My first post for this new blog site is going to take a very general look at the problem of fraudsters in the business opportunity marketplace.  As a “fraudbuster” (people like to glamorize my role – it has its moments but work is work!) I tend to come into contact with a lot of marketing material for a whole range of dubious get rich quick schemes.  However, when I describe one or two of them I think you will start to see that the whole subjecy is a very grey area.  What is fraud and what is sharp business practice is not always clear – and many of the get rich quick schemes could work if the person wanting to get rich was prepared to work hard, perhaps invest some money and realised that “quick” could mean within a year or two (not overnight).

Many scams that I investigate are set up and run by very clever and enterprising people.  The only difference between them and (hopefully) you or I is that they want it quickly and easily without the slog.  If you are not prepared to put in the effort do not expect the returns.

I will digress from schemes that people are selling to schemes that people set up to get rich at others’ expense.  The example I have in mind is called “support publishing” and I have investigated several of these.  I will post a more formal article on the problem in a later post.  Support publishers ring around small businesses using yellow pages or contacts from the local press.  They pretend to be “supporting” charitable organsisations or good causes such as the police or fire brigade.  They offer you an advertisement in a booklet they are preparing on say “road safety for children” to be distributed widely around alll schools in your area.  You would feel mean if you did not take out an ad showing your support – anything from £100 to £1000 a time!  200 advertisements in a regional booklet, 50 regions – do the maths!

And the number of second rate booklets published (if at all) will be one for each advertser and maybe one or two to a school here and there.  Money for old rope and a waste of your advertising budget.  You will get no business from it and will have the satisfaction that you have funded the publishers’ lavish lifestyle.

So I hope to cover these scams as well as the money making ideas – as they are essentially get rich quick schemes that the police will chase you for if you start one!

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