Monday, [8:28] PM
Did you hear about Don Lapre, the self-styled King of Infomercials?
He was found dead in a federal prison facility in Florence, Arizona, just a few hours before he was scheduled to stand trial on charges of deceiving and cheating investors and customers out of almost $52 million.
Was he guilty?
I have no idea. I know nothing about this case and his “Greatest Vitamin in the World” deal that the feds claim was an elaborate hoax.
The only thing I remember about Don Lapre was he was selling some kind of “get rich with tiny classified ads” course a long time ago with infomercials.
It sounded like B.S. back then… but a LOT of people bought that course.
Just the title of his latest deal, “The Greatest Vitamin in the World” sets off my personal B.S. detector… but maybe mine is more sensitive than the average Joe’s.
A good salesman trained in the secrets of persuasion can use his skills to sell good products that bring value to people’s lives… or complete crap in a box.
The feds allege Don Lapre chose to sell the former… and apparently it ain’t the first time.
I honestly don’t know. I have no credible info about all this… and frankly, I’m not that interested. I retired from the enforcement thang back in 1997… and vowed to never go back.
But I DO know this:
The minute you hang out your shingle in the weight loss or biz-op niches, you stand a really good chance of getting on some alphabet agency’s radar.
The more successful you are and the higher profile your advertising, (for example, national infomercials) your chance of evoking the ire of an alphabet agency goes up exponentially.
Talk to anybody who has been the target of an investigation and ask about the nice, friendly alphabet agency bureaucrats. These are people you do NOT want to taunt. They can turn your life into a living hell and leave you living on the streets, broke and penniless with the simple stroke of some just-hired, wet-behind-the-ears rookie’s pen.
It really is that easy for them.
No due process, no 4th amendment, no jury of your peers… NONE of the protections we’ve been erroneously told we’re entitled to under the u.s. CONstitution.
You normally have to be a pretty big operation for these guys to target you… so you shouldn’t lose sleep over all this. But here’s a word of warning:
If you have a business in the weight loss or biz-op niches (the alphabet agencies favorite fishing spots) you better make damn sure you’ve dotted all your “i’s” and crossed your “t’s.”
In addition to good customer service and always honoring your refund policy, here are two things to keep you off the radar:
1. For the love of GOD… never, ever, ever lie or exaggerate claims. (That’s what gets guys like Don Lapre on the radar and in trouble.) And…
2. In your sales copy…
Back up all your claims with as many
credible proof elements as possible!
Those two things will go a long way in keeping you off the radar and out of trouble… and sleeping well at night.