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Examples from the field: How to stand out

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In the last 12 months, I’ve turned down around $200,000 of business from people I didn’t feel were right for my programs.

I’ve also doubled the guarantee period of my Earn1k program for no good reason. I just thought it was the right thing to do.

And I’ve made some decisions about the upcoming launch of Earn1k 2.0.

Each of these moves are unusual — but they’re extremely unusual for people in the information product world (e.g., ebooks, online courses, etc), who typically try to make as much money as quickly as they can.

We’ve been talking about hustling this month — or working extraordinarily hard to get disproportionate results. That means if you work on the right things, you can make 2x, 4x, or even 100x as much as average people.

And it’s not just money. You can hit your goals faster, worry less, and accomplish more by working harder, and working on the right things.

Today, some behind-the-scenes examples from the field (my business) — and a twisted challenge for you at the end of the post. I love it!

Follow along and see you how you can use these same techniques for your own goals.

*     *     *

Turning down $200,000 in 12 months

I give away most of my material free — 99% of it. To generate revenue, I sell information products as well as a New York Times best-selling book. Occasionally, I charge to speak at companies or conferences.

Now, I could make a pretty respectable living by doing nothing and letting my business run itself automatically. But I find it intellectually challenging to run this business as a laboratory, constantly tweaking, testing, and tinkering to see what results I can get. As I’ve always said, testing is critical.

But I exist in an extremely odd market: information products, which is largely a weird combination of circus freaks, scammers, and a very few highly credible people selling top-quality products.

How do I distinguish myself from all the nutcases?

How can you stand out from the other 50,000 people trying to do what you’re doing? Let’s take some examples.

Results matter more than anything. I never call myself an expert. Only you can do that — once my material gets you concrete results.

I focus obsessively on getting my readers results…and I track everything.

For example, here’s an email I got THIS MORNING from an Earn1k student, Pam M.:

“Anyway, just from the first lesson of “get inside your customer’s head” I was able to get a freelance writing assignment that gets me an extra $300-$500 per month.”

Here’s another one from IWT reader Martin, who recently left this insightful comment:

“I think anyone who’s been paying attention (and listened to the webcast with BJ Fogg) knows exactly what you’re doing:

Baby steps.

How much more likely are any of us to sign up for Earn1k 2.0 now? Only a few months ago I wouldn’t have, and now I’m seriously considering it. By digesting your free material, we’re all taking baby steps towards paying for your material.

You’re applying the exact techniques you’re teaching all of us. Baller…This has all been incredibly useful information for me.”

Precisely. Once you use my free material to see that you can actually get a meeting with a VIP, negotiate your rent or cellphone or cable, set up automatic transfers in 3 days, create a plan to pay off debt, or even earn $500/month…you know it’s real.

How this applies to you: Anyone can talk a big game about what they’re going to do. DO IT FIRST — FREE — and watch your business skyrocket. When someone emails me promising me the world for PPC, or SEO, or whatever, I just laugh. I get 50 of those emails/week. Do it first, send over a completed result, and we’ll talk. And remember, this is true of virtually every hiring manager. You can make yourself irresistible by doing the work first. And track everything.

Make ridiculously over-the-top offers.

A 30-day free course on hustling.

Earn1k, which costs more than virtually any other product in the market, but gets you more results than anything else you could get for free — or pay for.

Scrooge Strategy, perhaps the only information product on saving money that costs nearly $50/month — and saves you more than 2x (usually 10x) that amount each month.

How do I charge so much for my material — and get thousands of customers who are delighted to pay — when most people give away free material and mop up the leftover ad revenue?

People pay attention when your material is the best, you know it, and you offer crazy proof of how good it is.

Let me give you an example.

I recently doubled the guarantee period of Earn1k for no good reason. You see, virtually every person in the information-product business offers generous guarantees and has to live up to their product’s hype…or they go out of business. This is an extremely competitive area.

That means previously, you could take half my 8-week Earn1k course and ask for a full refund. After doubling the guarantee period, it means you can take the full course and ask for a refund if you don’t love it.  I even eat the credit-card processing costs.

Why?

Because in a world of scammy info-products, I want to go ridiculously over-the-top to show you how valuable my material is.

That’s why I give away 99% of my free material — which I believe is better than most paid products.

That’s why I give money-back guarantees for my products. (And by the way, I carefully tracked certain metrics once I doubled the guarantee period. Don’t just make crazy offers. Track everything.)

That’s why instead of launching product after product, I do a few key products each year, spending heavily to build the best — and then charging accordingly for results.

How this applies to you: Be careful about doing what everyone else is doing. Do you think running a blog for ad revenue will be highly profitable? Probably not. Do you think you should target EVERYONE for your freelance business? No. Do you think you should be sending out 100 resumes to get your next job? If you’re sending out 100 resumes, you’re doing it wrong.

Quality is extraordinarily rare


@ramit Hustlin harder than any other blogger. Amazing quality multiple times a week, how much caffeine do you consume?less than a minute ago via web

In this world of people making a quick buck, quality is rare.

I study customer service obsessively. I read biographies and histories of companies like Leica, The Four Seasons, and Apple.

I’m obsessed with quality. And every day, I have to make the decision of long-term quality or short-term revenue.

For example, I could actually make a lot more money launching 20 products per year. Or doing shady affiliate deals. Or trading my email subscribers’ to less scrupulous people. The amount of money being left on the table? Millions.

But I want your success. Because once my students see that my material works, they stick with me forever. It’s funny — this happens a lot. People pick up my book, think it’s a scam, and try the first chapter (negotiation scripts). Once they do that, they’re IWT students forever.

Because there’s nothing like results.

And that’s how you get disproportionate rewards.

Another example: I send out weekly emails to Earn1k students who’ve already paid and graduated. I get nothing out of it. I don’t charge anything for it. But if it takes me 1-2 hours per week and my students stay happy — if these show them I’m in it for the long term — then that further distinguishes me as someone who cares about THEM, not someone who’s just in it to make a quick buck.

That’s why I don’t accept Earn1k students who have credit card debt. They need to fix their debt first, not invest in more courses. That cost me over $100k last year. But it’s the right thing to do.

That’s why I recently shut down a highly profitable program because it wasn’t providing disproportionate results to my students. Here’s the actual email I sent that cost me $75,000.

That’s why I turned down $100k of revenue in my first Earn1k launch just so we could maintain an extraordinary level of personalized quality for my top-tier students.

All of this sounds expensive. But I actually think it’s expensive to focus on short-term results.

When my students — or even free readers — see how day after day, I focus on giving you the best material out there, you start to say, “Hey, this guy is actually giving me pretty good stuff.”

And our relationship becomes far less like some dude trying to sell you on his expensive products. It becomes about being your advisor, someone who cares about the results you get — whether in your career, or personal finances, or even health and fitness.

How many people do you know who focus obsessively on your results? Who track and respond to thousands of emails every week without charging a cent?

Notice how frequently I keep mentioning results. That’s because when people lob skepticism at you, you can argue back…or you can simply point to insane results on it. How can anyone argue with that?

“My rate increased by 55% and I paid off $7k CC debit last year.” – Angelo

“Used some of the techniques to negotiate a $6k higher salary at the new job I started. Freelancing has suffered as a result, but the new job is worth it.” – Steve G

“I fired the custumers that were not the right ones and just kept the right ones. This made me go from R$ 50/hr to R$ 70/hr.” – João G

“Turned freelancing into a 50% higher base salary.” – Eva

“I almost doubled my rate from $35/hr to $50/hr. I would not have had the confidence to do that, if it wasn’t for E1K.” – Kaushlesh B

“I went from $0 per month to $2600 per month.” – Owen O

“I got my first completely new paying client (no friend, or friend of a friend) within 4 weeks of the course and made $1700 with that deal.”- Christina

“Increased my salary by 20k and made 1k a month on the side.” – Uy T

That kind of obsession lets me deeply understand exactly what the problems are when I go write my next blog post…or create my next product. It’s also what also allows me to run a business where I can create the  best products on the market — and make disproportionate revenues from them — because I use all this research to craft the perfect product for you.

(I’m now working on several new products…some to launch in months, some as far out as a year from now.)

How this applies to you: TRACK RESULTS LIKE A MAD MAN. The next time you apply for a job, use my Briefcase Technique to whip out a 10-page, single-spaced document of results you’ve gotten. What are they going to say? “Oh my dear god. How much do you want to make? Name a price. I’ll pay you anything.” That’s when you spit your watermelon seed onto their desk, put your fedora hat on, and as you’re walking through their office door, look back and — calmly — say, “I’ll take $150k. $500/month in monthly training, no questions asked. And I want a frappuccino on my desk every morning.”

YOU CAN’T LOSE.

Look, it’s easy to be average. It’s the default position. But when you can invest in others — when you can get them SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE results before asking for anything — you will get disproportionate returns easily. Think about this with your co-workers. Think about this with your partner. Invest in others before expecting something back. But when you get something back…it will blow you away.

Separate the winners from the losers.

Last year, during the first Earn1k launch, I made 80% of my revenues from a small list of a few thousand.

This year, I’ve decided to only launch Earn1k to the people on my Earn1k Insider list. Earn1k will not be launched through this blog. It will only be available if you’re on the list.

That’s because I’m constantly looking for ways to speak more to the people who have already taken action, instead of trying to convince people to take action in the first place.

This month, during the course on hustling, every post has had an easy opt-in form. I’ve offered incentives, bonuses, free interviews, and all kinds of exclusive material to join (free). For those who have taken the trivial action of entering their name and email, they’ll get a week of free material on hustling, psychology, and earning more after this Friday. Those who didn’t, won’t.

(If earning money on the side isn’t for you, that’s no problem. I hope to have other material that’s better for you. But my motto is — if you trust someone, why not try it out?)

“But Ramit,” you might say, “why don’t you just give away the free material and launch Earn1k publicly? Not everyone wants to sign up for your stupid list.”

Good question, hypothetical question-asker. I do this because when I invest in you by giving away free material and exclusive interviews, I expect people to invest in themselves — by taking action — and to invest in me. I don’t ask much, but joining a free list is the bare minimum I ask for giving away even more information. If you don’t want to buy one of my courses, that’s cool. But I don’t just give away free material for nothing. I expect my readers to take action.

How this applies to you: Don’t try to serve everyone. Have you ever had the experience of trying to convince a lame friend to go out night after night? There’s ALWAYS an excuse. Instead, spend your time on friends who already want to go out…and making new friends. Same for business: Focus on people who already get it — or have the potential to get it — instead of everyone.

This week’s challenge:

This week, I put together a twisted challenge for you.

You know how I keep saying, “Skepticism is not a strategy?” That’s because so many people are skeptical in this world. “There’s no way that can work!” “I could find all that stuff for free.” “That sounds scammy.”

It’s funny — at the beginning of this month, there were a few skeptical comments from people. Most of them have faded away. It’s hard to stay skeptical when everyone else is passing you by getting results.

So here’s the challenge: Help 1 friend save $500 using IWT material by this Wednesday.

It sounds simple, but you are about to experience the FASCINATING psychological phenomenon of skepticism. Get ready for people to say things like:

  • “This book sounds scammy”
  • “There’s no way that could work”
  • “Yeah yeah…I’ll do it later”

Why this challenge? First, because when you teach something, you get better at it yourself. Second, because we’ve been largely internally focused this month. But third, and most importantly, when you see how skeptical other people are, it will shock you — and make you question yourself. Are you that skeptical about other things?

There’s no better way to do that than trying to show your FRIENDS how to do something and  watching them be extraordinarily skeptical/disbelieving. For example, I LOVE mixergy.com, Andrew Warner’s site where he interviews entrepreneurs in extreme detail. But when I’ve recommended it, THREE people were skeptical. “What’s the catch?” one asked. “Yeah, I should really watch that…” another said. This site, which has literally changed the way I think about my business.

This exercise is very revealing because it will show you how skeptical many of you are about things. Even when you patiently explain that no, you did this yourself and it ACTUALLY WORKED, many people will not believe you.  But it will be your job to find a way to get friends to save $500 in the next 48 hours using my material.

You’ll be applying your best persuasion learning’s from the interview with Stanford psychologist and persuasion expert, BJ Fogg and all the other material I’ve put together.

And in exchange, I’ll award a terrific prize to the best result.

To do this week:

Leave your results of the challenge in the comments section of this post with the heading “WEEK 4 RESULTS” by Wednesday at 11:59pm PST.

Note: Be respectful when you talk to your friends about this. Remember how hard it was for you to take action during this course?  Nobody wants a know-it-all.

The person who gets the best results from their friends this week can choose between…

1)  Airfare for the SXSW conference on March 11-20 in Austin TX  from wherever you are in the continental United States. You’ll also get 3 tickets to Andrew Warner (of Mixergy fame)’s sold-out SXSW party with awesome people. That’s 1 for you, and 2 for anyone you want to take (to provide value FIRST).

-or-

2) A 30-minute conference call with me and 3 of your friends to talk about whatever topics interest you the most, like the psychology of persuasion, negotiation, time management, etc.

Note: This week, since the awards are so large, you must be a member of my private Earn1k Insider list to be eligible.

What’s coming the rest of the week

This is the final week of my free 30-day course on hustling. This week, we’re covering the difference between the best and the rest.

  • Monday: The top 2 things that separate the winners and the those left behind
  • Tuesday: Earn1K case studies on Hustling –> Getting people to pay YOU to hustle.
  • Wednesday: Special webcast with Tim Ferriss (details to come tomorrow)
  • Thursday: Winner of “Take Action” award for this week + details on the bonus 5th week on earning more
  • Friday: The 30-day course ends… and the private bonus week on getting paid to hustle begins

Enter your info below to sign up to be eligible for this week’s prize and get access to all the bonus material I’ve released during this 30-day course – which is available to you in the private insiders’ area of earn1k.com.


(Can’t see the above form? Click here to sign up.)

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[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Ramit Sethi, Bud Hennekes, Nico Schweinzer, Belinda Fuchs, Chris Anastasio and others. Chris Anastasio said: RT @ramit: Ok guys, just wrote a monster post revealing lots of behind-the-scenes details about my biz: http://bit.ly/fgTYYN […]

Erin
Erin
5 years 5 months ago
I paid for Earn1K last year, and admittedly didn’t finish the program (yet). However, it did (and is) helping me to achieve other goals in my life however. Even though I’m not making $1K on the side right now I don’t feel like I got ripped off, for a few reasons: 1. Its my own fault-I didn’t take action. 2. While I’m not using it as intended, the material is helping me achieve results in other areas of my life that are important to me right now (volunteering, graduate school, helping my brother with his start-up. 3.Because Ramit stays engaged… Read more »
hilary
hilary
5 years 5 months ago

The SXSW prize is awesome! Too bad I’m way too busy with clients to even think about this (snaps to Earn1K for helping me get into this predicament).

I like this challenge a lot. I’ve been using the earn1k free material to try and convert some friends into self-employed happy people rather than corporate slaves and it is very very very very very very very hard to get them to even try a few hours on the side, despite the fact that they complain endlessly about wanting to work on their own. sigh.

David
5 years 5 months ago
You’re great man! I am starting to get really specific and get results. The first “days” are pretty tough, but I persevere. I have used your Earn1K techniques and email scripts to get in touch with photos agents: I have spent hours making these emails not just OK, but GREAT!!! Plus, I have NOT included any visuals/photos I have done, neither my website address, which is strange for a photographer, but I wanted it this way to see their reactions. Gues what? I got 5 answers back on 7 emails sent (some email back, some call), which is a HIGH… Read more »
Michelle
5 years 5 months ago

Well done David! I like the idea of sending great emails without visuals and still getting a great response – seems counter-intuitive, but you can show results!

emily
5 years 5 months ago

Ramit, another brilliant post. Now, do I wait for another 18 months until all my credit card debt; or do Earn 1K now and make more money? (I know this has been discussed before; I’m just questioning myself again because the quality of the information is so incredible.)

Amber
5 years 5 months ago

Go for the course. I was in the same predictament. The money I’ve made from the Earn 1K course has more than paid for itself and paid a fair chunk of my debt to boot. It’s definately worth the money as long as you hustle on the work involved.

Casey Friday
5 years 5 months ago

“My rate increased by 55% and I paid off $7k CC debit last year.” – Angelo

I’m guessing “debit” is a misspelling of “debt” – my question is, did you just recently make the decision to turn people down with credit card debt, and you used to let more people in? I only ask because it was one of your main talking points.

PS – The challenge smells like Jean-Pol Martin. 🙂 I like it.

Kirsten
Kirsten
5 years 5 months ago

This is too funny… just this morning, I forwarded one of your emails to a friend for the very first time! Oh, and I’m also carrying a cheque in my wallet, but I know that was just a metaphor.

I think I’d rather help a friend EARN $500 instead of SAVE $500, but I’ll try both.

Henry Martz
5 years 5 months ago

Great material as always. Undergoing interviews now and the jaw dropped look you get with the briefcase strategy brings a smile to my face every time.

Thanks Ramit.

Zoelle
Zoelle
5 years 5 months ago
Not sure if this counts for the challenge, but why not: saved my boss ~$8000 (assuming his son takes 4 years to finish college.) His son received a better financial aid offer by 2k/yr at a school he didn’t want to attend, but they hadn’t tried to negotiate with the college because he is in running for a separate 2k scholarship for that school that would make the offers equal. I suggested they contact the office of the top choice school with the higher offer without mentioning the additional scholarship on the side. He emailed the other offer over during… Read more »
James
5 years 5 months ago
I actually started sharing some of your stuff with friends last week before I heard you’re offering the SXSW prize, but thanks for the extra incentive! I got a lot out of the BJ Fogg interview, and felt that my close friends could benefit from it too. I sent them a series of emails (not unlike yours) that tied those concepts to things I have in common with them, like our church’s messages on wisely using one’s time / money, and our mutual friend who went from chain smoker to He-Man lookalike in about 6 months. Some of them have… Read more »
James
5 years 5 months ago

I agree, it’s goals that are important because content by itself doesn’t get you anywhere. In my case, I challenged my friends to share their goals and use some of the methods in the BJ Fogg interview to increase their chances of success (specifically the baby steps, changing your environment, accountability and envisioning the outcome). Some of them are financial and others are getting in shape, breaking a bad habit, etc.

I just sent the “I WANT YOU AND I TO SAVE $500 IN THE NEXT 48 hours” email. Woot!

K00kyKelly
5 years 5 months ago
Ok, I know this is not about money buuuuut it is about getting friends to do things and ridiculous responses. I was totally shocked…. my friends actually complained to me that I wasn’t convincing enough to get them to try it earlier. I used this service called BillMonk all through college to keep track of who owes what when we’d go out to eat, with my roomies for groceries, and borrowing stuff like books. I told my friends at other schools about how amazing it is and got that ya whatever skeptical response. ~ a few years pass ~ We… Read more »
Juan
Juan
5 years 5 months ago
Hola: In the company I work by now, I’m badly underpaid (too long history), less than 200.00 month, but with enough time to begin working on the side, began working 3 months ago, as an electronics engineering consultant (up to 800.00 month and going for more), friday I convinced a friend to work on the side for the same company (selling their products) to earn more, and today night, he will be negotiating prices. The process with my friend began by january 6-7, he has worse problems than me, but one of the points I told him to be working… Read more »
Sam V
Sam V
5 years 5 months ago
Ramit – I’ve gotten such great results from your book and your blog that my friends have started coming to me for advice. The editor of this Boston blog is also a good friend of mine and asked me to do a post on how I manage my finances http://www.onein3boston.com/ And FYI, whenever I explain to other people what I do, I sound like an asshole because (nearly) every sentence starts with, “Well, I read on IWT that…” or “Well, Ramit says you should…” 1. JUST LAST WEEK I sent friend the budget I use based on your book. It… Read more »
D
D
5 years 5 months ago

OMG, I can totally relate. I also use so much <> that even my mum asks me on a regular basis about what Ramit is up to. So much fun.

Michelle
5 years 5 months ago

*frappaccino*?!? Now, seriously…. how can you be taken seriously with a frappaccino? Guess it depends on which part of the world you are in!

And getting us to share techniques to determine what we know and how skeptical we are – just brilliant! I think I will try in on my husband…

Michelle
5 years 5 months ago

“Ramit says…” seems to be a recurring theme. I am guilty of it myself 😉

Sarah
5 years 5 months ago
Nice application of a study you shared with us earlier. How to get housewives to buy more of a certain product (I forget what it is…let’s say brussel sprouts). Instead of just educating the housewives on the nutritional benefit of brussel sprouts which only resulted in about 3% of them adding brussel sprouts to their families’ diets, the researches gave them the task of trying to persuade other housewives to buy more brussel sprouts. In the end, the percentage of the housewives that were involved in actively trying to persuade others to buy more brussel sprouts skyrocketed to something like… Read more »
K00kyKelly
5 years 5 months ago

This is the secret of why Jehovah’s Witness, Mormons, and other religious groups do door to door recruiting.

Randy
Randy
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS (Note: Like a good Indian son, I assisted my parents rather than a friend) I read the IWTYTBR book from cover to cover and did nearly everything assigned (some tips and instructions didn’t apply to my situation). In the “Conscious Spending” chapter where you track your expenditure, I realized I was spending too much on my fixed costs (bills). I need to lower the percentage. I remembered you had scripts on your site, so I used them to lower my auto insurance, cell phone, and internet. These were big wins that saved me over a thousand a… Read more »
Dave Doolin
Dave Doolin
5 years 5 months ago

Randy, I *very* strongly suspect that both your parents are boring, nearly to tears, each and every one of their friends with detailed, lengthy and almost certainly tedious tales of their brilliant son’s financial genius.

Just a hunch…

Ryan
Ryan
5 years 5 months ago
Ramit recently I have seen you make a real effort with lot of great material in your emails. Do you have a donation box somewhere?…you should have one even if you don’t have the need so some of us who are quite grateful can feel like they have contributed to maintaining this cool blog and emails That interview & webcast was really impactful. That simple line Baby steps and Success builds Success made a light bulb go off in my head. This is truly the key. I have since started studying 10 pages a day out of a book that… Read more »
David
5 years 5 months ago

Dear Ramit,
if you come to Paris soon, you’d better email me. I’ll show you – with great pleasure – one or two restaurants with amazing food, where only insider parisians go!!!
And if you’re not satisfied, I am offering you a 30 days refund (!), no questions asked.
😉
Take care
David from Paris

Agota
Agota
5 years 5 months ago

I really respect your integrity, Ramit.

Thumbs up for not taking people with the credit card debt to Earn1K and encouraging them to sort out their finances first.

karen
karen
5 years 5 months ago
I have given 2 young co-workers copies of your book, talked with them and highlighted the sections about putting money in their 403b accounts, how much they can save if they just do it for 10 years, the tax advantages, and the employee match. One signed up himself and had his young wife (who works for the same company) to put 6% of each of their salary into the 403b, and with the employee match, and the tax advantages, they will each easily be ahead $500 this month. I have been trying to get them to do this for over… Read more »
Nate
Nate
5 years 5 months ago
I’d been raving about your stuff to my mom and she had been intimidated by the more extreme things like using Mint (hey’ she’s old, give her some slack!), so I took another approach and offered to help her cut costs on some of the smaller things she’d been complaining about, like her too-high cable bills. I pulled out my copy of your book, had her read the negotiation scripts, and then she called the cable and phone companies. Guess what?! We managed to shave about $150 off her monthly bills! $1800/yr ain’t bad. With that win under her belt,… Read more »
Rebecca Geiger
5 years 5 months ago

WOW! that is GREAT! And inspiring.

Matt
5 years 5 months ago

Well, I have credit card debt, so I guess I’m out. But I’ve been paying it off through a debt consolidation program since last Jan, and use the one card I have left sparingly if at all – I have to, it only has a $500 limit – but some day soon I’ll be free of it!

Chris
5 years 5 months ago
I don’t really have a way that I saved a friend $500, but I did want to take this opportunity to thank you for the inspiration you gave me to move on from my mundane job at a small corporation. After reading one of your earlier posts about testing responses, I decided to take action! I wrote my resignation letter the night of January 18th, and turned it in on January 19th. My boss was in total shock! I explained to him that I was tired of the corporate BS and ready to do something different. The next day, my… Read more »
Blake
Blake
5 years 5 months ago

I basically used something like the briefcase technique to get a job. I was working for a company as a full time programmer, but wanted to go back to sysadmin work. They didn’t want to pay for a sysadmin, but asked me to take my final two weeks and make some recommendations on my way out…

Within two weeks, several of my predictions had come true and they called me in to work for them as a sysadmin.

Kevin Zittle
5 years 5 months ago
Hehe, its so funny that this is the challenge this week. I just literally emailed Ramit about 8 hours ago, not at all knowing what this weeks challenge is. I said: I just wanted to share a big success story with you! I was talking to my friend about a week ago and she was telling me how she had so much credit card debt that she wanted to get rid of before getting married. She had about $6,000 in debt on just one card! I told her about your book. I encouraged her to call her credit card company… Read more »
Sal Jumat
5 years 5 months ago

This week’s challenge seem possible and practical. Nice one Ramit!

Dave
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS: Convinced one of my friends to order your book. I did this by continuously talking about you (along with Tim Ferriss) when money or productivity was brought up. In essence, this was an “indirect sell;” my friend told me one day that he should order your book because he always saw and heard me speaking about you in positive terms. I never pitched the book to him, but I let him figure out it filled a need on his own. Although small, he now is planning to get a credit card to build up credit. With a… Read more »
Arkadiy B
Arkadiy B
5 years 5 months ago
I just got my 1099 (I am an IT consultant for a large US bank) and unemployment 1099 (I was laid off first 5 months of 2010) yesterday and decided to quickly run my taxes to see if I have saved enough for the tax bill using your finance automation scripts. To my surprise (I knew I was putting away more than needed, just wasn’t sure by how much), I saved more than $10000 more than what would be my tax bill for the year! Using your finance automation ideas I was able to pay down some debt (about 10k… Read more »
Steve B
Steve B
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS For months, I’ve heard about problems that my friends and acquaintances have been having with money and the most popular quote among my group is,”I can’t, I’m broke.” I’m sure I’m not the only one with a circle like that. In response to your action step, I actually completed this task before it was a challenge. A close friend of mine has incurred ten’s of thousands in loan debt and has had to put their dreams on hold because the debts have not been paid. The icing on the cake was that they ignored several debt payments… Read more »
Kate Ressman
5 years 5 months ago
Week 4 Results Convinced my friend to practice for her interview tomorrow. She’s been looking for a job for three months now. I’ve shared with her your posts on negotiation. Today she wrote up a script and talking points for the interview. I’ve also gotten her to take action on well, cleaning her space. She’s noticed how much I’ve been getting done using the time management techniques I picked up from Earn 1K. She’s applying those techniques to cleaning her room with the goal of being able to paint it and create a work-space there to get her out of… Read more »
Al
5 years 5 months ago

Nice stuff. The green fish looks polluted though lol

Kimberly M.
5 years 5 months ago
My story is similar to a comment above. I have a friend who has been searching for a job for over year (!). I recently video-conferenced with her to ask about her interviewing technique and try to pin point where my ultra-amazing and hardworking friend (former coworker) was going wrong. Last week, I offered to help her role play a big interview today with a company she’s long admired. She agreed! So yesterday, I went through both tough and easy interview questions with her until she got the hang of answering confidently. We watched the “briefcase technique” video together and… Read more »
Stephanie Taylor Christensen
5 years 5 months ago
Ramit. I love what you’re saying and couldn’t agree more. At the end of the day, it comes down to weighing opportunity and immediate payoff. never take your eye off that ROI; it’s not always monetary, Particularly for those of us who are hungry to build wealth, it can be a constant challenge. I left a pretty decent paying marketing gig earlier in the year to stay at home with my son and strike out on my own doing what I love (writing and teaching yoga). It was hard in the beginning to make very little, and the temptation to… Read more »
Audrey
Audrey
5 years 5 months ago

This week, I managed to get my mom to open an ING account for savings. She promptly deposited $2500! (Mom likes to shop, so if she hadn’t moved this money, she likely would have spent it, stat.) And I also set her up for recurring deposits of $20 a week. That’s well over $10K a year!

Maurizio
5 years 5 months ago
Week 4 result Yesterday I invited a friend of mine to dinner and we had a looong talk, he left at about 1 am saying: “I should have known this was a trap, at least it was a good trap”. Giulio has a stable job but he never has enough money, he can’t get a hold of was he spend on. After we finished eating I started THE TALK. It was something like this: “Big G we need to talk…. I know it will be a really hard thing to do, but you are one of my best friend and… Read more »
Martin
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS I helped my friend reform his credit cards, and this is what we got, rounded to the nearest dollar: He currently is paying $270 to his cards per month. I’m assuming this will remain constant. He uses Mint, so this is the known-average since he landed his current job, about 8 months ago (recent college graduate). I used this calculator to estimate minimum payments http://www.bankrate.com/calculators/managing-debt/minimum-payment-calculator.aspx And this one to figure out the payment scheme (ignore the fact that it’s not labeled in USD since the math doesn’t change) http://www.whatsthecost.com/snowball.aspx Before, his accounts were: Discover, Balance: $1,643, APR:… Read more »
Eric
Eric
5 years 5 months ago
This won’t count for the prize, since my friend and I won’t meet up until Friday, but I KNOW she will be saving at least $500 after we are done optimizing and automating. This girl is the classic case in your book, Ramit. She earns a decent paycheck and knows she needs to be doing SOMETHING with her money, just not exactly what. From our preliminary talks, I know that she has some small medical debts and a tiny bit of credit card debt that will get paid off immediately. I am also going to set her up on mint.com… Read more »
Kyle P
Kyle P
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS Hi Ramit, That’s a great challenge. And you’re right…it is great to see your friends put this stuff into practice. I can only imagine what you’re feeling when you see so many people succeeding and taking your advice. In order for full disclosure, these points must be noted before I begin… – I began this process with a friend of mine about 2-3 weeks ago – It actually utilizes more of Charlie Hoehn’s ‘Recession-Proof’ Grad material, but I did get that through your site and e-mail list. He also used your negotiation techniques. – I’m not sure… Read more »
Kirsten
Kirsten
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS I don’t think either of these is going to qualify for the prize, but I’m so tickled by them I chuckle every time I think of it. I targeted two people. 1. A friend of mine who lives nearby. She’s pretty frugal, so I thought saving her $500 would be tough, and I dropped that goal. HOWEVER, it turns out she has been thinking about freelancing for a while, and we now have a tentative plan on how we’re going to move forward together. 2. My husband totally misunderstood the challenge, and he saved me a lot… Read more »
Jaime Barriga
Jaime Barriga
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS One of the hardest parts about this for me was deciding who to send this email to. I could have just blanket emailed 40 friends but I decided I would target the friends that would be most receptive to some financial tutelage. I picked the 9 friends I recently took a 3-day snowboarding/skiing vacation with. We all make a good amount, and I know a few of them are already better than average with handling money (having a semi-automated system, negotiating with the credit card company, actually having a savings account and 401(k)). I framed the email… Read more »
Kevin Zittle
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS Sorry, forgot to put the heading: Hehe, its so funny that this is the challenge this week. I just literally emailed Ramit about 8 hours ago, not at all knowing what this weeks challenge is. I said: I just wanted to share a big success story with you! I was talking to my friend about a week ago and she was telling me how she had so much credit card debt that she wanted to get rid of before getting married. She had about $6,000 in debt on just one card! I told her about your book.… Read more »
david
david
5 years 5 months ago

i sent my buddy from high school a text about picking up your book for investing and saving advice. he just got a huge chunk of change on an insurance settlement and he’s looking for ways to make his money grow. he later sent me a text saying the name ramit setih was money. he’s also my one friend i talk about long term financial goals with so it’s cool that now we’ll both use concepts from your book to bounce ideas off of each other.

Roberto
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS Wow! I am amazed at the results I see here! All the more because I crashed and burned on this one at first. I was able to show a friend how he could save $50 on his cell phone bill, but he declined to do it! He said he didn’t want to get tied down to a 2-year contract! On the other hand, I believe I’m helping my employer make thousands of dollars he would have otherwise lost. I don’t handle accounts: I’m a creative director, so I write and create visual designs. However, we recently lost… Read more »
Jack
Jack
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS Ramit, I got serious results. The original goal was to help one friend save $500 by teaching them some of your techniques. I figured why stop at 1 friend? I want to get really disproportionate results! I started out by quickly picking three friends who I thought would all benefit from learning this stuff. I double check with some mutual friends about their financial situations just to make sure I was on track. Like you mentioned, people are already skeptical when it comes to this and me doing a little bit of research to make sure I… Read more »
zachary wertz
zachary wertz
5 years 5 months ago
Week 4 Results: Well this is the week I have failed to get some results, but looking at the comments and I realize that there is really a way to help my friends. Yet the hardest part would be getting them to take action. I asked one friend (poor targeting and action, I’m guilty) I said “want to save 500 dollars?” He said “Life goes on I got things to spend, pay bills and so on” “it’s impossible”. I had to laugh because I knew that was the exact response that was coming. It was not “umm that sounds great,… Read more »
Hans
Hans
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS This occurred about two weeks ago, but I still wanted to share the results with you. While in New York I was discussing negotiating raises with a friend and shared a few of your techniques, specifically on emphasizing value with direct proof and tying it to meeting/exceeding the goals of her boss and company. My friend is already a top performer, but with the help of your advice and a little nudge from me she was able to confidently walk in and negotiate a 15% raise two days later. A few hours of work on her part… Read more »
Annie
Annie
5 years 5 months ago
WEEK 4 RESULTS When I read about this challenge, I instantly had that excited and scared feeling that Derek Sivers mentioned in the webcast. So I immediately texted the one friend that I’ve been meaning to talk to about personal finance for over 10 months! We met on Monday night and I walked through all the different possibilities of automating his finances so he could have a better system than what he has now. I even gave him my only copy of IWTYTBR but I knew how important this was so I let it go. Some great insights that I… Read more »
Maxime
5 years 5 months ago

WEEK 4 RESULTS

I just failed.
I came home super motivated but I just didn’t take action.
No excuses, all my fault.

Sorry Ramit

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Ashley
Ashley
5 years 5 months ago

Hey so, how much caffeine DO you consume each day?

Brooke P
Brooke P
5 years 5 months ago
I decided to start an internet-based, screen-printed t-shirt company. I started the site, ordered 8 varieties of test shirts and a small screen printing kit. My idea was to submit a design a week, market the hell out of it, then only order/make shirts as they were ordered so I could see what designs sold. At that time I would create a stock of 5-10 shirts in S, M and L, thus slowly building inventory that I would unleash on the boutique and summer streetfair markets. …So far the screen printing kit remains unopened. Turns out I don’t really want… Read more »
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