In the world of Money Twitter, Get Rich Quick, and Internet Marketing Gurus, growth is put on a pedestal:
It’s your #1 priority at all times.
It’s who you pray to before you fall asleep at night.
And it dominates your every thought.
In fact, not seeing growth as this objective moral good, a guru would tell you, means you ain’t really bout this life.
Only one small lil problem with this though:
When you spend your every waking moment concerned with growth, you may just build a 600-lb dire wolf of a monster that used to be your business.
Now, your business-turned-dire-wolf just comes around your way to collect its dues — which, in this case, means telling you just to “invest in your business or invest in yourself, no matter the cost.”
And you know what?
It’s how a lot of businesses suffer premature deaths.
Let’s take ESPN for example.
When I was a child, I watched ESPN every single morning before school. I knew what happened across all sports and leagues, I saw the top 10 highlights every day, and when I came home from school, I tuned into my favorite ESPN shows.
There were periods of my childhood where the only channel I turned on was ESPN.
But then, they took this “guru-y advice” too far:
They weren’t satisfied with being the #1 sports channel in history, which ironically planted the seeds to their destruction.
They shortly changed their tune, realizing capitalizing on the political zeitgeist was the only way to improve their ratings and viewership. And they suffered a long, harsh fall from grace. Now, kids can’t watch ESPN without wanting to dye their hair blue or become an activist for the “Outrage of the Day.”
There’s another, much different “brand” who has followed a similar trajectory:
There’s this little YouTube show I watch that keeps me up-to-date with the latest movies. (I won’t name them to protect the guilty.) It gives me ammo for when Peanut wants to go to the movies. And it’s a show I used to turn on when I first started my business and had to do at least 4 hours of lead gen on my own each day.
Well, they recently blew up. Both in a good and bad way:
Y’see, when the latest Avengers movies were released, they were on top of the world. Viewership was at an all-time high. And they used their newfound growth to “invest in their business,” like any good guru will tell you.
The quality of the cameras improved, boosting the quality of the show and the studio. But then, they made a mistake:
Again, unsatisfied with their growth, they wanted more. They got greedy. And they signed one of those sponsorship deals where now every video comes with the same played out ad reading—read in the insidious “ad voice” I’ve talked about before—which sabotaged the general experience of regular fans like me.
It don’t stop there either:
The person behind said show went out and hired a bunch of new employees:
What once was a one-man show with a few people helping a couple times per week became a full-fledged media show, with producers, co-hosts, graphic designers, and more.
I haven’t watched much of this show over the last year.
And it seems like a lot of the viewers are in the same boat as me…
In fact, the last episode I watched, I saw a bunch of mfs in the comments complaining that there’s only one co-host on the show each day, instead of the usual 2+ co-hosts.
Turns out, they had to cut the most important position on the show (from a viewer’s standpoint) because the money dried up.
Here’s why I bring this up:
The business and entertainment worlds are filled with cautionary tales like these of companies growing too fast and guillotining their companies in the process.
And simply being aware of this, of hearing the other side of the guru-induced echo chambers of growth, should give you pause before you blindly believe any tweet you see.
Growing too fast is almost as deadly as not growing at all.
Just some food for thought today.
On this point…
One of the best ways to grow smart—without risking that you're growing too fast—is by beefing up your email marketing. And as it turns out, I’m one of the most qualified mfs on the planet to help you do just that.