I can still hear the four words that were dripping with arrogance.
I had a dream in 2009. I wanted my virtual interior design business to be a success and I needed to learn online marketing strategies. A guru in the "industry" told me: "good luck with that".
Back then, virtual interior design wasn't ever going to be a thing in the eyes of these design industry psychics. Better yet, the only way to attract clients was to go to networking events.
For me, I had a baby at home and the last thing I ever wanted to do was have to leave my kid with a babysitter. I was convinced that if it worked for other industries, it had to work for interior design.
This guru wasn't the only one shitting all over the eDesign idea and marketing online. There were shitloads of snooty-ass, old school bitches who thought it wouldn't work (and there still are lots of them still around spouting the same opinions while their business die a slow death).
So to now see some of these "gurus" turn around and say it's viable to do virtual design and marketing online is where it's at - well it makes me want to vomit all over their glamour shots.
I know, while writing this post I'll be pegged as that bitch who should be supportive of everyone in the design industry. We should all get along like Rodney King said. We should be supportive of one another.
Fuck that shit.
Don't get fooled by them.
Listen, the point is that there's lots of these experts coming out of the woodwork to tell you how you'll be rolling around in your bed on a pile of hundred dollar bills if you join their community, hire them, take their course, go to their events and so on.
They'll tell you that they've got the "cutting edge" strategies. Then you look at their ghetto website and see how "cutting edge" they really are. Or you may see their "fancy pants" website they paid someone to create hoping to get you to hire them based on their glamourous virtual digs as an indicator of their success in helping you. Or you dig into their social media wasteland and see no interaction going on. Or the thing that grosses me out the most is the pimping of their BFFs who really have no value to add to your business. It's just affiliate marketing to them.
Before You Hire Someone, Check Them Out
It could look like roses and unicorns but smells like leprechaun farts when you get to work with them.
I can't tell you how many times I've heard about these "gurus" from clients. How upset they were to lose money, get virtually no personal help and feel taken advantage of.
I don't care if you hire me or not. My point is that be careful who you give your money to.
- Chat with them on the phone (or Skype). Ask them the real questions you need answers to.
- See what results they can help you get. Are they promising the same fluffy bullshit or actually strategies that will take work on your end. If they promise you that you'll make a fuckton of cash by just working with them, run. A good coach can't promise you tangible things like money or timelines because they are coaching you, not implementing it. You're in charge of your future and most coaching isn't a done-for-you solution.
- Talk with their past clients. Find out what their experience was like. Yes, their experience may not be like yours because like I said before, coaching success depends on the work you put into executing the strategies.
One last thing, one coach cannot help you achieve all of your goals. For instance, I'm not into helping you with contracts, contractors, working with trade resources, hiring staff, etc. It's not something that lights my soul on fire. My expertise is online marketing strategies for interior designers. I love strategizing about how to make money online with kickass marketing strategies. That's it.
If they tell you that they can help you with EVERYTHING, run like a mofo.
You know the saying: "Jack of All Trades, Master of None"? If they promise the world, they're full of shit.
Alycia Wicker is a business coach for creative entrepreneurs. Her clients land more of their own dream clients and make more cash, period. Celebrity gossip whore. Elvis-obsessed.