So you want to be an Internet marketer (IM)? You’ve seen those little ads all over the Internet promising you the moon; make money online, $1000 in a day, work from home, say goodbye to your crappy boss. Now it’s your turn to make money online marketing whatever, you just want the money, right? Well, it is ads like those that make IM the scam that it is today.

Yes, I said scam, and not in the “this is a highly effective word to use in ads even if it has nothing to do with what you’re talking about because people will always click on it” sense of the word. I mean “scam” as in the dictionary definition; “a fraudulent scheme for making a quick profit, swindle.”

Is Internet marketing a scam, a swindle? No, it’s a business and yes you can make money online marketing all kinds of products. But those rather unsavory individuals and groups who promote the concept as a way to make money quickly are often less than forthcoming with the truth about this industry. These are the “fish oil” salesmen of questionable ethics.

Let’s start with the failure rate. Somewhere around 95% of all people who attempt to make money online marketing end up quitting in only a few months. This is often after spending hundreds, hundreds and even thousands of dollars on all the helpful ebooks, programs, gurus and “universities” that promise to make it easy.

The easy truth about Internet marketing is there is Nothing Easy about it. It is hard work often taking as many hours a week as a full time job and years of this to make a decent living at it. But this isn’t how the ads make it sound, you say. Well of course not, the people who write those little pay per click (PPC) ads that promise the moon are “marketing” their product, in this case the product is “Internet marketing.”

A basic principle behind successful Internet marketing is to find a “niche market” or a market that has not already been exploited by those Internet marketers before you. And then through careful use of keywords (those words you type into Google to find what you’re looking for) that also haven’t been overused by other advertisers, they attract buyers to a product. In this case said product is the dream of making money quickly and easily.

Part of the American dream, or maybe the human dream, is to make money by doing very little allowing you the time to enjoy all those benefits of wealth. Internet marketers selling Internet marketing are selling exactly that dream. Unfortunately, in this case, that dream is just that, an illusion.

One of the more visible organizations promising you can make money online marketing is Wealthy Affiliate. They like to push their “supportive, helpful” site as a “university” for learning the skills of IM. But like all other IM gurus, they know what the average student coming in doesn’t know, that a huge percentage of these newbies will be gone in less than a few months.

With this knowledge in mind it makes sense that Wealthy Affiliate would immediately barrage their new members with the plethora of IM gear they sell to help their members make money online marketing whatever they choose. It also makes sense that they would use all of these new members (or as many as they can convince) to immediately go out and corral other new members. Why should they build their pyramid alone? Remember, all these gurus Know the real numbers and know how much time they have to leverage their customers, er, members.

I recently got an email from an Internet marketer that enjoys using the “down home, aw shucks” style of selling. In this email, he equated forgetting to tell his wife that he loved her and watching a tear fall from her eye with forgetting to write me, one of his closest 25,000 friends. As you can see, there is no limit to how low these marketers will go to make a sale. And yes, this particular marketer is always selling something, that’s his business. He has merely chosen the “I’m your friend, just like you” style of selling, the same way Wealthy Affiliate has gone the “12,000 Wealthy Affiliate members can’t be wrong” style (regardless of how many actual members they have).

And that is my point, IM is in the business of sales and selling is a tough job. If you want to make money online marketing anything, it’s all about the return on investment, so if there is a little fibbing done along the way, well so what. Having a full set of ethics is most certainly a drawback to success in the IM business. So for those of you thinking that maybe just one of those little PPC ads is telling the truth, rest assured, they are merely selling you a dream. They will leverage you and your money for as long and fast as they can knowing full well that unless you are part of a tiny minority, you will be gone in a few months.

And when most of you give up with IM seeing it for what it really is; Hard Work, those Internet marketers will be on to the next “member” without so much as a tear in their eye. Because these marketers of Internet marketing know what PT Barnum knew long ago, “there’s one born every second.”