Are You Living Your Passion?

Post topics about the business side of magic.

Postby Lou Serrano » 03/22/11 08:14 PM

A couple of weeks ago I gave my very first lecture for magicians at the Magic Castle in Hollywood, CA. Although Ive done many speaking presentations for corporate audiences, this was the first time Ive done a formal speaking presentation for a group of my peers.

For corporate audiences I usually speak about general success principles and I use magic as a metaphor or as pure entertainment during the presentation. This presentation used no magic. Instead, I relied on my specialized knowledge and skills on marketing and business development and I shared this knowledge with the attendees.

It was a very profound experience for me. I was able to impact the lives of people in a way that Ive never been able to do before. People left inspired, motivated, and with specific tools to grow their businesses. I left this event on a high note.

The very next day, life had a very funny way of showing up. I was sitting at my desk doing some work. I started feeling light-headed. My arm became numb, and I felt pressure on my chest. My heart started racing, and my pulse was measured at 132 beats per minute. I called a friend and he took me to the emergency room. Once there, my blood pressure was measured at 186/122, which is basically a walking stroke victim waiting to happen...

To get the rest of the story and watch the accompanying video, please Click Here

To your success!

Lou Serrano
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Postby jason156 » 03/23/11 02:39 PM

Wow, sounds like you had a panic attack, hope you're feeling better.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 03/23/11 02:46 PM

Just another free advertisement.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
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Postby Brad Henderson » 03/23/11 04:14 PM

I think that's the first thing they teach you at "how to sell success" school.
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/23/11 05:41 PM

Richard,

I tend to think of it as a win-win situation for both of us. I continue to provide fresh content to your forums, and hopefully, I will attract new people that have an interest in my thoughts. You may not see it that way. If that's the case, and you prefer I stop posting links to my articles and videos, all you have to do is say the word, and I will immediately cease.

Respectfully,

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Postby Ted M » 03/23/11 06:04 PM

I think of your posts as forum spam.
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/23/11 06:17 PM

Brad,

I realized two years ago, when I intentionally put myself in the spotlight among magicians, that not only would I attract people with a sincere interest in furthering their art and their businesses, but I would also attract people that would relish in attempting to tear me down. Success has a funny way of attracting those kind of people. Luckily, those people are few and far between.

I've been a student of magic and marketing for over 17 years. Until two years ago, nobody in the magic world outside of Southern CA and The Magic Castle knew who I was. Two years ago I decided to share my passion and my knowledge with the people around me with a specific attention to magicians. A niche I know much about.

By putting out product and promoting my thoughts and my business to the magic world, I've basically placed a bulls eye on myself, so your comment comes as no surprise. You can search the web and you will see a plethora of positive things being said about me. You will also find some very nasty things being said about me, but they all come from people that have never met me and don't know me at all. It comes with the territory, and I accept it.

All of this to say, I welcome your comment. Too bad it isn't related to the topic I posted, but I will accept it nonetheless.

Wishing you much success!

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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/23/11 06:22 PM

Ted,

I guess it will be up to Mr. Kaufman to decide whether it's spam or not. If he believes as you do, I will immediately refrain from posting any more links to my articles and videos on this forum.

Respectfully,

Lou Serrano
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/23/11 06:36 PM

Richard,

If you prefer to PM or call me directly, I'd be more than happy to discuss this issue with you in private.

Sincerely,

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Postby Brad Henderson » 03/23/11 06:52 PM

Lou,

Commenting on the thing itself is most relevant. You are 'selling success.' many others do the same thing. We have seen examples on this board alone of numerous 'success sellers' each using the forum to advertise their packages (no innuendo intended) This is what you have done and are doing. Commenting on that seems completely on topic.

Your posts serve a single purpose, to sell your " product. "

Please do not advertise on our leg and tell us it's 'giving'.
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/23/11 06:59 PM

Brad,

Where in my post, in my article, or in my video did I try to sell anything? Please point it out.

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Postby Doc Dixon » 03/23/11 07:06 PM

Brad Henderson wrote:Please do not advertise on our leg and tell us it's 'giving'.


That's a great, great line.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 03/23/11 07:08 PM

When I click on the line in your original post to "get the rest of the story," I am directed to your website where I am greeted with this header:

Lou Serrano Marketing.com
How to Build Your Business Faster, Easier, and More Effectively Without Spending a Fortune
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/23/11 07:14 PM

Richard Kaufman wrote:When I click on the line in your original post to "get the rest of the story," I am directed to your website where I am greeted with this header:

Lou Serrano Marketing.com
How to Build Your Business Faster, Easier, and More Effectively Without Spending a Fortune





Yes, you do, and all the information that I'm sharing on my blog is absolutely FREE. It might require the investment of some money to implement the ideas, but you certainly won't be spending a fortune.

Again, I ask the question, where am I selling anything on my original post, in my article, or in my video?

And once again, all you have to do is say the word, and i will immediately refrain from posting any links to my articles and videos on this forum.

Respectfully,

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Postby Brad Henderson » 03/23/11 07:22 PM

Do you really think we are so niave?

These posts are a marketing tool. They direct people to your site where you sell products including this one: http://www.sixfiguremagic.com/

They also serve to sell YOU. You are the product.

While the post on this forum may not be immediate advertising, please don't pretend that it is not a driver to your site where things are sold and information is collected for the purpose of sales.

A dear friend of mine regularly pays hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars to attend web marketing seminars. Posting articles online to bump your site up in the listings, using forums to direct traffic to commercial sites - this is all SOP. You are using this forum for your own gain.
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/23/11 07:51 PM

Brad,

I openly state I've been a student of marketing for over 17 years, I've invested well over $30,000 over the years studying marketing, including attending seminars in which I've invested several thousand dollars to attend. These articles are definitely a marketing tool for me. I'm not directly sending people to my SixFigureMagic site, but thank you for promoting it.

I have not pretended anything. I'm a firm believer that in order to gain you first have to give. My articles and videos are intended to give free and valuable information to people that are interested in Marketing and Magic Business, which is the forum I'm posting in.

If I didn't know anything about marketing why would I post on this forum? Do you believe that someone that is an expert at marketing, should not market? Do you honestly believe that I shouldn't make my products and services available to the people that want more information? I wouldn't listen to anybody that was talking about marketing and business development if that person didn't know how to do those things himself.

If you aren't interested in learning about marketing why do you read my posts? I learn more by watching people do what they do as opposed to listening to what they say. Anyone that is truly interested in Marketing and Magic Business will learn much not only from my words but from my actions.

You've already admitted that I have not done any "immediate advertising". If you aren't interested in growing your business, nobody is forcing you to read or listen to what I have to say, but why do you want to force your view on the other readers of this forum? Most people that read these threads never participate, they just lurk in the shadows. The proof is here for everyone to see. There are very few of us participating in this discussion, but there are already over 162 people that have viewed this thread as of this posting.

In any case, it makes no sense to argue with you. The last word lies with The Chief, Richard Kaufman. This is his forum. If Richard wants me to refrain from posting links to my articles and videos, all he has to do is tell me to stop, and I will immediately do so.

Respectfully,

Lou Serrano

P.S. I actually have a gig to go to tonight. Yes, I'm actually a working professional magician. So as much as I would like to stay and reply to the onslaught of messages that are sure to come, I will have to wait until later tonight to respond. Until then, I'm sure you will have a field day. Peace.
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Postby Brad Henderson » 03/23/11 08:01 PM

It's a shame that 30K didn't buy a less predictable response.

Have fun at your gig. I'm sure I'll see you abusing the forum again soon.

(And, as a forum member, I will say that it is my opinion that posts of this nature take advantage of the forum. They are, as mentioned above, tools for marketing.
As such, they should be restricted to placement in the "sales" section, or be conveyed through proper paid advertisements.

As Lou said:

"Do you honestly believe that I shouldn't make my products and services available to the people that want more information?"

I have no problem with that. That's what ads are for.

I realize this is only my opinion. But if RK wants to know how members of the forum feel, those are my feelings. This is true whether it is Milliard Grubb, Dave Dee, that juggler guy, or whomever.)
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Postby Brad Henderson » 03/23/11 08:12 PM

From Lou's site:

Your blog will serve as the hub of your entire social networking structure. . .
You can use all your social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Youtube, etc.) to direct traffic to your blog. From there you can direct traffic to your other websites depending on the needs of your clients.

Keep in mind that putting up a blog is not like the movie, The Field of Dreams, where if you build it they will come. People wont find your blog unless you promote it. You can do that through all your social media networks, along with posting messages in online forums, and writing and submitting e-zine articles.

You will find that as you promote your blog you will increase your sphere of influence. More people will find your blog and in turn your business will grow.
(emphasis added)


So, this is really about Lou growing HIS business. Not ours.

It's all rather like Kenton Knepper trying to use wonder words on you, after he already sold you the tapes!
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/23/11 08:21 PM

Brad,

Thank you for sharing your marketing expertise. I know you have a wonderful track record for marketing.

Off to my gig,

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Postby Jim Riser » 03/23/11 08:58 PM

I have always felt that motivation came from within rather than from some overpaid hired speaker. I've had to attend way too many "motivational speeches" over the years. All were drivel. Obviously I do not need nor want such crap. I choose to ignore such postings as I feel the product of such advertising is worthless.
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Postby Brad Henderson » 03/23/11 09:45 PM

Thanks for the for the not so thinly vieled insult. I assume your next blog post is on customer service and building relationships?

Whether you have a day of marketing experience or a decade is irrelevant. Whether I do matters not. What matters is you are using this forum to market yourself and your products.

Buy an ad. (just the opinion of a forum reader)
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 03/23/11 10:29 PM

In my office (outside the HR Department) are dozens and dozens of management and self-improvement books. They order countless copies and give them to middle and upper managers who then pass them on to their team members as required reading. Ive read my share of books on hiding cheese, captaining ships and goodness knows what else. They all have the following in common:

They are thin with lots of white space and large type.

They are all regurgitated and paraphrased Napoleon Hill, whose book one can buy in a used bookstore for a buck.

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Postby Brad Henderson » 03/23/11 11:03 PM

Amen on the Hill reference. I have given "talks" on occasion. I always made it clear that everything being offered boiled down to what Hill wrote ages ago, it's all just a different veneer/metaphor.

I realize that this thread has become antagonistic, as many of these marketing threads do. I have been trying to determine why I feel so strongly.

I guess its that, when I come to a magic forum, I don't want to be "marketed at".

I know there are ads - and they are a necessary evil to "keep the lights on" - but having said that, I don't think I have EVER intentionally clicked on an ad on a magic forum.

Oddly, I love the marketplace section. And I don't even mind reading (in that section) AN announcement about someone's new product. That, to me, at least feels honest.

But these types of posts ARE tools for driving people to sites, to lead them to other sites, to generate sales.

It just seems dirty and deceitful to me. I know, I know - everybody's doing it, but do we need that on a magic forum? Make an announcement you have something to sell in the marketplace section. If you want to make more than one post, buy an ad. But let's not try to kid a roomful of kidders.

Just for the record, I once told a telemarketer that Jesus Christ himself could call me up and offer eternal salvation for the asking, but if he did it as an unsolicited call, and especially while reading a script, I would say "no thanks" and take my chances in hell.

I also refuse to buy from anyone who uses those stupid direct mail templates.

I find them an affront, and I realize, that's just me - but I don't think these "techniques" serve the forum. If someone wants to market, make AN announcement in the marketplace section or take out an ad.

Otherwise, I want no part of it.
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Postby Dave Magee » 03/24/11 12:51 AM

This whole thread is so typical of Magicians it's really sad and pathetic,if you dont want the guy to advertise just tell him and let that be it. To eat each other up like this really, just sad!!!!
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 03/24/11 01:37 AM

And now this thread has been linked to on Mr. Serrano's FaceBook page. Apparently I am among a group of small, pathetic jerks who cannot wait to tear people apart (while calling someone "small and pathetic" is taking the highroad).

It's amazing that those commenting (including Mr. Magee) were able to discover all that in my one post. It usually takes people several of my posts before they discover that I'm a small, pathetic jerk.
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/24/11 01:40 AM

Dave Magee wrote:This whole thread is so typical of Magicians it's really sad and pathetic,if you dont want the guy to advertise just tell him and let that be it. To eat each other up like this really, just sad!!!!


Dave,

Thank you for being the voice of reason. I was going to respond to all of the above comments, and then I read your post, and now I've decided to ignore the nonsense, and just state my case.

Over the last two years I have invested thousands of advertising dollars in Genii Magazine and the Genii forums. I will venture to say that I've probably invested $10,000 over the last two years in Genii.

The only reason I stopped advertising is because the ads stopped producing results. The last several months I advertised, I either broke even or I lost money. I'm not in business to lose money. I'm in business to make money.

Contrary to popular belief, I don't make any money by posting my comments and links to my articles here on the Genii Forums. The occasional sale doesn't even come close to paying for the amount of time I spend on here.

I released two products in 2009. I didn't release any products in 2010. Now, I have three more products scheduled to be released this year. When I'm ready to release these products, my plan is to advertise in both Genii Magazine and the Genii Forums. Until then, I won't be throwing my money away, because a few people here on this forum have an issue with the way I run my business.

The decision sits firmly on the lap of The Chief, Richard Kaufman. If Richard believes that my posts take away from the experience here on the Genii Forums, then he should speak up and tell me to stop. Otherwise, I plan on giving away as much free information as possible and using this forum as a vehicle to have my voice heard.

My business does not depend on this forum to be successful. I have dozens of strategies all working at the same time, and I have several new marketing strategies that will be implemented in the next few weeks. This is what I do. I'm a marketer. It's my passion. Not only marketing my products and services, but sharing my knowledge and expertise about marketing with the people that care for it.

In the end, my belief is this: the only way to prosper is to give more value to the world around you then you take. My articles and videos are designed to do just that. The viewers can use the ideas to grow their business without buying anything from me, and most do exactly that.

If you are trying to grow your business, then the Marketing & Magic Business forum, here on the Genii forums should be the place to go to for answers. I believe my posts contribute to that end.

If Mr. Kaufman believes otherwise, all he has to do is say so, and I will cease.

Respectfully,

Lou Serrano
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/24/11 02:04 AM

Brad,

Continue to rant all you want. I have decided to cease listening to your jibberish.

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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/24/11 02:37 AM

Apparently Brad deleted his post that I was responding to in my last post. Makes it seem like I'm talking about a previous post of his. I'm not. I should have quoted his last post so I could have a record of it. Oh well. This last post of mine can now be ignored.

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Postby Dave Magee » 03/24/11 02:40 AM

Dustin , I dont know ya buddy and I never singled you out, you did that yourself which again is typical, im not defending lou S never even met him, and I never said you were small or pathetic(sounds to me you have some self image problems)I was simply stating that this seems trivial and there must be better things to talk about. I guess the point I was trying to make was instead of taking up all this space either tell the guy to stop or let it go and live with it! Its real simple maybe thats the problem, its just to simple. Dont know why you took that personally but thats your deal partner. Best to you though!
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Postby jason156 » 03/24/11 02:48 AM

Good Lord, give the guy a break, he nearly had a stroke two weeks ago; he doesn't need more stress in his life.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 03/24/11 02:58 AM

Mr. Magee said, I never singled you out

Dustin said, Apparently I am among a group of small, pathetic

Mr. Magee said (on FB) they like to tear everyone up they are so small and pathetic. [Emphasis mine.]

I never accused you of singling me out. I clearly said I was among a group. Im also quite certain that I didnt misquote you above, so what did you really mean when you wrote what you did? [Rhetorical question; no need to comment].

My self-image is fine, thank you. And you just keep on taking that highroad.

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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/24/11 03:00 AM

And so it continues...
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 03/24/11 03:12 AM

Lou, I'm just callin' 'em like I see 'em. Nothing cracks me up more than people who rail on about people who say/write [whatever] then say/write exactly what they say bothers them.

Then, just to top it off, they misrepresent what was actually said/written--either on purpose or out of ignorance; but either way, it really doesn't matter, does it?--and then claim that they did not say/write what they in fact did.

By the way, it was a pleasure meeting you last night.

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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/24/11 03:30 AM

Dustin Stinett wrote:

By the way, it was a pleasure meeting you last night.

Dustin


I was actually very happy to meet you last night. After this thread, I was having second thoughts.

Wishing you the very best,

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Postby Dustin Stinett » 03/24/11 03:54 PM

Lou,

Having those second thoughts is certainly your prerogative, but while you are thinking, please consider just what it is I did to give you such pause.

A helpful(?) review:

I posted an opinionone I stand behindthat the crop of books in this genre are mere derivations of Napoleon Hills Think and Grow Rich, a book that was written in the 1930s. All these other authors have done is distill his ideaswhich took an enormous amount of research and interviewing of successful captains of business and other public figures of the timeinto (essentially) sound bites and bullet points, and of course modernized the content as needed.

But the fact is, virtually everything in these books can found within Hills work; a book I highly recommend by the way. Yes, it is much longer than todays easily digestible books, but the message and the techniques in it make up the very foundation of the business you have entered. If you havent read it, youre doing yourself and your clients a disservice. (I first read the book in the mid 80s when I got into the marketing businesswhich remains my primary livelihood, by the way.)

Then I put up a note that pointed out that you posted about this thread on your Facebook page. (While some might question your actual motivation for doing so, I will not.*)

I did that solely because it is, in fact, newsworthy and therefore part of my job here.

However, I freely admit, in that same post I pointed out the demonstrable hypocrisy of someone who commented there. This person felt that it was sad that magicians tear apart (or, to use another word, attack) others and then called them small and pathetic.

This person apparently misses the undeniable fact that calling someone (or even worse, as in this case, an entire group in general) small and pathetic is most certainly an attack.

All I did was call him on it.

He should have stopped with its sad that magicians tear apart others. His pointa good oneis made and he remains above the fray. Instead, he went on the attack. That is hypocrisy, pure and simple.

(By the way, I am just as guilty as most in making this sort of mistake. It is a terrible human flaw. The only difference is that I recognize it and point it out wherever and whenever I can. Its just a way to try and cure myselfand perhaps othersof this defect of character.)

Then this same person unequivocally denied even doing it and further claimed that I wrote something that I, in fact, did not write. When my words are purposely or mistakenly misrepresented, you can bet the ranch that I am not going to stand by and allow it. So, again, I called him on it.

So lets look at all this combined:

I have written nothing negative directly at you.

I can make the argument that two people (including me) on this thread were insultedeven though their comments were not directed at you personallyby at least one of those coming to your defense on Facebook (though he claims here that he didnt come to your defense**).

*I made this comment on purpose to show how, while claiming that I am not doing something, I am actually doing it. This goes to the absurd notion (**) that the poster did not come to your defense. This is a very old and abused tactic used mostly by poor politicians, executives, and salespeople. So I officially withdraw and apologize for the comment. It was there purely as an example.

Again, it was a pleasure meeting you (and, you must admitsince I know that others not doing so was bothering you that nightthat at least I recognized you).

Regards,
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/24/11 04:48 PM

Dustin,

Thank you for the helpful review.

It's my opinion Think and Grow Rich is the most important book ever written on the subject of business and personal development. It's a book I've read many times and I still use it as a reference today. I also recommend it to anyone seriously interested in succeeding in business.

That shouldn't discount the value of any books written since then. Although some books have paraphrased what was written in that book, many go way beyond that. It would be like saying, "All you need is the information found in Greater Magic (originally published in 1938, one year after Think and Grow Rich was published) to make a living as a magician." While that may be true, it certainly doesn't discount the value of the plethora of books and videos that have been released since then.

Times have changed drastically since 1937 when Napoleon Hill's book was published. Technology alone is unrecognizable from the time of Hill. Lap top computers, home publishing, smart phones, email, Facebook, Youtube, etc. are certainly not addressed in that classic work. Modern books, courses, seminars, etc. do address how to use modern technology to succeed in business.

As for not being recognized, I'm never bothered. I find it amusing.

One last thought, and this is just my biased opinion. As the moderator of this forum, I'm amazed that you allow such behavior by some of the members of this group. It feels like bickering, insecure, school children that were not taught any manners. It's no wonder so many magicians, refuse to come on these forums and participate. Who wants to get involved in such childish behavior? I certainly don't, but I figure until attitudes change I will have to put up with all this nonsense to have my voice heard. Maybe if we were to hold the members of this forum to a higher standard than most, we would see much more participation, and in turn see greater success for everyone involved.

Respectfully,

Lou Serrano
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 03/24/11 05:27 PM

I guess well have to agree to disagree about the books (though I am among those who would say all one needs is Greater Magicbut I do have a modest magic library, so your point is taken).

The notion of Richard, Jim, and me hanging around this site all day everyday to snip every snarky post is simply impractical. Its also an incredibly subjective exercise that causes more problems than it solves. When we do delete something that is truly offensive and even libelous, we are attacked for being anti free speech. Imagine, then, if we started foisting our differing sensibilities on everyone else. Its just not worth it. Besides, I am an advocate of allowingwithin some reasonpeoples words to speak for themselves and their character. Goodness knows its done wonders for me. Not to mention its a whole heck of a lot easier on us (the moderators).

So now let it be said that I am a lazy, small, pathetic jerk.*

Dustin


*For those who didnt get itand you know who you arein my earlier post where I say that it usually takes more than one of my posts for people to get that I am a jerk: that was a joke and not a sign of my self-loathing (though all good humor is based in truth and/or fact). In actual fact, its a very OLD joke:

First Guy: Youre an idiot!
Second Guy Youve only known me for five minutes! It usually takes people hours to realize that Im an idiot!
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Postby Lou Serrano » 03/24/11 05:32 PM

Dustin,

Point taken. I guess we'll continue on the journey, and play the game the way it is.

Wishing you much success!

Lou Serrano
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Lou Serrano
 
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Location: Agoura Hills, CA

Postby Smurf » 03/24/11 10:44 PM

Lou,

I pulled out an old Genii today (Nov 1978) to do some light reading, and I noticed a Ricky Serrano (Castle Bar Manager) mentioned in Peter Pit's Knights at the Magic Castle column. Is he any relation?

John
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Postby Raleigh » 03/24/11 10:46 PM

Lou , it is nice of you to offer your advice and opinion to others. If you don't like it don't read Lou's post and be nice already ....... Some are here to sell , give advise and most are on here bragging about how wonderful they are ..... see it all the time ! Lou is here being nice ...... it's your option if you buy from him.
Raleigh
 
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Joined: 01/23/10 12:47 PM
Location: Las Vegas , Nv.

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