One of the greatest testimonies to your success is when others try to do what you do, especially when they have no background in your particular area. As imitation is the greatest form of flattery, I realize it doesn’t always feel that way.
If there is one thing that I have found is a constant in dealing with other blacks in business it’s the way we consistently hoard information and look at each other as the enemy. The jealousy and contempt that we have for each other, backstabbing and protecting clients with our lives as if their budgets are only meant for us is unfortunate. To that end, I understand why it happens but things are not always as they seem.
In 21 years of doing my magazine and site Radio Facts, I am always aware of who is stabbing me in the back and using me for information, yet I often still give it (perhaps to a fault) because I don’t care. I do not want what others have because I’ve been too blessed doing business for myself but I see a lot of black folks trying to find their way in business by any means they deem necessary and others making sure they don’t succeed. This is very unfortunate.
Clients have no problem telling me how vicious “competitors” can be by calling them and asking questions like why are they advertising with me instead of them and copying my banner ads and sending it to my clients and asking “What is this shit?” when they don’t get it. In the end, the client ALWAYS tells me and they tell me they will not support the competitor because they treat them like they OWE a part of their budget to them. It used to piss me off but it doesn’t anymore. These people don’t need any help from me to destroy their own reputations. All I know is that doing something like this has never been and will never be a part of my business practice. Some competitors are so vile that they have even copied stories verbatim (copy and pasted from my site and put the it on theirs, including my cropped images) and they try to sell the client that I am copying stories from THEM (but they fail to realized there is a date stamp on all the stories).