Freebee seekers taking liberties

14 replies
A bit of a rant really, because I've had another one this morning. Just wondered what other IM'ers experiences are of free offer seekers taking liberties with your time/good nature.

I have a site which puts authors in touch with publishers (although I'm not an agent). To build my list I offer the latest updates before I have time to put them online. I don't charge for this, and its quite popular. I have an ebook, which sells on site and I mention it in each newsletter, but I don't overly push it or treat opt-ins as cash cows.

The problem is, increasingly people contact me for advice etc. which I don't mind giving up to a point. But a couple of days ago an author asked my opinion regarding promoting a series of books she had written. I emailed back suggesting she built a site, created a buzz around the subject, and use it as a vehicle to sell her work. This morning I not only received her entire business plan for this project, requiring my opinion, but she also attached the website for me to review!

You'd be amazed how many people also email me thier entire novel asking for an opinion/review!

What are Warriors experiences of people taking liberties, and how do you manage them?
#freebee #libertie #liberties #seekers #taking
  • Profile picture of the author retsced
    If the person is on my list, I'll help them out in any way I can, but if they're taking liberties and have no respect for my time then I'll tell them straight up that I have my own business to run. I certainly wouldn't read a bloody novel for anyone. That would just be a dumb thing to do.
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    • Profile picture of the author StingGB
      I'm not alone then, and I'm not surprised. Perhaps I should look into partnering with one or two people (reviewers/editors). When someone pushes things I could at least earn an affiliate commission. Its amazes me what people think one is qualified to do once your name gets out there. I'm an author, not an editor. And anyone who looked at my post history here would know I'm certainly not qualified to offer advice about building websites!
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    • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
      Well, the lady is a go getter... what´s wrong with that?

      I have a small community and many who jump in automatically wants to be my new best friend, not because I am so great, but because of what I represent.

      In some cases, we do become really good friends. In some others, don´t. But I always try to solve their urgent problems, we build a huge set of information and there is always a place where I can send them to read or watch videos.

      What I would recommend you is to work over the inner conflict here. New writers do need someone to read their novels and give advice. They need someone to check their plans. There are only some hours in the day and you can´t do it all by yourself and make a living. So you have an interesting conundrum.

      How about creating the means for them to solve their problem? for example, create a peer pool where authors or readers are willing to be the first reader of novels (by category helps), and people can connect with each other to make it happen.

      You can do this open or closed, and choose the people among those who contact you who are trustworthy ("Ok, I read your novel, but you have to read the novel of another new writer" And to the next one, you say you don´t have time, but you can send it over to someone who is willing to read and give advice).

      And don´t forget to learn from them. What you are learning from the interaction with this lady can be a wonderful new book to offer to the community.

      Just my 0.02 cents...

      Sandra
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  • Profile picture of the author SurrealPSD
    Originally Posted by Chris Kent View Post

    muppets.
    idiots
    STFU.


    God help anyone on your list
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  • Profile picture of the author PerformanceMan
    I say help them. Don't spend all day on it but take a few minutes and make a genuine effort to help.
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    • Profile picture of the author StingGB
      Originally Posted by PerformanceMan View Post

      I say help them. Don't spend all day on it but take a few minutes and make a genuine effort to help.
      I do. I reply to everyone who contacts me, and offer my advice whenever I can. My rant was about those who seem to come back time after time, and really seem to assume you have little else to do but mentor them for free. The crux of my point is whenever I interact with people, particularly if its regarding something which may be beneficial to me, the fact that I am imposing on their time is always at the forefront of my mind. It just disappoints me a significant minority of visitors to my site don't think the same way.
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      • Profile picture of the author PerformanceMan
        Originally Posted by StingGB View Post

        I do. I reply to everyone who contacts me, and offer my advice where I can. My rant was about those who seem to come back time after time, and really seem to assume you have little else to do but mentor them for free.
        I know the type, no doubt. The trouble with people like this is there's no nice way to tell them that 'enough is enough.'

        Personally I've never understood their mindset, either. Steering them towards paying more money is the only way I've ever successfully got them to stop.

        After so many emails just be like: "I'm so busy right now that giving you a detailed analysis of your website would cost me money. Maybe you should join the Warrior Forum and PM a guy named Chris Kent. I heard he loves helping muppets."

        That should work.
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        • Profile picture of the author StingGB
          Originally Posted by PerformanceMan View Post

          Maybe you should join the Warrior Forum and PM a guy named Chris Kent. I heard he loves helping muppets."

          That should work.
          Yes, he commented earlier in this thread. He's perhaps a little too harsh to set upon the delicate sensibilities of budding authors!
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  • Profile picture of the author ActionToCash
    Just a thought - maybe you should start offering paid consulting as one of your services? Perhaps define as your freebie 1 free consultation, then just $XX per hour thereafter. Or offer a few free consultations if it makes you feel better before charging to give them a taste of your expertise?

    Just a thought - but if you have droves of people constantly seeking your counsel you must be fulfilling a void that needs filled. Not saying to rip anyone off, but there's no reason you shouldn't be compensated at some level for your expertise. There are tons of people on this forum that do it as a major income stream.

    Happy consulting!

    Randall
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  • Profile picture of the author WinstonTian
    It's strange, but I realize that the higher the price you go, the
    lesser this kind of problem seems to crop up.
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    Cheers,
    Winston
    The Beginner's Doctor

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  • Profile picture of the author rosetrees
    I would just write back, politely pointing out that you aren't an agent and therefore are not qualified to give your opinion.

    Clearly she trusts your advice and your site and newsletter are professional and useful.
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  • Profile picture of the author professorrosado
    Originally Posted by Chris Kent View Post

    I ignore such muppets. I get them all the time via PM here. People think that just because you have a few thousand posts you are suddenly their personal adviser???

    These idiots don't even get a response from me now.


    If you want to let her down lightly, tell her that you're very busy but for your standard fee of $100/hour you can help her. She'll soon STFU.
    I had one yesterday...but I flipped him and he became a customer of mine. I see it as free promotion and I practice selling. Any contact is a potential sale.
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    • Profile picture of the author RogueOne
      Time permitting, I would make an effort to be helpful and responsive to their needs.
      Taking a little time to help people has produced great rewards for me.

      In my life as a whole and not just in IM, it seems the more I give away, the more I get in return.

      People in general are loyal even if they don't realize it. They will remember the person that went over and above for them.

      That being said, you still have to set boundaries.

      I would take the opportunity they provide to earn some money. "I will be happy to read your book. The current rate for this type of work is $x, I will be happy to do it for 20% less then the going rate."

      Or something like that.
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  • Profile picture of the author jamesrich1
    Originally Posted by StingGB View Post


    What are Warriors experiences of people taking liberties, and how do you manage them?
    When people ask them for additional help refer them to a product that has a in depth solution. Off course make sure your affiliate link is inside that solution.
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