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GOLD! Lex DeVille's: Guru Cults Exposed: The Tactics "Experts" Use To Pull You In & Suck You Dry

Shuhari

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@SinisterLex Your content is really mind-boggling. What a difference to read the high-level concepts of Cialdini and co. and to then see them applied and deconstructed by a pro (without being the target), really impressive.
 

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MisterBHZ

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You can learn tons from these guys. I go through their funnels & webinars just to see how they sell shit.

They obviously work because I've been seeing many of these guys for awhile now.

They start by targeting you with a video ad.

Then they send you to a landing page with another video on it...maybe some pics too (super powerful combination).

After you register, they send you to a thank you page with another video on it.

Then you're in the webinar which is another F*cking video...but much longer.

With all these touch points with videos & pics, it gets you to start liking them & trusting them because its feel like you know them.

They give you free tips & tricks (reciprocity)
They hit you with limited time offers (scarcity)
They get you committed with your email (consistency)
They have all kinds of testimonials (social proof)
They are rich & you ain't (authority)

Now you have been influenced & are more likely to buy their shit.

Tai Lopez said in order to build an 8 figure business, you need a funnel that's convincing enough to convert cold traffic.

And to do this, you need longer content.

Alex Becker said that businesses cap their incomes because they can only convert warm traffic & to break past that you have to be able to convert customers that DGAF.

That's what these guys excel at.

I've been working on my new landing page adding some of these strategies.

I can't wait to test this shit out.
 
Last edited:

NuclearPuma

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Powerful insights.

I've been through the webinar funnel and also a 3 day seminar my Mom brought me to when I was 18. I had to stop her from falling for the con. It's truely mass hypnosis.

The guru business model is based on deception at one point or another. But the question is, do the ends justify the means? IE yes my course will teach them how to make money but I have to lie and say they can what they love when really they can't, they have to become a con and use behavioral compliance triggers.

Tony Robbins for example, he coaches the top. Call him tier 0. Each tier may target the tier below them.

Tier 2 targets tier 3... do they actually offer them value?
Tier 1 who targets tier 2?
And then Robbins who targets tier 1 along with all of the tiers. Do the tier 1 folks actually get value or Robbins is just so likable and persuasive he has them all conned, even the other commen (or they know he is a con and want to learn from the best I.e. No shame)?

Robbins whole theme is "I believe in you." and he makes people FEEL good and maybe in some cases causes them to believe in themselves. What price
do you put on that? But do they really believe in themselves or is it that he builds their belief in Tony Robbins? He believes in me (so by reciprocity I believe in him). Robbins has them all convinced he is helpful, that they can do more with him than they can do on their own. It may be true for some but not others.

A big theme I see in all of these is that they push "mentors". I do believe mentors are great but I think the gurus push it only to position themself or their product as the solution to the problem statement "I need a mentor."

In essence, the gurus create the problem from thin air. Any problem can be solved with "because you don't have a mentor."

Lazy? Get a mentor
Don't have a Network? Get a mentor
Sucky ads? Get a mentor
Product sucks? A mentor will show you the ropes.
Your garden isn't growing? You need a gardening mentor.


Frustrated: But how do I get a mentor?

Guru: I can be your mentor. Join my class. Come to my retreat. (None of this is for me, it's all for you)!



Have you read science based books on behavioral science, persuasion, habits, behavior change, cognitive behavioral therapy, advertising and marketing? I have read over a dozen, and what I learned scared me. Why? You realize you are constantly being manipulated. I began to question what actions came from me, internally, and what was from environmental conditioning.

I even considered compiling all of the themes into a book of my own with a focus on protecting yourself from it all and making sure your actions are internal.

The sales tunnels and the behavioral compliance tactics are powerful. Like said earlier, they amount to mind control. It's like hypnosis. And a certain percentage of the population will ALWAYS comply and if the person pulling the strings knows your buttons then watch out because you may not be immune either.

It's unethical because the targets don't have a choice. Is the guru just giving a percentage of the market what they are searching for? Arguably, yes.
However, those desiring the gurus offer never had a choice. They were born with the desire and comdintioned from birth by our societal norms to achieve it. So the guru uses persuasion techniques to build the illusion (or the delusion) that the guru can deliver it. What the guru offers is always priceless to the target. A true pro, a top con, could find a buyer at almost any price point.

It's scary because you realize you too can be controlled and not even know it. No one is immune. These things are programmed into us at a deep subconscious level.

The key for the guru is to offer something that aligns with the targets worldview. You could sell info products to a nuns and priests so long as you convince them they can do more good with it (like grow a ministry).

like another poster said, it's like watching your children die. Look at pyramid and networking marketing or Scientology. It's tragic and saddens me. The participants are corraled into a psychological prison.

Like cattle trying to escape the herd dog they think they are moving themselves to free pasture but in the end they find themselves in the pen. The people are imprisoned but have an illusion of freedom. They believe they are making these decisions but really a "guru" is pulling the strings and herding them along.

And I wonder have some of the gurus taken their own koolaid? Do they believe they are actually enlightening people? Either they have no shame and are evil or they drank their own koolaid.

I think much of it does relate to the power of the mind and beliefs.

They are effective because their messages are filled with many truths but their goal is to sell you, not enlighten you.

The masters of persuasion and compliance can offer value but also be destructive.

Much is philosophical. Jim Rohn said only do things at the service of others, and as long you are self serving you are likely to fail. Sounds like MJ.

I think many of the gurus offer valuable insights in their books (which unfortunately are becoming popular as a step in the sales funnel). Then they put on the mind control seminars and start their cult and cross ethical boundaries turning people into slaves.

Because "find your own way." Doesn't sell.
 
Last edited:
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Lex DeVille

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yes you are right

so this is a good introduction for my next post:



let's talk about you the reader, whoever you are


because according to that guy ,


View attachment 19044


what you are saying right now is this:

" i don't care about you GMSI7D, son of a b****, hit the road,

i only care about me, me , me , my problems, my wants , my life

will you understand that i want to be rich, free, whatever !! ? "





we call this human nature and this is the core of the battle for everybody

for YOU and for manipulators





so let's point the light on YOU the reader

YOU are part of a show called society

View attachment 19045



YOU are studied in every way by the Masterminds, gurus, the NSA and so on


View attachment 19046



they know everything about YOU


View attachment 19050




they won't less YOU win unless YOU become aware of the situation

View attachment 19047




they use YOU as energy for their goals



View attachment 19048




YOUR job is to master YOURSELF in this game so YOU keep YOUR energy for YOUR goals



View attachment 19049



YOU will escape the manipulators by knowing why YOU are on earth


YOU are on earth for human evolution, YOUR evolution

YOU are not on earth for YOUR basic animal desires ( sex, food, cars etc,)

YOU are on earth for mastery in this game whether you like it or not

so BE an avatar of human intelligence

leave alone YOUR emotional brain for a second and consider YOUR superior power as a human being

don't YOU want power in life ?






.
Tbh I just want you to make your own thread. Stop cluttering mine. Until then, I'm reblocking you because your half-psychotic, ego fulfilling posts are a complete waste of time and add too little value to read.
 

Andy Black

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@GMSI7D

I’ve deleted your last five posts. Feel free to create your own thread and post to that.

May I suggest you keep an eye on engagement. Do you get likes? Do you get comments? Do people say you helped them?

A line I like by Derek Sivers is “If it isn’t a hit, switch.” If you’re not getting positive feedback from the marketplace, then keep changing it up till you do.

HTH
 

Everyman

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Hey SinisterLex

You really put a lot of effort and value here.

Your approach and tactics remind me of a book I read several months ago. It's called "How To Steal - A Thief's Handbook".

So the author basically wrote that he was doing a lecture on different aspects of conducting a business, focusing on e.g. contract law, bad debt law, insolvency etc... After a couple of hours everyone was exhausted. He switched the approach to 'how thieves, scams and dishonest people' use law to do wrong and never get caught. The people immediately started listening, taking notes, had hundreds of questions (after a really long day)...

This approach is much more practical and interesting because you are showing a lot of real-life examples. Don't take it the wrong way. I just think that the approach that any public school represent is counter-productive because we are immediately put off by 'Why am I learning this?', 'What do I need it for?'. Even here on the forum there is a lot of advice that comes from practitioners but isn't supported by real-life examples...

One of the best threads on the forum. It's clearly visible by the number of pages it has already got in a short time....

Thanks Lex


After several rounds of back and forth negotiations, I attempted an old school tactic. Told her if she wasn't on board with paying me a commission then she didn't see my value and she could keep her money. I'd walk...

She didn't budge, and I refunded $6,000 to prove I was serious, thinking she'd be f*cked without a good copywriter putting out the amount of content I was.

Unfortunately, that didn't go according to plan.

She blocked me, and removed me from her circles, but by then it was too late. I'd seen enough, grown a large enough network, and worked with enough coaches and gurus to always get work with others (although I do think I'm blacklisted in some circles who know her).
This is really interesting. It probably was unpleasant, but worked out for the best in the longer term.

Why do you think she did that?
 

Andy Black

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You can learn tons from these guys. I go through their funnels & webinars just to see how they sell sh*t.

They obviously work because I've been seeing many of these guys for awhile now.

They start by targeting you with a video ad.

Then they send you to a landing page with another video on it...maybe some pics too (super powerful combination).

After you register, they send you to a thank you page with another video on it.

Then you're in the webinar which is another f*cking video...but much longer.

With all these touch points with videos & pics, it gets you to start liking them & trusting them because its feel like you know them.

They give you free tips & tricks (reciprocity)
They hit you with limited time offers (scarcity)
They get you committed with your email (consistency)
They have all kinds of testimonials (social proof)
They are rich & you ain't (authority)

Now you have been influenced & are more likely to buy their sh*t.

Tai Lopez said in order to build an 8 figure business, you need a funnel that's convincing enough to convert cold traffic.

And to do this, you need longer content.

Alex Becker said that businesses cap their incomes because they can only convert warm traffic & to break past that you have to be able to convert customers that DGAF.

That's what these guys excel at.

I've been working on my new landing page adding some of these strategies.

I can't wait to test this sh*t out.
I agree about it being important to be able to sell to cold “traffic”. (I have a pet hate about the traffic word btw, hence the quotes.)

I think it’s important to start with warm visitors first. If you can’t sell to people who already know, like and trust you then you’ve no hope of selling to people who don’t know you.

I’ve sold my course to TFLF members. Can I consistently sell it outside the forum though?

(The trick is to get them to know, like and trust you enough before making each sale.)
 
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Lex DeVille

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Hey SinisterLex

You really put a lot of effort and value here.

Your approach and tactics remind me of a book I read several months ago. It's called "How To Steal - A Thief's Handbook".

So the author basically wrote that he was doing a lecture on different aspects of conducting a business, focusing on e.g. contract law, bad debt law, insolvency etc... After a couple of hours everyone was exhausted. He switched the approach to 'how thieves, scams and dishonest people' use law to do wrong and never get caught. The people immediately started listening, taking notes, had hundreds of questions (after a really long day)...

This approach is much more practical and interesting because you are showing a lot of real-life examples. Don't take it the wrong way. I just think that the approach that any public school represent is counter-productive because we are immediately put off by 'Why am I learning this?', 'What do I need it for?'. Even here on the forum there is a lot of advice that comes from practitioners but isn't supported by real-life examples...

One of the best threads on the forum. It's clearly visible by the number of pages it has already got in a short time....

Thanks Lex




This is really interesting. It probably was unpleasant, but worked out for the best in the longer term.

Why do you think she did that?
I'm on a road trip, but I'll follow up to recent questions when I'm back home later today.
 

NuclearPuma

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Who holds guru's accountable?

You were sold a dream. If you dont reach it can you return your dream for a refund?

The guru framework is to never be held accountable if their product doesn't work. It's almost lawsuit proof. The responsibility always gets put on the purchaser. The guru tells you his material works. His coaching works. It's not him, it's you. You need to change. You need to do more. You need to buy more.

Many gurus offer refunds but that is to overcome objections and build trust. But they can always say, oh those returns the user just wasn't ready. The user gets blamed. And oh yeah, it's just not for everyone.

Would a Coke, Pepsi, Tide, or Nike commercial ever say their product isn't for everyone?

For a televangelist it's also you, the user, that needs to change. You need to have more faith. Your faith isn't strong enough. You need to give a larger faith offering. For the online guru this is framed as you need to buy my next course.
 

Utopia

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@GMSI7D

I’ve deleted your last five posts. Feel free to create your own thread and post to that.

May I suggest you keep an eye on engagement. Do you get likes? Do you get comments? Do people say you helped them?

A line I like by Derek Sivers is “If it isn’t a hit, switch.” If you’re not getting positive feedback from the marketplace, then keep changing it up till you do.

HTH
This censorship is bull.

For the reasons you listed, that is even more trash. What is useful is often the things that go overlooked. We are not looking for likes, engagement or comments. This isn't social media and @GMSI7D is not trying to be a Kardashian.

What is most often engaged upon in society is usually the things with the least value. Your BS logic is unfounded for censoring this.

Granted, I will be the first to tell you @GMSI7D is miscalibrated in his communication. He is polarizing, punishing and turns people off to the ideas he has presented by the way he has communicated them. However, this doesn't mean that they are invalid or should be censored. If you see past his inability to communicate them effectively there is a lot of merit to them and it is directly related to this thread.

F you for trying to show us "the right way" or filtering out this information from us instead of letting us discern what is valuable and what isn't.

Hint: what most often isn't valued in society and provided by groupthink is often the most valuable. To hell with you value based on like engagement and likes talk. This is trash.

Tbh I just want you to make your own thread. Stop cluttering mine. Until then, I'm reblocking you because your half-psychotic, ego fulfilling posts are a complete waste of time and add too little value to read.
This isn't your thread it's the forums. Stop your ego and cascade to get more clients and be open to the discussion. You've contributed a tremendous amount here, but you want all the glory. Give @GMSI7D a break, he isn't as good of a communicator as you. It's not about you, it's about the forum.
 
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MJ DeMarco

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This censorship is bull.

For the reasons you listed, that is even more trash. What is useful is often the things that go overlooked. We are not looking for likes, engagement or comments. This isn't social media and @GMSI7D is not trying to be a Kardashian.

What is most often engaged upon in society is usually the things with the least value. Your BS logic is unfounded for censoring this.
I reviewed his posts and found them somewhat relevant so instead of deleting them I extracted them and created his own thread.

If the OP feels they are distracting and cluttering, he has the most authority in this issue.

However I agree that they shouldn't be censored.

Granted, I will be the first to tell you @GMSI7D is miscalibrated in his communication.
Perhaps as it is reasonable to assume English is his second language, something all of us must try to acknowledge.

This isn't your thread it's the forums.
True, but in some degree it is *his* thread so we try to respect the wishes of the OP.

I’ve deleted your last five posts. Feel free to create your own thread and post to that.
I created his own thread as I thought some of the graphics were quite interesting. Hopefully that keeps everyone happy.

Marketing and the Monkey Brain

Carry on.

END HIJACK.
 
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Lex DeVille

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Powerful insights.

I've been through the webinar funnel and also a 3 day seminar my Mom brought me to when I was 18. I had to stop her from falling for the con. It's truely mass hypnosis.

The guru business model is based on deception at one point or another. But the question is, do the ends justify the means? IE yes my course will teach them how to make money but I have to lie and say they can what they love when really they can't, they have to become a con and use behavioral compliance triggers.

Tony Robbins for example, he coaches the top. Call him tier 0. Each tier may target the tier below them.

Tier 2 targets tier 3... do they actually offer them value?
Tier 1 who targets tier 2?
And then Robbins who targets tier 1 along with all of the tiers. Do the tier 1 folks actually get value or Robbins is just so likable and persuasive he has them all conned, even the other commen (or they know he is a con and want to learn from the best I.e. No shame)?

Robbins whole theme is "I believe in you." and he makes people FEEL good and maybe in some cases causes them to believe in themselves. What price
do you put on that? But do they really believe in themselves or is it that he builds their belief in Tony Robbins? He believes in me (so by reciprocity I believe in him). Robbins has them all convinced he is helpful, that they can do more with him than they can do on their own. It may be true for some but not others.

A big theme I see in all of these is that they push "mentors". I do believe mentors are great but I think the gurus push it only to position themself or their product as the solution to the problem statement "I need a mentor."

In essence, the gurus create the problem from thin air. Any problem can be solved with "because you don't have a mentor."

Lazy? Get a mentor
Don't have a Network? Get a mentor
Sucky ads? Get a mentor
Product sucks? A mentor will show you the ropes.
Your garden isn't growing? You need a gardening mentor.


Frustrated: But how do I get a mentor?

Guru: I can be your mentor. Join my class. Come to my retreat. (None of this is for me, it's all for you)!



Have you read science based books on behavioral science, persuasion, habits, behavior change, cognitive behavioral therapy, advertising and marketing? I have read over a dozen, and what I learned scared me. Why? You realize you are constantly being manipulated. I began to question what actions came from me, internally, and what was from environmental conditioning.

I even considered compiling all of the themes into a book of my own with a focus on protecting yourself from it all and making sure your actions are internal.

The sales tunnels and the behavioral compliance tactics are powerful. Like said earlier, they amount to mind control. It's like hypnosis. And a certain percentage of the population will ALWAYS comply and if the person pulling the strings knows your buttons then watch out because you may not be immune either.

It's unethical because the targets don't have a choice. Is the guru just giving a percentage of the market what they are searching for? Arguably, yes.
However, those desiring the gurus offer never had a choice. They were born with the desire and comdintioned from birth by our societal norms to achieve it. So the guru uses persuasion techniques to build the illusion (or the delusion) that the guru can deliver it. What the guru offers is always priceless to the target. A true pro, a top con, could find a buyer at almost any price point.

It's scary because you realize you too can be controlled and not even know it. No one is immune. These things are programmed into us at a deep subconscious level.

The key for the guru is to offer something that aligns with the targets worldview. You could sell info products to a nuns and priests so long as you convince them they can do more good with it (like grow a ministry).

like another poster said, it's like watching your children die. Look at pyramid and networking marketing or Scientology. It's tragic and saddens me. The participants are corraled into a psychological prison.

Like cattle trying to escape the herd dog they think they are moving themselves to free pasture but in the end they find themselves in the pen. The people are imprisoned but have an illusion of freedom. They believe they are making these decisions but really a "guru" is pulling the strings and herding them along.

And I wonder have some of the gurus taken their own koolaid? Do they believe they are actually enlightening people? Either they have no shame and are evil or they drank their own koolaid.

I think much of it does relate to the power of the mind and beliefs.

They are effective because their messages are filled with many truths but their goal is to sell you, not enlighten you.

The masters of persuasion and compliance can offer value but also be destructive.

Much is philosophical. Jim Rohn said only do things at the service of others, and as long you are self serving you are likely to fail. Sounds like MJ.

I think many of the gurus offer valuable insights in their books (which unfortunately are becoming popular as a step in the sales funnel). Then they put on the mind control seminars and start their cult and cross ethical boundaries turning people into slaves.

Because "find your own way." Doesn't sell.
Ethics aren't absolutes, so while gurus do tend to push the limit, one person's ethics are not every person's ethics. Even within the realm of general ethics, there are multiple types of ethics. Gurus fall back on legality. What is legal is what is ethical in the eyes of most gurus.

I agree with pretty much everything you said. Especially the part where you question your own actions. Did I crave hot coffee this morning or did I see a Starbucks sign, translate the symbol into meaning, and suddenly crave the warm brown and orange tones of their store, the friendly barista smiles, and the taste of their Pike Place medium roast coffee?

Did I need coffee? Probably not. Did I believe I needed coffee? -- As if the world would end without it!

Cialdini's Influence book was written to give people a way to defend against some of the most common influence and persuasion methods being used against them. I think he mentioned it wasn't people looking for defense, but marketers who gave him their cash. Surprise surprise.

Gurus can be "good" or "evil" depending on how they play the game. I'd classify an MLM recruiter under "evil" category, while others who focus more on delivering a high quality product after purchase in the "good" category.

I'd classify Tony Robbins a "good" guru based on the products I've bought from him in the past. He sells sales training, but mostly he sells mindset and motivation. There's a price tag on it, but he's super well known, and he targets entrepreneurs and sales professionals (people who are capable of finding ways to pay).

Although I've bought his books, I was never moved to buy a course or mentoring from him. Don't remember it being offered in his books, but it might be in his newer stuff.
 
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Lex DeVille

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Hey SinisterLex

You really put a lot of effort and value here.

Your approach and tactics remind me of a book I read several months ago. It's called "How To Steal - A Thief's Handbook".

So the author basically wrote that he was doing a lecture on different aspects of conducting a business, focusing on e.g. contract law, bad debt law, insolvency etc... After a couple of hours everyone was exhausted. He switched the approach to 'how thieves, scams and dishonest people' use law to do wrong and never get caught. The people immediately started listening, taking notes, had hundreds of questions (after a really long day)...

This approach is much more practical and interesting because you are showing a lot of real-life examples. Don't take it the wrong way. I just think that the approach that any public school represent is counter-productive because we are immediately put off by 'Why am I learning this?', 'What do I need it for?'. Even here on the forum there is a lot of advice that comes from practitioners but isn't supported by real-life examples...

One of the best threads on the forum. It's clearly visible by the number of pages it has already got in a short time....

Thanks Lex




This is really interesting. It probably was unpleasant, but worked out for the best in the longer term.

Why do you think she did that?
The author's example from your post is a good example of the power of reframing and storytelling. A simple reframe shifted the audience's interest entirely. They went from boring lecture, to exciting secret insider knowledge. We can get boring lectures anytime anywhere. But insider knowledge is scarce, and telling stories about it can carry reader interest.

As far as why the coach did what she did, only she will ever know.
 
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Lex DeVille

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Who holds guru's accountable?

You were sold a dream. If you dont reach it can you return your dream for a refund?

The guru framework is to never be held accountable if their product doesn't work. It's almost lawsuit proof. The responsibility always gets put on the purchaser. The guru tells you his material works. His coaching works. It's not him, it's you. You need to change. You need to do more. You need to buy more.

Many gurus offer refunds but that is to overcome objections and build trust. But they can always say, oh those returns the user just wasn't ready. The user gets blamed. And oh yeah, it's just not for everyone.

Would a Coke, Pepsi, Tide, or Nike commercial ever say their product isn't for everyone?

For a televangelist it's also you, the user, that needs to change. You need to have more faith. Your faith isn't strong enough. You need to give a larger faith offering. For the online guru this is framed as you need to buy my next course.
The legal system mostly is responsible for holding gurus and others accountable. But it's not against the law to make vague statements regarding products. It's against the law to outright lie about products (at least here in the U.S.) which is why companies make vague statements. This is part of marketing.

Beyond the legal system, it IS the customer's responsibility to do their due diligence. If a guru claims you will "get results" -- one way or another, you will. Ultimately you have to be the one to decide if a product is worth trading your cash for or not. So not being held accountable is the framework of virtually all businesses, not just gurus.

This is one reason I don't pay for mentors, and only pay for courses when they offer a specific outcome I need. For instance, when I wanted to be trained in NLP, I researched programs, talked to instructors, and finally bought an NLP practitioner training program. How I use NLP is my business, but the course provided the specific info I needed while making vague statements about results I might get based on how NLP can be used.

On the flip side of the coin...

Students not following through is a huge problem. Gurus can't do much if anything about it. In my programs I've had some students who didn't bother doing any of the work or showing up for calls. Didn't ask questions. Didn't follow instructions. I can't force them to put in effort if they don't want to.

Many gurus I've worked with did try to solve this problem up front by filtering people as much as possible. Whenever possible, good mentors and coaches try to work with people who are already in motion and can afford the product they're considering. It's not always clear though.

That said, some coaches I've worked with had no problem pressuring people on calls into pulling cash out of their a$$, even when they had to do it via high-interest loans.
 

MisterBHZ

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You were sold a dream. If you dont reach it can you return your dream for a refund?
You can pretty much get your money back with these courses.

There's another corporation that will sell you a dream but offer 0% refund....whether you succeed or not.

If you take out a loan with the corporation, the debt stays with you until paid off...or until death.

It's called college.
 

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I'm not familiar with Darren Hardy, but he has the look of a Tier 2 Guru. Some things I notice at a quick glance:

• His programs look like they cover abstract concepts (things that can't really be measured)
• A lot of testimonials that don't mention SPECIFIC results (the training had a big impact on my life is incredibly vague)
• He's probably a good speaker and strong communicator and is good with storytelling
• Looks like he has good funnels in place that are pretty well fleshed out
• Targets a variety of industries which is a bit of a red flag for me

Based on all of this, I wouldn't buy from him. Others might find value in his NLP-based motivational speeches, but I wonder how much they take away at the end of the day.

(Note: this is kind of what Tony Robbins does also. I don't usually buy from him, but I'm not just starting out. I have some of his books, but not his training. The amount of value I might get from Tony would probably be different from what a brand new entrepreneur would get.)
Thanks alot, I gave you ALL MY REPs !
 

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How Facebook Helps Shady Advertisers Pollute the Internethttps://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-03-27/ad-scammers-need-suckers-and-facebook-helps-find-them

Very relevant article (shocking for me to say, coming from bloomberg) around all the guru activity and affiliate scams going on in facebook.. facebooks algorithm is so powerful it “finds the morons” for them


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I must be the moron because these ads are all over my Facebook stuff. I read them for entertainment and I might compile a list of them over the next month just out of interest.
 
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Lex DeVille

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Please watch this until the song ends, then we'll talk.


I asked you to watch first because I want you to really notice how this makes you feel. Maybe you're a stone cold douche who feels nothing. I'd wager most who see this find themselves with "something in my eye."

It takes seconds.

You feel it before the end of the first sentence of the song. Your cheeks tense. An icy chill washes down your back. Your arm hair raises. Goosebumps cover your body. Feels like cold water pumped into your veins.

You don't know this guy or his brother, but somehow...you're connected. You feel his emotions, his sorrow. His heartache is yours, and you feel it deep inside your bones.

What the hell is going on? Why are your fists clasped in front of your mouth? Why are there little pools in the corners of your eyes? None of this is an accident.

It's all by design.

The story is tragic. How it's used is borderline unethical. Television networks know people spend their days at work, droning out, feeling nothing. So when they come home and watch something that makes them feel, suddenly they're connected. They're tuned in. They tasted the high that is emotion, and they want more. So we see more and more reality shows exploiting stories of tragedy and darkness.

But this is about guru tactics...

So today I wanted to point out how in less than 5 seconds you were likely brought to the brink of tears. A direct demonstration of how easy it can be to manipulate emotions by applying simple psychological triggers and techniques. The very same techniques gurus use every day to bypass your defenses.

PRE-SUASION
How did the first 5 seconds of the song move you? They didn't. You were already in motion before you reached the song. A pre-suasion trigger was applied first. As soon as you heard the words "for my brother, who passed away when I was only young." Your mind was primed for a tear jerker story. Without taking a deep dive into neuroscience, just know that a whole bunch of psychological shit was happening in your head after that point.

TRANCE INDUCTION
All attention is focused on the singer. Nothing else but the man and his guitar. As we discussed previously, focused attention is the only requirement of trance induction. Upon entering a trance state, the mind becomes open and vulnerable. The first strum of his guitar sets the tone and we already have the context of the story that's to come. The first strum is a lot like Pavlov's bell.

FIRST PERSON JOURNEY
"I would do anything" -- puts you directly behind the eyes of the artist. You're in his shoes and because you're already in a trance, you can imagine where these 4 words lead next. You anticipate they're not leading to a happy place. The word "anything" adds weight to the gravity of the situation. This is a serious matter fueled by authentic emotion.

AGE REGRESSION
"to be two years old again" -- You've been placed in his shoes. You see through his eyes. Now he takes you inside your imagination. This is a form of hypnosis. Not intentional on the part of the artist (I suspect). Suddenly you're not sitting on your couch eating Doritos. You're a two year old boy thinking about your brother who you haven't lost yet, but soon will. Note how you can likely visualize this, though the memories do not belong to you.

HYPNOTIC LANGUAGE PATTERNS & NLP TIMELINING
"Imagine what we could've done." -- The word "imagine" is a trance deepener. The line uses vague language to begin a new story in the future. So now you've bounced from present, to past, to a future in a timeline that doesn't belong to you. You're in someone else's head, experiencing their thoughts, memories and emotions as though they were your own.

These are the same therapeutic techniques which are intended to help people overcome phobias and other problems in their lives. They're also the same techniques cult leaders and gurus use to grab your attention, give you the feels, play with your mind and ultimately, attempt to control your actions.

ALL THE OTHER TACTICS AND TECHNIQUES
At this point the song moves from vague to specific language, creating a clear picture of the artist's story in your mind. He describes specific details, and applies sensory language such as the words "squeezing my hand" which you can almost feel... By now you're hooked. In fact, you're more than hooked. It's like clutching a truck's tailgate as it speeds down the highway. You're barely holding on, and you're just along for the ride.

We don't need to go any deeper into the song. We could talk about the camera play, and video editing that draws your attention to the judge's thoughts and feelings. But there's no need. Just beware that your emotions, and even your physical bodily functions can be manipulated in a matter of seconds (especially in a controlled setting).

Gurus know this. They count on it. They do not sell logic. They sell feelings, and then they help you justify your purchase with reasoning (often flawed).

Pay attention when someone tells you to imagine something. Not to what they're saying, but to what they're doing with their words.

• "Imagine" is a trance induction and trance deepener
• Talking about the past might be small talk or might be age regression
• Talking about the future might be head canon or might be future pacing or timelining
• Vague language might indicate a big picture thinker, or a hypnosis practitioner
• Specific language might indicate a detail-focused thinker, or they might be taking you for a ride.
 

p0stscript

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After that I've come to the conclusion that maybe I am a stone cold douche who feels nothing.

As soon as you heard the words "for my brother, who passed away when I was only young."
Unfortunately when I heard this I thought "not again!" and I realise how sad it is that through constant use of sob stories on these type of programs and adverts I'm becoming desensitized, and that concerns me now.
I hope my heart hasn't become so hardened that I won't find myself with "something in my eye" in the future.
 
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Lex DeVille

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After that I've come to the conclusion that maybe I am a stone cold douche who feels nothing.



Unfortunately when I heard this I thought "not again!" and I realise how sad it is that through constant use of sob stories on this type of programs and adverts I'm becoming desensitized, and that concerns me now.
I hope my heart hasn't become so hardened that I won't find myself with "something in my eye" in the future.
They've become so common on AGT and The Voice that I almost can't stand to watch. I really appreciate the artists and their raw performances, and I like to know their stories. But the way television tries to exploit it really grosses me out. It's super frustrating.
 

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Brad S

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Please watch this until the song ends, then we'll talk.


I asked you to watch first because I want you to really notice how this makes you feel. Maybe you're a stone cold douche who feels nothing. I'd wager most who see this find themselves with "something in my eye."

It takes seconds.

You feel it before the end of the first sentence of the song. Your cheeks tense. An icy chill washes down your back. Your arm hair raises. Goosebumps cover your body. Feels like cold water pumped into your veins.

You don't know this guy or his brother, but somehow...you're connected. You feel his emotions, his sorrow. His heartache is yours, and you feel it deep inside your bones.

What the hell is going on? Why are your fists clasped in front of your mouth? Why are there little pools in the corners of your eyes? None of this is an accident.

It's all by design.

The story is tragic. How it's used is borderline unethical. Television networks know people spend their days at work, droning out, feeling nothing. So when they come home and watch something that makes them feel, suddenly they're connected. They're tuned in. They tasted the high that is emotion, and they want more. So we see more and more reality shows exploiting stories of tragedy and darkness.

But this is about guru tactics...

So today I wanted to point out how in less than 5 seconds you were likely brought to the brink of tears. A direct demonstration of how easy it can be to manipulate emotions by applying simple psychological triggers and techniques. The very same techniques gurus use every day to bypass your defenses.

PRE-SUASION
How did the first 5 seconds of the song move you? They didn't. You were already in motion before you reached the song. A pre-suasion trigger was applied first. As soon as you heard the words "for my brother, who passed away when I was only young." Your mind was primed for a tear jerker story. Without taking a deep dive into neuroscience, just know that a whole bunch of psychological sh*t was happening in your head after that point.

TRANCE INDUCTION
All attention is focused on the singer. Nothing else but the man and his guitar. As we discussed previously, focused attention is the only requirement of trance induction. Upon entering a trance state, the mind becomes open and vulnerable. The first strum of his guitar sets the tone and we already have the context of the story that's to come. The first strum is a lot like Pavlov's bell.

FIRST PERSON JOURNEY
"I would do anything" -- puts you directly behind the eyes of the artist. You're in his shoes and because you're already in a trance, you can imagine where these 4 words lead next. You anticipate they're not leading to a happy place. The word "anything" adds weight to the gravity of the situation. This is a serious matter fueled by authentic emotion.

AGE REGRESSION
"to be two years old again" -- You've been placed in his shoes. You see through his eyes. Now he takes you inside your imagination. This is a form of hypnosis. Not intentional on the part of the artist (I suspect). Suddenly you're not sitting on your couch eating Doritos. You're a two year old boy thinking about your brother who you haven't lost yet, but soon will. Note how you can likely visualize this, though the memories do not belong to you.

HYPNOTIC LANGUAGE PATTERNS & NLP TIMELINING
"Imagine what we could've done." -- The word "imagine" is a trance deepener. The line uses vague language to begin a new story in the future. So now you've bounced from present, to past, to a future in a timeline that doesn't belong to you. You're in someone else's head, experiencing their thoughts, memories and emotions as though they were your own.

These are the same therapeutic techniques which are intended to help people overcome phobias and other problems in their lives. They're also the same techniques cult leaders and gurus use to grab your attention, give you the feels, play with your mind and ultimately, attempt to control your actions.

ALL THE OTHER TACTICS AND TECHNIQUES
At this point the song moves from vague to specific language, creating a clear picture of the artist's story in your mind. He describes specific details, and applies sensory language such as the words "squeezing my hand" which you can almost feel... By now you're hooked. In fact, you're more than hooked. It's like clutching a truck's tailgate as it speeds down the highway. You're barely holding on, and you're just along for the ride.

We don't need to go any deeper into the song. We could talk about the camera play, and video editing that draws your attention to the judge's thoughts and feelings. But there's no need. Just beware that your emotions, and even your physical bodily functions can be manipulated in a matter of seconds (especially in a controlled setting).

Gurus know this. They count on it. They do not sell logic. They sell feelings, and then they help you justify your purchase with reasoning (often flawed).

Pay attention when someone tells you to imagine something. Not to what they're saying, but to what they're doing with their words.

• "Imagine" is a trance induction and trance deepener
• Talking about the past might be small talk or might be age regression
• Talking about the future might be head canon or might be future pacing or timelining
• Vague language might indicate a big picture thinker, or a hypnosis practitioner
• Specific language might indicate a detail-focused thinker, or they might be taking you for a ride.
@SinisterLex

Do you have to believe in a product or service to sell it or do copywriting for it effectively?

Do you consider your mindset that of an actor or hitman where you're paid to do a job, not to evaluate it's rightness/wrongness or value?

Do you consider this statement TRUE:

"Your priority as a salesman or copywriter is persuasion not sincerity".


And does it change the situation at all
if someone offered to pay you to promote their product on your personal YouTube channel with a video of you talking vs. copy on someone else's product or service page?



Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
 

aspenriver

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The story is tragic. How it's used is borderline unethical. Television networks know people spend their days at work, droning out, feeling nothing. So when they come home and watch something that makes them feel, suddenly they're connected. They're tuned in. They tasted the high that is emotion, and they want more. So we see more and more reality shows exploiting stories of tragedy and darkness.
I see why you chose this example as it is a good way to demonstrate guru tactics.

I don't agree with your notion that this is borderline unethical especially given the context of a music show...

Isn't good music supposed to move you, connect with your emotions and make you feel like you are right there in that moment?

For me personally, watching videos like this gets me in touch with my emotions and makes me feel grounded (meaning that I want to connect with other people on a real level).

Sure, many shows will try to exploit stories of tragedy and darkness, but just like many musicians try to make great emotional music, they often fall flat.

That is not to say that emotion junkies won't gobble it up like hotcakes.
 
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Lex DeVille

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@SinisterLex

Do you have to believe in a product or service to sell it or do copywriting for it effectively?

Do you consider your mindset that of an actor or hitman where you're paid to do a job, not to evaluate it's rightness/wrongness or value?

Do you consider this statement TRUE:

"Your priority as a salesman or copywriter is persuasion not sincerity".


And does it change the situation at all
if someone offered to pay you to promote their product on your personal YouTube channel with a video of you talking vs. copy on someone else's product or service page?
Good questions.

There was a time when I only saw myself as a hitman. My old copy website was even based around the theme. I believe I can sell just about anything once I understand who we're selling to. But should I?

One thing I've learned over the years is not to work with clients with shit products or mindset. One usually indicates the other, and both lead to negative outcomes for me.

I vet clients up front (most of the time) for that reason. It doesn't matter how much money they have. Clients who suck can turn a good thing bad fast. Even if you triple their rates, some will still pay, and you'll still be miserable working with them. If I think the client doesn't fit my ideal client profile, I just don't work with them.

Once a client fits my profile and pays, then I switch into hitman mode, because that's the experience they want. They want to feel like a powerful business owner who just hired a hitman (who can afford a hitman). They want to hand over a dirty job to a professional. They want the job done right.

In hitman mode we have agreements, written and unspoken. As long as they play nice, I'm a nice person. If they turn into a raving lunatic, that's okay too. As a hitman I've already taken precautionary measures.

In hitman mode I'm meticulous with research. I stalk my target and find out everything I can about them. Where do they work and live? Where do they hang out? What do they talk about and how do they talk about it? Why do they talk about it? Who are these people and how do I move them to buy?

Actor mode is for writing.
I can't write copy as a hitman.

If a hitman walked into a hospital guns drawn, it would cause a stir. To reach his target (Dr. Smith in Cardiology) he becomes someone who can wander unnoticed. Maybe a doctor. Maybe a patient. The point is, the hitman can't be a stone faced killer popping rounds just because he sees the target down the hall.

New copywriters are baffled by this conundrum. They've read every copy book. They know all the weapons of direct response combat. But what are they to do when the situation calls for trust, comfort, and a relationship? As @The-J would say, people convert, not tactics. That requires different skill sets not learned in copy books.

As for my personal brand, it wouldn't be wise to promote products I don't believe in. Your personal audience won't be as forgiving if they can't trust you.
 
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Lex DeVille

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I see why you chose this example as it is a good way to demonstrate guru tactics.

I don't agree with your notion that this is borderline unethical especially given the context of a music show...

Isn't good music supposed to move you, connect with your emotions and make you feel like you are right there in that moment?

For me personally, watching videos like this gets me in touch with my emotions and makes me feel grounded (meaning that I want to connect with other people on a real level).

Sure, many shows will try to exploit stories of tragedy and darkness, but just like many musicians try to make great emotional music, they often fall flat.

That is not to say that emotion junkies won't gobble it up like hotcakes.
To clarify, I'm not saying the musician is borderline unethical. He's just a good example of how certain words and techniques can stir emotion. We even see the judges appear to be moved by his song. He was the first example I came across.

It's borderline unethical for reality television shows to exploit human tragedy to keep people consuming, just as it's borderline unethical to call an MLM a business, and a recruit a "CEO." It's the hidden intent that makes both borderline unethical -- which is open to interpretation -- which is why I didn't flat out call it unethical.

When ethics are at play, what's legal is okay. That's why it's good to be aware of what's going on.
 

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ApparentHorizon

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A guru doesn't always need a human face to sell the dream.

Sometimes they can just be a business that uses a bunch of "influencers" as their human face.

A well known short seller explains why Shopify will get sued by the FTC.

Short seller Andrew Left says he's found a 'business dirtier than Herbalife'

View: https://youtu.be/O8mNanfNNLw


Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
Problem is, these smart investor types greatly underestimate people's....ability to keep lying to themselves.

Just ask Bill Ackman after closing his $1B short on HLF at a loss.
 

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