One of the great things about the Internet is that it allows everyone to express and opinion on whatever topic they desire. One of the bad things about the Internet is it allows anyone to express an opinion on whatever they desire, regardless of whether they have any authority to do so.
I was debating whether I would write on this topic as it can be somewhat controversial as some people may view it as a censorship on free speech. I’m actually all for people being allowed to express themselves but as readers we need to be really careful about who’s advice we listen to and adopt in our businesses.
For example, the other day I was having a really “vigorous debate” in a forum about monetising domain traffic. The person I was debating was very outspoken and to be quite honest with you at times insulting and sarcastic. In the end I found out they did about thirty cents a day in traffic revenue. If you didn’t know this then you could be mistaken into thinking they were an authority on their topic and earning millions of dollars per year.
There’s a really good saying which goes somewhat like the following, “By their fruit you shall know them.” This means that you should look at what a person does and has achieved rather than just what they say. On the Internet anyone can speak but very few people can do.
The classic book, “The Richest Man In Babylon” puts it this way. Go to the jeweller to learn about jewellery and the baker to learn about baking bread but you will lose your shirt if you get advice about investing in domains from the brick layer.
Was the author of the book having a go at brick layers? Heck no! What he was saying was be really careful who’s advice you apply to your business. Seek out a somebody, not an anybody as you will save yourself a world of pain.
I’ve been involved directly in the domain industry for over 15 years and during that time I’ve seen people come and go. Many have been like meteors screaming, “Hey look at me!” only to burn up in their own self-importance and disappear. There are some that have stood the test of time and are achieving amazing things.
When I attend domain conferences I like getting alongside some of the really successful “doers” in our industry to get their thoughts on a wide range of topics. These people are often the quite ones that sit in the corner and generally mind their own business while they finalise deal after deal. These are the people that I absolutely love and cherish listening to. Many of them I call my friends.
Does this mean that we shouldn’t listen to new comers to the industry? Absolutely we should but look at their “fruit” before you decide to completely adopt their business idea.
If you are new to the domaining my suggestion would be to get alongside those investors that have survived and flourished in the ups and downs of the industry. Don’t be afraid to pay for good advice and be very discerning whom you listen to. Remember, we have two ears and one mouth. Act in the same ratio.