In the past few months, there’ been a real blow up over “scammy” Facebook game techniques from companies like Zynga. There was also a very honest run-down of scam related revenue techniques by Dennis Yu, who I had the chance to meet and work with very briefly at the first Startup Weekend.
Essentially, the idea is to gain revenues by any means necessary. And we’re not talking about a small amount of revenue either. Zynga, the maker of Farmville (which I’ve never played by the way), makes about 1/3 of its estimated $250 million annual revenue stream through these scam-related offers. It has agreed to take all of those offers out of its games, which is a big commitment.
On the other hand, there are many opportunities for individuals to play in the game of making money by any means possible. If you’re on even a few mailing lists of online marketing “gurus”, you’ll get countless offers to buy over-priced how-to guides on the process. And the fact is, if you follow some of their formulas, you can indeed make some good money.
I’ve always been hesitant to do these get-rich quick schemes – most definitely to my own financial detriment. I started to question myself recently on exactly why it is I refuse to play these money-making games. The answer I’ve come up with is that I’m the type of entrepreneur that needs to make a difference in peoples’ lives with the companies I start.
Yes, I’d love to make buckets of money just like the next guy or gal. However, doing so in a way that does nothing to help the individuals buying from me, or doing so in a way that does not create something new and different – well, I’m just not motivated by that. I’m into the art of entrepreneurship for the art itself, you might say.
Now, honestly, I can’t say I see anything wrong with a lot of the gurus out there. A lot of them are really helping people to make more money and lead happier lives. And if you find yourself in the category of doing the art of entrepreneurship for the money, then please go for it by all means.
If you’re like me, though, do yourself a favor and unsubscribe from the gurus’ get-rich-quick scheme e-mail lists. You won’t find what you’re looking for there. In fact, it will probably make you feel worse. We sensitive types tend to take offense when we see others making those buckets of money while we, the starving artists continue to starve! –