Considerations before you spend money on information


Seeing as I’m on Twitter almost every day, and have a few of my own products to market, not to mention this site and the Afrikaans version which could always do with some extra readers, I thought it might be good to invest in a course on how to make money on Twitter. The hottest product on Gumroad is a guide called “The Art of Twitter”, available for $89.00 (or if you’re lucky and get it at a discount, $62.00). More than 5,000 copies of the guide have already been sold, so it’s certainly worth considering.

However, I hold back before I press the “Buy Now” button. Here are the reasons:

I have bought many information products. Almost always you are disappointed at the end. Why? Maybe the content is nothing but rehashed nonsense. In other cases, the information is decent enough, and you learn things you didn’t know. What’s the problem then? You complain that you hoped there would be “more information”.

What you really mean: You were hoping on the last page of the PDF would be an incantation that conjures up a fairy who will do all the work for you. Because this is the inevitable next step: Six months plus of mostly boring work before you see any results.

The other reason I’m holding on to my $89 (or $62) is because – so I reckon – you can get most of the content for free if you just search for it on Google (or Bing, Yahoo, Duckduckgo or Brave). Check out the table of contents: The basics of Twitter; Picking a niche; How to attract followers; Popular tips NOT to follow; Growth strategies; How to create tweets that get likes, retweets, and engagements; The easiest, fastest, and safest ways to make money with Twitter; How to avoid getting banned; How to build a strong network. Then there are the bonuses: How to create and monetize Twitter bots; Growing beyond Twitter (Reddit, Telegram, Instagram, Facebook); a free 3-month subscription to an automation tool; and an archive of 258 of the author’s best tweets. Besides the 3-month subscription (on your own you get seven days free anyway, and after that it’s $12.49 per month minimum), you can find similar information in sometimes long, detailed articles on the first page of Google’s search results – provided of course you use the right phrases and keywords. Similar research can also be done on YouTube, Pinterest, and of course on Twitter itself, where people regularly publish mini articles on the topic.

Wouldn’t it save time to just buy the product? I reckon: Not really. It doesn’t take long to search for information, and you can read five or six different articles instead of getting just one person’s view. And there’s always a possibility that one article will give you additional phrases with which you can search for more information.

Why, when you can get most of the information for free, do people still spend so much money on a set of PDFs?

The psychological factor. You feel if you spend more than a few dollars on something, you will surely jump in and make use of what you learn. Plus, an information product worth a quarter of the retail price will provide you with a plan you can start executing once you’ve read the last few pages (and, to your dismay, seen there’s no incantation for a fairy who’s going to do all the work).

So, what should you do if you want to continue your attempt to make money from Twitter?

Ask yourself when you want to start, because what you’re looking at is a new part-time job. Want to get started right away? Tomorrow morning? Next Monday?

Then you need a plan, preferably in steps: Who is your target market? What topic are you going to focus on? What will you include in your Twitter profile? What type of content will you post? How often will you be posting content? A list of big names in your chosen niche that you should follow, and whose content you should respond to. And so on.

Then, time to do some research.

If you don’t mess up too much, you might be able to buy yourself a new lawn chair in a few months with your accumulated Twitter dollars – or, who knows, perhaps a new car.