A few weeks ago at IZEAFest Aaron Brazell spoke briefly about the concept of entitlement as it relates to influencers. Aaron’s point was simple, you aren’t entitled to anything and should be thankful for everything. I agree with Aaron 100%

entitlementIn my role at IZEA I work with beginning bloggers to celebrities and everything in between. I have to say that I have noticed a disturbing trend over the past few years across the entire social media spectrum. As the demand for bloggers and tweeters has increased so has the size of their heads. I am sad to say that many of the people I network with have become downright ungrateful. The inflation of entitlement far outpaces the true value of the people who display these behaviors.

Don’t confuse entitlement with value. You should always negotiate the best deal possible for yourself and I would never suggest otherwise. However, the manner in which you negotiate your terms and interact with your business associates makes a huge difference. I don’t care who you are… nobody owes you anything. Not a business opportunity, a free ticket, a free meal, a free drink or even a kind word. Everything somebody does for you is done because they want to.

I don’t do business with people because of who they are, I do business with people because of what they are. While your stature may initially open the door it is your actions that keep the relationship progressing forward.

Ted’s Guide to Avoid Becoming a Donkey

  • Be thankful
  • Participate
  • Smile
  • Recognize when you mess up, apologize when appropriate
  • Don’t be afraid to be humble

One of my favorite bloggers is Drew from BenSpark.com. He has worked his way up the blogging ranks over the past few years but has always remained grounded. At BlogWorld Ben brought me an ice cream cone. He saw that I was trapped in my booth and I hadn’t had anything to eat. First of all I want to say THANK YOU AGAIN. Second I want to say holy crap, how nice was that of you? I am not entitled to that sort of treatment and I truly appreciate it.

Even though Drew has become a big blogger he still does and says the things that he has always done. He is just a good all around guy, someone I met through business and now consider a friend. The door remains open for Drew because he doesn’t believe he is entitled. He gives back more than he gets and I would do anything for the guy.

Don’t be a Donkey

If you have made a name for yourself congratulations! I am happy for you and I hope it brings much prosperity. Just remember what got you there and that it could all be gone tomorrow.

Ted Murphy

Ted Murphy

Ted Murphy is an American entrepreneur. He is currently the Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer of IZEA, a technology company that provides software for influencer marketing.


  • Gator Bates says:

    If there was a “Like” button, I’d click it.

    I agree with your description of Drew. He’s an awesome, grounded guy.

  • Ted Murphy says:

    @Gator Bates:
    Drew is an all American bad ass. Happy that we met each other.

  • Amen brother. This is not just about blogging. This is what I try to tell my kids about how they need to live life. Great post from a guy who gives!

  • triaa says:

    Bravo! Name recognition means you have a bigger responsibility to be a decent person. Set a good example. It only takes a second to be brought down. Once you’re down, it takes a LONG time to get back up (if you make it at all.) Thanks Ted, for the good sense!

  • I love this post.

    And THANK YOU, Ted, for everything you’ve done for me and countless others.

  • Rob says:

    Great post Ted. I agree 100%. I am still pretty new to blogging and never feel I am owed anything. I am working hard to make a name for myself. Not sure it will work but I am trying. LOL. People with big heads who thing people owe them something is uncool.

  • BenSpark says:

    Thank you. I and my family consider you a friend as well. You have always treated me like a friend even from early on. I agree with the points of this post 100%, those regarding me aside. I just like to blog man. Love sharing my photos with people and meeting new friends. Everything else is gravy.

  • MommaDJane says:

    I couldn’t have said it better myself. Drew is an amazing blogger and friend. You meet the guy for the first time and feel like you’ve known him forever. I had a great time at IzeaFest and missed you at BlogWorld but got to see Ashley manning the booth.

  • Hallelujah! And thanks for recommending another blogger.

  • Alsparky says:

    Awesome points, Ted! And although I may be a little biased, I agree with you that Drew is an incredibly grounded, thoughtful, hardworking person – even if I don’t always tell him that.
    Thanks to you, Ted, for everything you have done for him and for our family.

  • Scott Harris says:

    Very well said. The act of giving is an incredible feeling that can really lift the spirit. Thanks for this post, you’re really projecting positive energy here.

  • Awesome post, I have been blogging, and earning a full time living from it for several years now and I have to pinch myself every morning to remind myself that I am not dreaming.

    Simply put, I consider myself very lucky. Not everyone is able to do what they love on their own terms and still make enough money to support their family.

  • Well said Ted. This goes well beyond just bloggers, but anybody in life. Nobody deserves anything for free, or entitled to something because you’re rich and famous. Great thing to teach kids growing up as well.

  • Brandon Eley says:

    Well said, Ted. I’ve met countless “A-List” bloggers at conferences and events over the last couple of years and have noticed this “trend” as well.

    But I think it’s worth noting that I’ve also noticed a lot of humbled and selfless people (whether A-List or not). When I think back, those are the people I remember for sure. And those will be the people I recommend, talk (or tweet) about, etc.

    The people who are “entitled” and arrogant leave a bad taste in your mouth, and you remember that next time you see them.

  • Well, THIS explains a lot.

    It has always surprised me that you seem to know me…or is it recognize? support? simply acknowledge my existence? I’m reaching for an accurate characterization of my perception of you…:) I mean, you’re TED-gene-simmons-impersonator-MURPHY, an original Blog {coughcough} Celebrity, and yet you’ve passed along my name on at least one occasion I’m aware. You’ve actually responded to my tweets…which is something I can’t say for everyone with a following like yours :/.

    I’ve been blogging four years; I am NOT a supah stah, but I’ve had some amazing opportunities as a result of this crazy world of social media.

    The sense of entitlement is something I’ve seen explode over the past 18 months; it’s bizarre, surreal. Outside the social media bubble, NO ONE gives a rip about “bloglebrities”; yet, within this sphere, I’ve observed a self righteousness and sense of entitlement that at the end of the day….makes me not want any part of it.

    I realize many people have gained a sense of significance not found in life outside The Matrix {my term of (dis)affection for the internet}; people who’ve become “experts” in the field {not always true, but perception IS reality}; and I’ve watch some people divide their followers into the “haves” and “have nots”, assigning value based on smoke and mirrors.


    Anyway, thanks for your words here and for pointing out the obvious. Sometimes we all need to be reminded, regardless of where we are on this ever-winding road.


  • […] I was blown away by a post from Ted Murphy. In it he talks about the sense of Entitlement that pervades many bloggers. I completely agree with what Ted is saying on that topic. But what […]

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