On My Honor, I’ll Do My Best …
Somewhere in my house I have one or two pins left from my days with the Webelos and a couple of badges left over from my days with the Boy Scouts. If I’m not mistaken, the main badge floating around my office is from when I reached “Second Class.” And now thanks to the good folks at Active Rain, I officially can be “second class” again because I ain’t got no steenkin’ baches.
Now there’s an obvious difference at play here. When I was in Webelos and Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts, I had to earn badges. One day I had to deliver roses to my sick neighbor to turn my Bobcat pin upside down. Another day I had to help an elderly person across the street whether they liked it or not. (And Jay T. still hasn’t forgiven me for dragging him across that road.)
Aside from the incredibly impressive 300,000-point badge, though, you don’t really have the earn any of these baubles on Active Rain. You just have to pony up the dough for one product or another. Assuming you are one of the people who haven’t quite figured out you ought not have to pay a monthly fee to blog.
(Note: for those handful of you who poke your head in out of the rain and realize there’s a larger world out there, please tell the others that it’s safe to venture outside the compound walls. Really. They’ll be okay. Just make sure to avoid snarling vendordogs.)
Badges as Negotiable Tender
As Bob Stewart called me a cynical bastard last summer (thank you, by the way), he did say that he gets it … that I’m one of the small percentage of people who don’t need Active Rain because I can do my own thing. In that vain, I admit that I also get it. Active Rain, with its point culture and the “great post” mantra, can be of tremendous benefit to beginning bloggers as they try to learn what they’re doing. Badges and gizmos and brownie points all help encourage the newbies to do what’s hardest … to keep writing.
In time, though, most of us discover there are more rewarding ways of being encouraged. Like, just maybe, receiving a commission check based on something you wrote or through other blog-related ideas you might happen to have. And those checks at the end of the day mean much more than some spiffy badge since my mortgage company doesn’t accept badges as payment.
You don’t need to have a Rainmaker badge to really be a rainmaker. Because being a real estate rainmaker has nothing do with how many products you purchase on Active Rain and everything to do with the amount of leads you generate for your own business. It’s not about them. It’s about you.
That’s what you need to keep telling yourself … it’s not about them, it’s about you. Well, and your mortgage companies. If you find one that does accept Active Rain badges as payment, let me know … I might actually step back into the compound and tell 10 people a day that they wrote a great post.