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GOLD! Are You Driving a Fastlane ... or Riding It?

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MJ DeMarco

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Take a moment and envision your dream car. Veyron? Lambo? Ferrari?

Now, I want you to imagine a hypothetical situation in which you were given the keys to your dream car to do anything you want, unencumbered for one full hour.

What would you do? Would you grab those keys and take it for a spin using every single minute of that hour? Or, would you plop your butt down in the passenger seat and ask someone else to drive? I can't imagine anyone forgoing the opportunity to drive their dream car and saying "Here, you take control, I'll sit in the passenger seat".

Unfortunately, this is how many of us approach business -- we are Passengers of a Fastlane -- and that limits our wealth potential and usually, makes someone else rich.

One core concept of a pure Fastlane Business Strategy is control. You need control over your business, your organization, your revenue model, and your operational choices.

Drivers of the Fastlane have such control -- passengers do not.

So are you DRIVING a Fastlane? Or are you a PASSENGER in it?
Passengers join MLM companies. Drivers create them.
Passengers buy FRANCHISES. Drivers sell them.
Passengers join AFFILIATE programs. Drivers offer them.
Now, I know this "passenger" description describes many of you. Don't get discouraged or defensive. Passengers of Fastlanes can make good money, sometimes, boatloads! However understand this: The driver retains control and makes the big money. The passengers make good money.

There is a difference between GOOD MONEY and BIG MONEY.

Good money is $20,000/mo.

Big money is $200,000/mo.

When I owned my company, I offered an affiliate program. My best affiliate consistently earned $30,000+/mo. Yes, he was making good money. He was the passenger. I was the driver. As a driver, I was making $200,000+/mo. Good money versus big money.

We all have heard of "AdSense" millionaires. These are affiliates and content marketers who earn GOOD money from promoting Google Adsense. Some content providers and bloggers are doing 6 figures monthly. While this can be argued to be BIG MONEY, Google (the Driver) is making the BIGGER money.

Now we get to the most dangerous reason of choosing to ride a Fastlane as a passenger versus a driver.

This week, I experienced the dangers and consequences of a Fastlane passenger strategy firsthand. Some of you might have noticed ... Here is the story:

A thread here at the forum was discussing the RichJerk program. This became a topic because Google Adsense was serving-up RichJerk ads on the forum's sidebar.

Anyhow, as the thread progressed, I made a joking post about Latrell Sprewell: I posted "Yo, click on some G-00-g-1e Ads cuz I have a family to feed!". For those who don't know Latrell, he was a former NBA Basketball player who declined a multi-million dollar basketball contact and claimed the offer was ludicrous because "he had a family to feed". Funny huh?

Not really.

The folks at Google, either through their spiders or manual review, looked at this joking post and claimed it violated their terms. They shut my ads down and in one swift stroke, destroyed my revenue stream.

The ad space was now serving up blanks and my daily revenue sank to $0.00.

Now imagine if this forum and the Google Adsense revenue was responsible for feeding my family. Imagine if I relied on it. Imagine if my mortgage, my car payment, my child's education relied on this income stream. Imagine if I was earning $15K/mo from these ads and in one big swoop, it was gone.

No control. No say. No power.

It took me 8 days to resolve the problem, but it exposed the dangers of riding a Fastlane as a passenger versus driving it.

For those 8 days, revenue was $0.00. Zero. Nada. Zilch.

I can't imagine running a company where another company has the power to instantaneously KILL your revenue stream. It is dangerous.

Yet, millions of people submit to this type of organizational control without pause. They sign franchise agreements giving control over crucial business decisions; marketing, ads, royalties. They join distributorships in which their compensation structure is control by others. Their product funnel is controlled by a centralized source.

Years ago, I was apart of an MLM. I had a friend making GOOD MONEY. Ultimately, the company changed its product line and comp structure. His GOOD MONEY stream disappeared and the asset he created (his downline and cash-flow stream) disappeared in a matter of months. He had no control, no say, and no power.

So when you embark on your journey to wealth, ask yourself, am I going to grab the keys to the Fastlane and drive it like there's no tomorrow? Or am I going to sit in the passenger seat and let someone else drive the vehicle ....

Drivers have all the fun and make the BIG money.


~ MJ
 

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TC2

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I totally agree with MJ. I have been the pessangers for years. I helped at least three start-up companies becoming multi-million dollars corporation world wide. So what?

I have never felt secured. I worked my a.. off to keep on top of the companies, but I was never able to reach the summit. I don't have control.

Personally, I am currently a driver. My challenge is to find the right car to drive. In stead of waiting for someone handing me the key of Lambo, I am building my own car from scratch.

MJ's montly income definitly motivates me! :)
 

yveskleinsky

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Remind me to buy you a drink this time at the next meetup!
 

HenkHolland

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Excellent point. BTW I'm glad you were able to resolve the issue.

It reminds me of the numerous cases of entrepreneurs who start a company based on a distributorship for somebody else's company. They don't have control.
Whenever I look at building a fastlane business (and create value in it) by selling a product, I want to make sure that my business owns the intellectual property rights of the product.

Speed++
 
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MJ DeMarco

MJ DeMarco

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NICK870123

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Great post, i was a (semi) passenger for a couple of months with the whole MLM business. This post puts everything into perspective. I want to be in the driving seat now. Sort out everything now, do a good plan and i will finally get there, no mater how long it takes, its gonna work out. I know it will!!!

Now time to find those keys to my Bugatti Veyron.

(Its only $1,500,000)
 

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TC2

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MJ:

I am curious. Since you sold your company, you must be either burning your saving account or having other passive income going on that will make you more than 200K/month.

My point is. You must have something that are currently making or potentially make you a huge money in order to sell your 200k/m business. I won't personally sell the company unless I have other plan to make more. So I assume that you have a bigger plan.

Will you share that with us? :)
 

Rawr

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Very good post! Can we add having a JOB to this as well - at any time, for a multitude of reasons, you can find yourself out of one.

MJ, this might have been addressed, but how do you feel about having multiple vehicles to hedge some individual risks? Is it worth it to stick to one thing mainly or for example: have a business /invest on the side/ play poker. (I guess not much time btw all those things + life though)
 
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MJ DeMarco

MJ DeMarco

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Very good post! Can we add having a JOB to this as well - at any time, for a multitude of reasons, you can find yourself out of one.

MJ, this might have been addressed, but how do you feel about having multiple vehicles to hedge some individual risks? Is it worth it to stick to one thing mainly or for example: have a business /invest on the side/ play poker. (I guess not much time btw all those things + life though)
I don't like diversification until after the Fastlane. I believe in focus. SteveO has a good thread about focus in the legendary section. Tiger Woods doesn't diversify. He made his fortune in GOLF. Golf allowed him the option to diversify into all types of things ... diversification didn't. If you examine all successful entrepreneurs, they focused on one thing and kicked a$$ at it. After they "made it", then they diversified because it gave them the freedom to do so.

How many times do you hear about entrepreneurs who slave months and years away to build a huge company, then sell it for gazillions ... then later post sale, awash in millions of cash, that same entrepreneur invests in 10 different companies. FOCUS then DIVERSIFY.

I can diversify because I focused on one thing. Focus allows for diversification.

I am curious. Since you sold your company, you must be either burning your saving account or having other passive income going on that will make you more than 200K/month.
I took a serious paycut, but my lifestyle did not change simply because my expenses always fall below my income, even post sale.

Terence, do a calculation for me: Determine the monthly income generated from $10,000,000 ... at 5%. Once you arrive at the calculation, let me know if you think that is a decent amount of monthly, "do nothing" passive income. I think you will be surprised.:smx1:
 

mtnman

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Terence, do a calculation for me: Determine the monthly income generated from $10,000,000 ... at 5%. Once you arrive at the calculation, let me know if you think that is a decent amount of monthly, "do nothing" passive income. I think you will be surprised.:smx1:
So what part of the fastlane ideology suggests going from "big money" to "good money"?
Work your a$$ off to take a pay cut? What kind of role model is that. Geesh!

I'm kidding, I'm kidding. lol (note to self - now would be a good time to apply jock with cup insert)
 
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MJ DeMarco

MJ DeMarco

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So what part of the fastlane ideology suggests going from "big money" to "good money"?
It's called the destination; the point of the Fastlane is to go somewhere fast. That somewhere is freedom from the rat race, or other's might call it, retirement.
 

mtnman

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It's called the destination; the point of the Fastlane is to go somewhere fast. That somewhere is freedom from the rat race, or other's might call it, retirement.
Understood Boss, just messing around.:tiphat:
 
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MJ DeMarco

MJ DeMarco

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Also, as mentioned in the other thread, this exercise can highlight potential "Get Rich Quick" scams.
 

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SaraK

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Yet another awesome post, thanks MJ!

I was thinking about this topic recently when someone asked me if I wanted to buy a Rich Dad franchise. I was like... Pay $35,000 to do something I am already doing only I lose all control to do things the way I want? I don't think so!
 

Banthaman

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Earth... yes that is specific
Just a thought, selling on ebay would be fine as long as thats not the main plan but quick revenue/cash to build your plan.

Great post MJ! a real thought provoker
 
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MJ DeMarco

MJ DeMarco

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I am assuming that selling items on ebay would be riding along?

Great post.
Yes ... Ebay is the driver, you are the passenger.

Just a thought, selling on ebay would be fine as long as thats not the main plan but quick revenue/cash to build your plan.

Great post MJ! a real thought provoker
Correct. There is nothing wrong with making extra income, even if it isn't "Fastlane" -- I just wouldn't have this as the main plan.
 

michaelscheuren

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would starting a website(s) selling products supplied by dropshippers be fastlane?? or would you consider that riding along because you are depending on the dropshipper/wholesaler?
 
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MJ DeMarco

MJ DeMarco

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would starting a website(s) selling products supplied by dropshippers be fastlane?? or would you consider that riding along because you are depending on the dropshipper/wholesaler?
In my opinion, no. The manufacturer of the product who is distributing to wholesalers/retails is the driver.

A simple way to determine the Fastlane of anything is to "follow the money" or the product to the top of the chain. Take it all the way to the top of the chain. The top typically represents the driver.

Of course there are exceptions which can be bypassed thru replication, duplication, and systems ... Walmart is a good example of this.
 

ryanpal

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mj, you mentioned you offered your own affiliate program. i wanted to keep this program inhouse instead of joining an affiliate network such as clickbank etc.

i've come across some interesting posts while searching for an affiliate open source solution. some of the forums suggested that it's better to go with a well known affiliate network so that you're taken serious.

if you don't mind sharing, what route did you take when offering your affiliate program?

thanks in advance.
 

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