Joint Venture or Monetization Scheme?

Today I was pondering something regarding the fitness industry and it inspired me to write this post.  As most of you know, the fitness industry is a multi-billion dollar industry.  There is alot of money to be made by someone with a large list of prospects.  A common teaching of internet gurus is to get involved with a joint venture (JV) to assist with building your list of prospects. 

I am active on Facebook and Twitter and enjoy interacting with people in both places.  From time to time I get joint venture offers on Facebook.  I’ve generally ignored them for a multitude of reasons.  For some reason this past week I decided to investiate one.  I believe what inspired me is the fact that this joint venture is aimed directly at fitness professionals. 

I filled out the form for this “free” joint venture opportunity and hit the submit button.  I was taken to a page that began to pitch me on buying into another part of the joint venture opportunity.  By spending $17 I would be guaranteed a place in the joint venture opportunity.  I would get special preference for placement on the joint venture page when the launch occurred.  I decided that I did not want to spend $17, so I clicked the “no thanks” button.  Amazingly, I was sent to an almost identical pitch page that told me that I could get the same thing for just $7. 

Think about what I just told you.  What would have happened if I had decided to pay the $17 right off the bat?  I would have paid $10 extra for something that I could have gotten for $7.  To me, that is a rip off, plain and simple.  I’m betting you wonder why I am bringing this topic up.  I bet you are not seeing the connection to the fitness industry in general.

Well, my friend, this is becoming more and more common in the fitness industry.  It is not just happening with joint venture opportunities.  Fitness gurus are offering their products at $89.95 and when you say you don’t want it (by either clicking on “no thanks” or by trying to navigate away from their site) they offer to sell you the program for $49.95.  That’s right, just for saying no you save $40.00.  This bothers me.

If you are really selling your product for $49.95 just do so right up front.  In fact, I think people should offer their product at a price they want and then allow the customer to add or subtract from the price if they feel the product is either worthy of more money or so bad that it should have cost less money.  This will force the gurus to make products that are effective and do what they claim they do.  It is a new form of a guarantee.

As the consumer, you can get this to happen.  If you try a product and don’t feel it lives up to the hype, return it for a full refund and then communicate to the author what you feel the program was really worth. Tell the author that you would have paid another amount had that offer been available.  If enough people were to do this it would soon become a method for paying on programs.  The authors would then work very hard on their product because they’d want to maximize their income.  Everyone would win.

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