouring time and effort into building up the number of “fans” you have on Facebook?

or

2) Connecting with a joint venture partner who provides similar – but different – products to the same niche market as you and who could instantly become a top affiliate for you?

The answer is obvious, but lure of social media has caused a LOT of internet activity to be devoted to the former rather than the latter.

Listen, while it’s nice to have thousands of fans, you shouldn’t sacrifice time on proven marketing strategies just to build up your numbers on social media. Those are not the best people to get in front of. After all, you can’t deposit “friends” at the bank.

So make sure you are focusing on getting the right message out to the right people in your market.

You want to target RECENT proven buyers, not freebie seekers.

Coming next week: A complete blueprint to $100K in 12 months.

Might slip in a real short Q’n’A tomorrow as well,

Craig Ballantyne

“Consistently and constantly force yourself to focus on the ‘critical few’ proactive activities that produce exponential results. Don’t get caught up in the minutia.”
Maverick Business Rule #8, Yanik Silver

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