“Do you know what’s better than building an agency?” asks James Dhillon in a new YouTube ad. “Having one built for you. Give me 49 seconds and I’ll show you how.” (The ad lasts a little over three minutes. So there’s lie number one.)
Then he shows some screenshots from current clients who are apparently making big money thanks to James’ done-for-you service. (Their last names are blacked out so it would be tough, if not impossible, to contact them. Also, one of ’em even says “James asked me to post this in the group.” Not necessarily a lie, but kinda suspect.)
James is the CEO and founder of Automaters, which is “a business development agency that specializes in building businesses for people like you,” he explains.
“And in less than five months, two of our own businesses cracked seven figures using the exact same methods that we now use to build businesses for our clients,” he adds. (Where is the proof? How much did James Dhillon actually profit? These things matter.)
“We even got the verified badge on Facebook, so you know it’s real.” (Yes and no. It tells us Facebook has confirmed that you are who you say you are. That you post unique content. That you’ve completely filled out your bio. That people are searching for you—and of course they are because you’re running lots of ads. But that’s about it. It doesn’t mean that your automated agency thingy is worth a damn. I’ll call this a half-truth.)
“Our stuff flat-out works. Maybe that’s why we got featured in Entrepreneur Magazine, Forbes, Yahoo Finance, International Business Times, and so many more.” (Bro. You paid for those mentions and you know it. You need to disclose that. There’s a big difference between Forbes reaching out to you and you paying thousands for a stupid quote on some article buried deep in the archives of Forbes.com that nobody would’ve ever seen had you not given them the name of the article to look up. This is so sketchy.)
“Now, to run a successful agency, you need a proven process with SOPs [standard operating procedures, that is], which we have because we’ve actually built many businesses and sold millions of dollars of our own products and services.” (I love how all these gurus casually claim they’ve made millions and millions of dollars in “other businesses” that they never name or show any actual proof of. My guess? The only real money James Dhillon and team have ever made is through selling other people the dream via this Automaters offer.)
“You also need a dream team to do the fulfillment. Check! We supply you with the team.” (Let’s address the elephant in the room: if y’all are so good at building and scaling marketing agencies, why, on earth, why take your foot off the gas? Why stop working on your agency and put all that effort into someone else’s? Duh: because clearly there’s more money in selling someone a business-in-a-box than there is in being in that business.)
“And you need complete transparency into everything your business does. Now, we’re here for you, as you’ll have access to 100% of everything that we do.” (James, what’s an average done-for-you client making? And after how long? What percentage of your members have even made a return on their investment with you? THAT would be complete transparency. Giving ’em access to a funnel that you probably clone for every person you sign up doesn’t mean squat. Especially if it’s not producing results.)
His YouTube ad ends with the usual: he asks you to click and cough up your email for a free case study, at which point it gets even more hype-y.
I’m guessing Automaters pricing starts at about $10,000, but you’d have to book a call to know for sure. These are just my opinions, but I don’t trust this dude one bit.
I mean, yeah. He’s probably got a handful of happy clients. But they’re likely the exception, not the rule. The real winner here is James Dhillon’s net worth. Hopefully he doesn’t blow all of his money on lifestyle marketing, ’cause I could see this offer imploding in the not-too-distant future.