I had a substantial case of Buyer’s Remorse yesterday that I’m going to share with you because I think there are a couple valuable lessons for everyone.
If you’re not familiar with the idea of buyer’s remorse, then let me define it for you. In its simplest terms, buyer’s remorse is a feeling of regret when you purchase something. It usually happens pretty quickly and there are a few causes.
The biggest cause is the realization that maybe you bought something you don’t need. The next biggest cause is around cost – you buy something that is a bit expensive and start worrying about the price. Lastly, there’s the regret that comes from feeling like you made the wrong choice.
The case of buyer’s regret that I had yesterday was certainly the last example.
Let me tell you the story.
One project I’m working on is getting my existing video training courses onto the Casual Marketer site. For subscribers to the Casual Marketer Newsletter, they’re going to get free access to the courses and any updates for as long as they are a member. I’m also going to make the courses available for sale on the site to people who aren’t newsletter subscribers, but who just want to take one of my courses.
That all sounds easy enough, but surprisingly it’s a bit more difficult than you’d think at first glance.
To make it work the website needs some kind of membership system integrated into it so that people get access to what they pay for and newsletter subscribers get access to everything.
On top of that we also need some kind of payment gateway to be able to take money from customers. This step always sounds easy, but I have no desire at this stage to integrate a shopping cart into the site. This has been something I’ve struggled with already with Casual Marketer – I even wrote an email about it and posted it on the site.
And once you get those mechanical things working, you still need to upload the videos and build out the courses on the site.
My bright idea for this all along has been to use LifterLMS. I’d been thinking about it for about two months and had pretty much made my mind up. Pretty much.
Did I say, “pretty much” had my mind made up?
Because when it came time yesterday to pull the trigger, I bought something else. This other LMS product had a really good Gravity Forms integration and had documented how to take payments and setup new users. This is exactly how I do it for the Newsletter and so it was really an attractive option.
Unfortunately, after about three hours of playing with their actual LMS, you know, the core piece of technology I’d bought from them, I’d realized I’d made a mistake. A great big giant “oopsy”.
I was having a horrible case of Buyer’s Remorse.
Their product isn’t bad or anything, it just doesn’t suit me and the way I do my courses. My courses have a lot of lectures and I update the course structure or replace lectures periodically and to do that in their system is not easy. And while the Gravity Forms integration is well done, there are some other limitations which are pretty crappy as well.
Basically, I made a bad choice and was a couple hundred bucks into a plugin that just wasn’t going to do what I wanted it to do.
Let’s get into some of the lessons before I start crying.
For me the most important lesson from this was that I recognized quickly that this plugin wasn’t going to work for me and I didn’t spend days of time trying to force a round peg into a square hole. It’s one of those times where failing fast helps because it was just not going to work, so why waste the time.
The next lesson is that I quickly asked for a refund. I never ask for refunds. In the last ten years of buying information products, software and plugins, you could count on one hand the number of times I’ve asked for a refund for something.
This time though, I had made up my mind within three hours so I wrote their support team an email, explained my purchasing decision, where the shortcoming for me was and asked them if they’d consider refunding me. I am not a huge fan of refunds, but in this case, I think the request was pretty fair.
Before I go any further, I’m going to give a shout out to Bob Keen of iMember360 on this topic. A few years ago when I was an Infusionsoft customer, I had a couple memberships running on one of my sites using Bob’s software to drive them. Eventually I decided to shut those sites down and switch away from Infusionsoft. Unfortunately, I forgot to cancel the renewal of my iMember360 service and I got hit with the annual renewal price. I sent Bob an email and asked him to cancel it so I didn’t get hit the next year. Without asking Bob refunded me the full amount and said it was an honest mistake.
In business, be like Bob Keen. I recommend Bob Keen to everyone who does memberships with Infusionsoft – he has a good product and he’s a good person.
Moving right along to the last lesson, don’t compound your mistakes. When I realized this plugin wasn’t going to work for me, I started hunting around for other solutions. Then common sense kicked in and I stepped back. Buyer’s Remorse can actually lead you to making more bad decisions to “correct” your previous poor decisions. Don’t fall into this trap, just take some time to rethink the problem you’re trying to solve before doing anything else.
Probably the last thing I’ll add on this topic is, don’t beat yourself up over a bad purchasing decision. Just cut your losses and refocus. You can end up in a very negative place very quickly and nothing good comes from that.
On the other hand, life will be awesome and positive if you subscribe to the Casual Marketer Newsletter because you’ll learn in the February issue what I’m doing to counteract buyer’s remorse with my customers. And if you subscribe within the next 24 hours, you’ll not only get the February issue, but I’ll also toss in the January issue in your welcome pack as well. As if that weren’t enough, when my paperback book, “No Hyperbole: The New Rules of Online Business” is ready in a few weeks, that will land on your doorstep too!
The offer to get the February and January issues in your first month was extended until February 14th, 2016 and it won’t be extended again, so pick it up today or you’re going to miss out and then you’ll have Non-Buyer’s Remorse…
Yeah, that was a “Dad Joke”… I went there.