Are These “Online Gurus” Just Selling Courses to Make Money?

Are These “Online Gurus” Just Selling Courses to Make Money?

Have you ever found yourself scrolling through endless posts promising the secret sauce to making money online, only to end up more confused than when you started? Yeah, me too. I’ve ventured down the rabbit hole of online courses, each one flaunting the ultimate blueprint to earning passive income through affiliate marketing. But here’s the real scoop: not all courses are created equal, and not all gurus are the altruistic mentors they claim to be.

Hi, I’m Rob, and like many of you, I was drawn into the world of affiliate marketing with high hopes and a healthy dose of skepticism. Along the way, I’ve shelled out more than just pocket change on various courses, learning a thing or two about who really benefits from these programs. In this blog, I’m going to take you behind the scenes of the so-called “guru” courses. From personal triumphs to lessons learned the hard way, I’m here to share it all.

So, whether you’re a seasoned pro looking to expand your toolkit, or you’re just starting out and trying to figure out where to invest your hard-earned cash, you’re in the right place. Let’s unravel the mystery together and find out: Are these “online gurus” really here to teach us, or are they just in it for the money?

Who Are These Online Gurus?

Below is an overview of some key figures in the world of affiliate marketing. Each of these individuals claims to offer valuable insights into making money online, but let’s take a closer look at what they provide and at what cost.

Name Expertise Content Offered Course Cost
Anthony Morrison Internet marketing strategies and entrepreneurship Courses, webinars, books Varies by course
Marcus Campbell Affiliate marketing techniques, making money through blogs Training programs, webinars Starts at $127
Pat Flynn Building passive income streams through diverse online channels Courses, podcasts, books Courses around $297
Finch Sells Affiliate marketing strategies, from a personal and direct approach Blog posts, personal coaching N/A (free content)
Missy Ward Growing online businesses, with a focus on affiliate marketing Courses, seminars, books Varies by course
Shawn Collins Affiliate marketing and SEO expertise Webinars, podcasts, blog posts Free to access content
Zac Johnson Blogging and affiliate marketing training Online courses, blogs Courses start at $47
Ian Fernando Online strategy and advertising for affiliate marketers Courses, blogs, speaking Courses around $97
John Chow Monetizing blogs and advanced affiliate marketing strategies Training courses, books Courses start at $497
Kirsty McCubbin Affiliate marketing tailored to female entrepreneurs Online guides, consultancy Consultancy fees apply
Andrew Payne Consultant on growing and managing affiliate programs Consulting, training materials Contact for pricing

Note: The prices mentioned are approximate and can vary based on promotions, bundles, or updates from the gurus themselves.

Personal Experiences with the Gurus

Navigating the world of affiliate marketing can often feel like searching for treasure without a map. I’ve had my fair share of adventures with courses from some of the big names out there, particularly Anthony Morrison and Marcus Campbell. Here’s a candid look at how these courses played out for me.

Anthony Morrison’s Training

Starting with Anthony Morrison, I was initially intrigued by his promises of easy success using tools like ClickFunnels. However, the reality hit hard and fast. His main training pushed heavily on utilizing ClickFunnels, which came with hefty monthly fees—something I couldn’t justify as I was just dipping my toes in the water. The course itself cost me a whopping $1,400, and despite diligently following the prescribed steps, I didn’t make a dime. This experience taught me a valuable lesson about considering all associated costs and the practicality of the tools recommended in any online course.

Marcus Campbell’s Training

On a more positive note, my journey with Marcus Campbell started with his free training videos, which were a goldmine of actionable advice. These videos were instrumental in helping me earn my first online commission—a small but significant victory that fueled my desire to dive deeper. Encouraged by this initial success, I decided to invest in his paid training. This decision paid off, as I made another affiliate commission, further proving the effectiveness of his methods. Marcus’s approach was straightforward and didn’t require expensive tools, making it ideal for someone like me at the time. Total cost $1250.00

Analysis of Course Offerings

When diving into courses offered by online gurus, it’s crucial to peel back the layers and examine not just the content they present, but also the overall value they deliver. Here’s my take on the courses from Anthony Morrison and Marcus Campbell, based on their content quality, engagement, applicability, and pricing.

Anthony Morrison

Anthony Morrison’s courses are well-packaged with a professional presentation style that catches the eye. However, the content heavily emphasizes the use of specific tools like ClickFunnels, which may not be practical for everyone, especially those just starting out due to the high costs involved. The courses are comprehensive but tend to lean towards promoting these tools, which adds significant extra costs on top of the $1,400 course fee. In terms of engagement, the courses are interactive but sometimes feel more like a sales pitch than an educational experience. This became particularly evident with the frequent upselling, which seemed geared towards locking students into further expensive tools and programs.

Marcus Campbell

Marcus Campbell’s training, particularly the free videos, stands out for their direct applicability and straightforward approach. The paid courses maintain this practical focus, emphasizing strategies that don’t necessarily require additional investment, making them more suitable for beginners or those cautious about spending. Priced starting at $297, his courses offer a good balance of comprehensiveness and value, providing actionable advice without insisting on further purchases. The lack of aggressive upselling makes his training more appealing and trustworthy to users who are often put off by constant sales pitches.

Pat Flynn

Pat Flynn is renowned for his approachable and transparent teaching style, focusing on ethical marketing practices. His courses, especially those related to building passive income streams, are highly comprehensive, covering a wide range of techniques from podcasting to affiliate marketing. Priced at around $297 for most courses, they provide substantial value with detailed, step-by-step guidance that caters to both novices and experienced marketers. Pat’s courses are engaging, filled with interactive elements like worksheets and forums. Importantly, upselling is minimal, reflecting his commitment to genuine teaching over profit-making.

John Chow

John Chow’s training courses primarily focus on monetizing blogs through affiliate marketing. His content is extensive and rich with insights drawn from years of blogging experience. However, the courses can be pricey, starting at $497, which might be a consideration for those on a tight budget. While the content is very comprehensive, some users might find the courses slightly overwhelming due to the sheer amount of information. John occasionally offers upsells but generally keeps them to a reasonable level, focusing more on delivering quality content than on additional sales.

Zac Johnson

Zac Johnson is a well-known figure in the affiliate marketing space, particularly for his expertise in blogging and personal branding. His courses are primarily focused on how to leverage a blog to earn affiliate income and build a brand. They start at around $47, which makes them quite accessible to beginners. The content is comprehensive and practical, especially for those looking to start or enhance their blogging journey. Zac provides actionable steps without heavy upselling, making his courses a good investment for those wanting straightforward, effective guidance.

Ian Fernando

Ian Fernando offers courses that dive deep into affiliate marketing strategies, with a strong emphasis on using advertising and innovative online strategies. His courses, typically priced around $97, are designed to be actionable and are filled with real-world applications. Ian’s teaching style is direct and hands-on, providing learners with not just theoretical knowledge but also practical skills in ad management and campaign optimization. The courses are reasonably priced considering the specialized knowledge and skills they impart, and Ian keeps upselling to a minimum, focusing more on content delivery and student success.

Note: While I’ve shared insights on several key figures in the affiliate marketing industry, such as Anthony Morrison, Marcus Campbell, Zac Johnson, and Ian Fernando, please note that this analysis does not cover all the gurus mentioned earlier.

My aim is to provide a snapshot of the varied experiences and offerings available, helping you navigate the complex landscape of online marketing courses. Each individual’s offering is unique, and I encourage you to explore further if you are interested in learning from any of the other experts not detailed here.

Community Feedback and Reviews

To get a well-rounded view of the affiliate marketing courses offered by gurus like Anthony Morrison, Marcus Campbell, Zac Johnson, and Ian Fernando, I delved into various sources of community feedback and online reviews. Here’s what I found:

Anthony Morrison

Positive Feedback: Some users appreciate the structured approach in Anthony’s courses, noting that the content is comprehensive and covers the basics of using tools like ClickFunnels effectively. They mention that the courses are well-designed and can be very informative for beginners.

Negative Feedback: On the flip side, many reviews pointed out the high cost of the courses as a major downside. There are numerous reports of dissatisfaction due to the additional expenses required to utilize the course material, such as mandatory subscriptions fully and upsells. Several reviewers felt that the value did not justify the price.

Marcus Campbell

Positive Feedback: Marcus’s courses, especially his free training videos, receive a lot of praise for their accessibility and practicality. Users report that these resources are straightforward and very actionable, making them excellent for those who are new to affiliate marketing.

Negative Feedback: Criticisms are few but some users expressed a desire for more advanced content. A few mentioned that while the entry-level courses are great for beginners, they lack depth for more experienced marketers looking for advanced strategies.

Zac Johnson

Positive Feedback: Reviewers often highlight Zac’s ability to explain complex concepts in an easy-to-understand way. Many appreciate the focus on blogging as a tool for affiliate marketing, noting that his courses offer valuable insights into content creation and monetization.

Negative Feedback: Some negative comments refer to the need for more regular updates to the course content to keep pace with the fast-changing digital marketing landscape. Others wished for more interactive elements, such as live sessions or Q&A opportunities.

Ian Fernando

Positive Feedback: Ian’s hands-on approach and his focus on advertising strategies are highly regarded. Users value his direct style and the practical knowledge he imparts, especially about running effective ad campaigns.

Negative Feedback: Critiques mostly revolve around the initial steep learning curve of his courses. Some beginners found the advanced strategies to be overwhelming without sufficient foundational knowledge.

Are They Truly Helpful or Just Profit-Driven?

When evaluating whether these online gurus are truly in it to educate others or primarily driven by profits, it’s essential to consider their engagement with the community, the transparency of their results, and the nature of their follow-up support.

Anthony Morrison seems to lean heavily towards marketing his courses with a strong focus on upselling. While his courses do provide some educational content, the frequent emphasis on additional purchases can detract from the learning experience and appears to be profit-driven.

Marcus Campbell, on the other hand, presents a more balanced approach. His initial free training provides real value, and his paid courses build on this foundation without constant upselling. Marcus’s engagement with his audience through practical advice and follow-up support indicates a genuine interest in his students’ success.

Zac Johnson and Ian Fernando both offer valuable content, though their approaches differ. Zac focuses more on the educational aspect with less emphasis on sales, whereas Ian provides deep dives into specific strategies, which can be highly beneficial but also somewhat overwhelming for beginners.


Throughout my journey into the world of affiliate marketing, I’ve encountered a spectrum of mentors, from those whose primary goal seems to be profit to others who are genuinely interested in their students’ success. Marcus Campbell stands out as a notable example in this regard. His courses offer practical, actionable advice without excessive costs or upsells, making them particularly accessible and valuable.

To answer the central question: while some gurus do appear to be more focused on profit than on truly helping their students, there are certainly those like Marcus who provide substantial value and are committed to their audience’s success. I’m not an affiliate for Marcus; I simply appreciate the straightforward and effective nature of his teaching.

Advice to Readers

If you’re considering investing in any online course, especially in the realm of affiliate marketing, here are a few tips:

  • Research Thoroughly: Look beyond the sales pitch and examine the actual content of the course. Check independent reviews and gather feedback from past students.
  • Assess the Total Cost: Be wary of courses that require additional investments to implement the taught strategies.
  • Consider Your Needs: Match the course content with your current skills and goals. If you’re a beginner, look for courses that cover the basics and provide solid foundational knowledge without overwhelming you.

Navigating the world of online marketing gurus can be tricky, but with the right approach and careful consideration, you can find valuable resources that genuinely aim to help you succeed in your endeavors.

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