Marketing Guru
November 25, 2005 3:04 PM   Subscribe

Any actual, personal experience with famous "Marketing genius", Jay Abraham? Or do you know somebody who actually used his consulting services?

I have a knock-out business concept and I need some help in designing a business plan for it. I’ve heard of Jay for many years, but always shied away from calling on him ($5K/hr – 2 hours minimum for the initial consultation! Can it really be worth it?) But I’m tempted to do it now. If you used him in the past, would you re-use him? Can you recommend somebody like him, maybe cheaper? (And yes, I want to get what I’m paying for)
posted by growabrain to Computers & Internet (7 answers total)
I'm confused. A business plan isn't something you'd typically have a marketing genius design; marketing is just one element of planning the whole business. My understanding is that the financial details of the plan are the important part, since the business plan is going to be used to help you build capital to get the business going.

Marketing will be important to the business once it's established, but my suspicion is that even if you don't feel comfortable doing your own campaigns that you'd be better off paying for results than celebrity -- especially someone familiar with your target market.

(And oh, god, that website, that WEBSITE. Physician, heal thyself!)
posted by mendel at 4:00 PM on November 25, 2005

When I visit his website, I get a feeling that I'm being fished. He seems to really want to help me make a million bucks. Because, you know, he tells me about how much money he has made and how much he knows and how much everyone values him. So I should feel good about him, and part with some significant cash so that he can help me, too. What a nice man!

Which makes me very suspicious of his motives, and causes me to turn away.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:09 PM on November 25, 2005

There is a picture of him smirking and pointing at the viewer. That says all I need to know.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 4:45 PM on November 25, 2005

Want cheaper? Go to your local University, where they have MBA students help you design a business plan for almost nothing - they're getting collegiate credit, you get aggressive grad students.

Then, please, send me the $9k that I saved you.

small business development centers
posted by filmgeek at 6:31 PM on November 25, 2005

I've been in sales and marketing management for a dozen years and am the director of sales and marketing in my current gig. Jay, if you can afford him, should be on your short list. Thing is, he's all marketing and sales strategy with a strong emphasis on direct marketing and you're looking for a business plan. Jay's core competency is moving the sales graph up.

You can pick up used Jay Abraham tapes and books from ebay... at least you could a few years ago, which was the last time I checked. I would recommend a hard bound book he put out years ago as a cheap way to get into his mind... the book title escapes me (I have it in my library but I've a boston terrier napping on my lap who's too adorable to wake up) but the marketing angle was that it was a product of Mr. X who shall remain nameless because of a falling out blah blah whatever. The story of the book is irrelevant: his ideas aren't. Look for it on ebay because it's usually a lot cheaper than buying it direct from him or his resellers.

Which reminds me... Jay Abraham is a prodigious creator and an incessant marketer. Always coming up with new products each an order of magnitude better than the next. My viewpoint is biased because my exposure to him has been the aforementioned book, another book he released through traditional channels that can be found at book stores, and his various interviews but I got what I needed from those and didn't commit to anything else. Take what you will from that.

filmgeek's got the right idea. Also, ping your network for CFO-types. Maybe they can help you out. If you want to bounce ideas off someone email me at tacodog (at) gmail dot com. Working at a startup right now and it's a rare week when we aren't revising and editing our business plan.

Side note: a lot of direct marketers couldn't care less how attractive their websites or sales letters are: if it continues to bring in orders then that's all that matters.
posted by Tacodog at 12:18 AM on November 26, 2005 [1 favorite]

I second the MBA suggestion; I'm taking an Executive MBA at the moment, and have been using as many of the modules as possible to refine a business idea that I've had for a while now.

On the whole, it works pretty well - after the lectures & reading, I write then submit my case study. Later I present it to the class who tears it to shreds from all angles. Combined with the Professors input, I've sharply refined my concept and now feel confident enough to actually give it a go.

Might not be as cheap as this guy, especially considering the time investment but on the other hand, you won't have to go running back to him if you'd like to refine or otherwise change your concept.
posted by Mutant at 2:44 AM on November 26, 2005

Two thoughts:

(1) Expensive consultants tend to have ideas that are expensive to implement. If capital is an issue for you, that might be the problem right.

(2) Don't worry so much about marketing anyway. Innovative companies get most of their initial success from compelling pricing or quality, which really does sell itself in the universe of early adopters. It's only after that first wave of success that conventional marketing becomes important. In other words, it's really true: build it and they will come.
posted by MattD at 5:00 AM on November 26, 2005

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