No expertise. No money. What to do?

Some people just shouldn’t start an online business. They aren’t thinking about it correctly. Case in point, this is an email we recently got into the support desk…

And before I share this, realize that I don’t do so in any disparaging way. This is a representation of something we do see with some regularity. And I thought it would be something worthy of discussion.

“I have successfully found a problem to solve and a starving audience ready to get their problem solved. I would really love to get into the next step of the program! But I need up to next month to be able to raise $20. Would the program still be up then?
Another question I have is, I want to create a course or ebook to show how to practically make money online via dropshipping but I don’t know anything about dropshipping and I have never done it! I’m trying to research on materials to learn and start working because if I’m to create my own course or ebook, I have to show that i have done it and it works but there are too many materials out there and it’s difficult to choose from! Can you be of assistance please?”

OK, so let’s dissect this…

The first issue is that it was going to take a month for this person to get $20 together to buy what I can only assume is my Business Building Bootcamp course. And this brings up the issue of startup capital.

I’m not naive. And I fully understand that there are indeed people for whom $20 is a lot of money. I have absolutely no judgements about that. However, it doesn’t change the numbers. If one has a tough time affording $20, then it is going to be VERY, VERY difficult to make much of a dent in starting an online business.

Because, one does need startup capital. In fact, I wrote a whole blog post on the topic where I discuss how much I think you should plan on as a bare minimum – and where it should be spent. And I didn’t really even get into the topic of potentially using paid advertising in that post – which would require additional funds.

See, it isn’t that starting an online business is expensive. It just isn’t free. ALL businesses have startup costs. All of them. Online business is a pretty cheap one to start, but you’re going to need some financial breathing room to do what you need to do without freaking out about it. And surely, if one is in a position where it takes a month to put $20 together, the numbers just aren’t in your favor.

The second issue here is, of course, the fact that this person wants to create an online course about something he has literally no idea how to do. In fact, the problem is really two-fold:

– You can’t train people on something you have no idea what you’re talking about.
– You should never go into the “make money online” space if you’re a newbie like this. Because, it is one of the most competitive markets online and you’ll simply get slaughtered.

What I think this comes down to is that many people don’t seem to recognize the importance of REAL VALUE when it comes to a business. What is the VALUE that you bring to the world? How effectively are you solving their problems?

Instead of facing the tough dilemma that he has no value to offer in this space, he’s simply looking at it as a market and then going in there and “playing the part”. Trying to fake it until you make it. Trying to BE something without first DOing it or HAVING it. It is totally a violation of, well… natural law, really.

And so, this person is walking into a buzzsaw and didn’t know it. I set him straight in my email reply, since I don’t BS people.

I understand the dilemma, though. When one is in a tough financial spot but doesn’t feel they have any special knowledge to offer in the expert business, what does one do? It is not an enviable place to be.

But, I think this is one of those places where you cannot look at online business as some kind of panacea. It isn’t a magic pill. And usually, when I have people email us who are in a tough financial position and tell me they’re looking to start a blog and online business to fix their finances, I have to tell them something they don’t want to hear…

Go get a job.

Or, do something way more direct like provide a direct service in your local area.

On a temporary basis, forget about online business. Go solve the money problem to at least get your head above water in some other capacity, THEN circle back on online business. It won’t go anywhere.

This is because it is really tough to start an online business successfully if you are up against the wall financially. If anything else, that “must have it” mentality and stress that would be natural in that situation will make it tougher to succeed. It is much easier to run the experiments and tests needed to find your footing online when you don’t have your entire lifestyle riding on whether it works or not.

Anyway, just a reality check that I wanted to share that came to mind from an email we got. 🙂