I haven’t written on RTM in a while. In all honesty, I have been too busy writing my thesis for my MBA to put together anything that matters on the subject of personal finance. However, tonight, as I am sitting here—and just put my son to sleep shortly after midnight—I realize that you have to find people in the right place, time, and circumstance in order to encourage change and have it impact their lives.
You see, a lot of people know what the right thing to do with their money is but because they cannot actually see the long-term impact them managing their money poorly has on them, it doesn’t really matter.
Think of it this way:
You own an apartment complex, you plant a lot of beautiful trees along the side of the property and it looks great. But in fifty years, the root systems of those trees wreak havoc on the foundation of the property making for expensive foundation repairs. A good intention or even a neutral intention, can cause damaging, long-term problems if you don’t think about the expected outcome.
So, to the question that is raised in the title: do those things matter? I think so, but they have to be used in the right manner.
Who wants to read a finance book that is solely about the terrible decisions you are making and how guilty you should feel? Not me. Who wants to read 600 pages only to have remembered about 50 pages worth of content (and that’s being generous)? Not me. Who wants to listen to a two-hour podcast on budgeting? No one in the world.
Even the biggest nerd looks at a two-hour long podcast and turns away.
Since I’ve started this business, I’ve always wanted personal finance to be easily digestible. That is why my investment strategy is boring, but practical. The way that I budget is simple, but effective. And the long-term strategy I craft for each client is tangible and plausible. Meaning you can see it and it isn’t wishful thinking.
Videos, blogs, pods, short films, and books are always going to help people—but with a topic like personal finance, where so many people are falling short, it is important to understand your audience in order to help them.
A good example is our website. Everything is free. No ads, no signups, just free advice from a guy who has made some big financial mistakes. I always found it curious when someone says, “Do you want to know the secret to being rich?” Well just pay shipping and handling on this 24-page booklet, give us your address and phone number and we will tell you how.
That is absurd.
If you do that, stop it.
Find a medium that is effective for your audience without exploiting them and use that.
I hope the pods, blogs, and PDFs we have put out at RTM hit with a majority of the audience. If not, then we will keep crafting them until it does. Your feedback drives the content.
Thanks for following along.