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Understanding Your Clients

Lesson 15 from: How to Make Money

Ramit Sethi

Understanding Your Clients

Lesson 15 from: How to Make Money

Ramit Sethi

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Lesson Info

15. Understanding Your Clients

Lesson Info

Understanding Your Clients

We talked about how to get so deeply in your client's head that you almost deeper than even they know themselves, right? So when a random mother in this midwest town that jackie lives in, I would see a flyer or or whatever about jackie's she'd be like, oh my god, that that's exactly what I want for my son or my daughter how does this person know that she must know me? And that is true marketing right notice I did not talk about twitter or facebook I talked about riel truly deep marketing I wantto take questions on what we discussed and they were going to go into even deeper ways of connecting with your clients. Sarah just question what happens if you have if you suspect, um that you sort of understand your target demographic but are unable to sort of directly target them. It's easy to call it a business owner and say let's meet for coffee under sort of this pretext it's a lot harder to, you know, knock on a nation american woman's door in the midwest and say like, I'm a violin teacher ...

because there's asians in the midwest I understand your challenge no, let me put it this way if you're the goal is to be serving asian mothers, then you better know some asian mothers or you better think about where do these mothers hangout church bingo! I don't know I'm not the expert on asian mothers but you better be if that's your client so they do hang out in certain places now it could be geographically it could be on blog's it could be they read a certain magazine or newsletter or they're all or if I were thinking they're at the p t a meetings and remember it's scary because all of a sudden people jumping to these conclusions like wait a minute roommate you're saying I should go up to these women at p t a meetings and then start interrogating them about their violent needs no you actually just chit chatting with them commonly and in my programs I have the actual scripts to use when you walk up to them you don't be weird and like, hey, I really like your clothes so do you need violin teacher? Don't be a freaking weirdo, but even introverts can master this it's not scary because the truth is you're genuinely curious like hey so like, you know, I noticed that there's a lot of other children here who are in violent really curious like have you thought about doing that for your son? I only ask because like I've done violent for a long time and you know, my parents didn't put me in it until I was eighteen I kind of wish I'd been in it when I was younger super normal genuine conversation I'm not mentioning that I want to sell my services because I don't right now I'm not ready so my answer to your question is if you plan to serve a certain type of client base, you better know where they hang out that's your job beyond just being good at your craft this is your job other questions instead yet drew so you mentioned before that you know it's not just about being good at your craft, it's about mastering the other things. I'm sure there are plenty of people out there who have a fear that, uh the reason why they're not expanding just beyond their craft to master these other things is they're not going to be able tto learn everything there is to master, you know, one piece or another piece do you recommend that people kind of get the basic understanding of everything and then build on top of that our master one and then go to another master because it can be overwhelming to look at all of these other things outside of just say, photography and you look at all of these other things you need to get the master, I'm sure can be pretty overwhelming to look at all of them would be like, wow, I have a lot on my plate here when I sold my four dollar, ninety five cent e book and I'm going to talk about a product business for a second although many of us are in service businesses and actually love talking to people with service businesses when I launched my four dollars ninety five cents a book I did not have like a fulfillment mechanism because I literally I had such low self esteem about selling my product that I didn't even think fifty people would buy it no kidding and so I was like literally planning when I accepted the money through paypal I was just going to email the pdf to people and then I sold like hundreds in one day and I was like oh my god so I then learned how to do fulfillment then I learned about customer research a year or two from it then I learned about copyrighting now I know about a b multi very attesting and cross cells and up cells and all kinds of stuff I didn't know that when I first started and there was no way for me to learn that until I did it like now with my business I have certain needs that I would have never had four years ago so I'm forced to learn those things my suggestion is to first we're gonna talk about cloud research tomorrow how to understand you know what are these things in general like maybe they actually care about their kid getting into harvard in this case we could dig into that really deeply or not, but at least we know that's one area they care about reliability there care about timeliness what they care about not being embarrassed so I want to teach you howto understand what these things in general are and then my suggestion is to kind of start off and as you get better you're going to go deeper into each of these and maybe even discover a lot more okay let's take one question from justin then we're gonna go the web I like your example of the because my wife's got hat company we're thinking of, you know, trying to monetize that more when you, uh did or did not selling a book to a customer did you ask them as well like why they did or did not buy that? No, I wasn't that sophisticate okay, would you still do that today on something as cheap is that if it's five yeah, the thing is you're going to get really weird responses we have to plan for that if you ask someone, why don't you buy a hat? What do think they're going to say if you're gonna be style money? Um I don't know, okay, so I think you should find out when when when the answer to a question I don't know then most of us are just like, well, I'm not going to do it the correct answer is right. Well, let me find out, right? So I think you should do it. You're going to find people saying stuff like that wasn't really my style and then you're gonna look in that closet there you have the worst taste and stuff, but at least you're gonna understand like, okay, why are these people saying it? And by the way, let me discover some patterns the people who bought are all men or they're all fathers or they're all summer that's why you start looking at people who bought versus didn't you want to find those matters? Ok, good question, let's go the web sure, super red has the question, how do you draw the line between added value added value to your clients and a client that takes advantage of you? We believe in giving hundred fifty to two hundred percent to our clients, but of running the problem where we feel we're being used and abused by a client killed saying given inch and they take a mile, you're not dealing with the right clients and you're not setting boundaries. People are crying out to have boundary set it's been since childhood since someone actually said to us, you know what? I'm happy to do this, but unfortunately not going to able to do that and my guess is you're a pushover and you're afraid of saying no because you're afraid of losing that client fact, I bet you if I brought you into studio within forty five seconds in the hot seat with me I could rip you up not a bad way but I could discover vulnerabilities where I would just take advantage of you you're probably saying words like yeah, I mean we could do that I mean yeah, whatever you need or okay yeah if you need just let us know I'm happy you know, whatever whatever it takes to keep you happy you're saying phrases like that like remember yesterday we talked about those pathological phrases that people say in negotiations like upturned phrases at the end my suggestion to you and we're going to cover this in detail later anybody here have that experience where clients take advantage of you okay, we're gonna bring you up on the hot seat and we'll explore that so I'll show you ways to kind of curtail that the truth is it's kind of like there's a lot of analogies to the dating world it's a lot of guys were really weird they'll obsess over like okay, so I went on a date with this girl and now like we're in front of her apartment so how do I make the move to kiss her like how do I make that move? The truth is that decision was made way back here way back here but people and in particular guys we believe that action in action out so I do something and I should get an immediate reaction the fact is with clients with women with men that decision was made way back here so when when you walked into your client and you said here the types of clients I work with I'm happy to do this however, if you'd like next day service that's going to be an additional charge that decision was made instead what you probably did way back here was you served every client on earth you competed on price you didn't set any boundaries and now your clients of course taking advantage it's actually your fault not theirs it's your fault we're going to talk about it fixed that let's take a couple more powerful uh simpson bud says room eat can you have several ideal clients? Yeah we're talking about targeted sure yeah you can but most people that's usually a cop out for not even picking one I'd like you to pick one crush it dominated no that client base better than anyone else and once you are once you have so much money you don't know what to do with and so many clients that are singing your praises on npr and the today show then you can decide to expand most people use this excuse like hey I have so many clients cause I'm so special that they never even narrow down what else will take two more carl fred zo is wondering how do you do this for a broader market like web design speaking specifically about like I think jackie's story that's not broad web design web design is broad but you need to be narrow for example um we're going to do idea tear downs in a minute so so ah web design is means nothing because what I want for web design is totally different than what a photographer wants for web design is totally different than what a random little blogger wants. Okay, um if you were to come to me what would you say? How what would your pitch bey as a web designer anybody dealing with um top performers high profile people but you're trying to butter me up business minded exactly very I know your language, okay no, it doesn't work let's start let's start a different level let's talk to about a photographer your web designer you're going to go make a pitch to a photographer? What are you going to pitch them? Somebody go here is a situation where I think you will want to be able to speak to sort of their technical needs like I have the ability to make your photos look great um I have the ability to I mean just like speaking to making the photos look good and amplifying the work for their target target audience it's I like I like the way you're speaking up it's very ballsy I mean this is scary stuff to have to pitch live I appreciate that cavon I'm really glad you went first because you just forced me into the mindset of being the photographer if you were if I were your potential client and I was waiting for you to say I'm going to design a site that everybody's gonna want to go to that is goingto have high traffic that people are gonna want to book you I was waiting for you to see that I was partly say that can you promise that can you promise high traffic can I as a web designer no story I was putting myself in the shoes of her potential client and I was waiting to hear you tell me that as a designer what I would do is I would pitch it as something like look um talk to me about your your web design needs like I see your sight my guess is that you put these photos up but it takes you a ton of time to maintain the website you've got an ftp in here it's just a mess my guess is also that you know the last guy who came around promised you all this stuff but you know people come to the site you're not even sure how to track check your analytics and you don't even sure like what's why am I spending all this time on this is it is it correct? Am I correctly assuming that most of your clients come through referrals and not from the site yes how did you know that and then well it's and is it also correct that you're spending you know, two hours a day updating your sight but if you actually look back at the last six months you haven't even gotten more than four five clients oh my god how do you know that one of the things that I do is I work specifically with photographers and there's a couple of things that are unique about photographers first of all your sight has to look beautiful that's just a given because people are coming to photography websites to look for the right vision so here's a few sights I've built you could just you can see that they're beautiful they're really highlight your craft in your work but the other thing you'll notice is that your websites not just a brochure you really want to turn it into clients and what most web designers will do is we'll just slap it up they won't make it easy to maintain so that they can charge you more later I take a pretty different approach my goal is to help you get more business with your website when someone comes to the site here's what they're going to see they're going to see, um, they're going to see your photos, they're going to want to learn a little bit about you, but more importantly, I want to help you show your photos into their world, so I'm going to do a couple of things number one, I'm going to show before and after photos, photos that other photographers took and then ones that you took same place and you can show the difference. The other thing is I'm going to set up a free consultation off, maybe a free book on eight things tto learn before you hire your wedding photographer, and then I'm going to add x y z feature that's going to help you get more clients. My goal is for this website to generate at least five phone calls to you per week based on your traffic. I'm also going to bundle in if you'd like. This is an optional service if you'd like, I'd be happy to bundle in ah weekly report on analytics so you can see how many people going and a third option. You probably don't need this, but if you're if you're curious and want to save time, we can actually upload every photo that you take directly to the site, so there's three tears, my recommendation would be for you to just start with the big anyone. But this is how I go about it and if you're curious you can talk to five of my reference clients they actually increased their their conversions they got six on averages six new clients a month done what do we learn there? Can anyone analyze what we just learned? I just made that up on the spot it was a little bit long alright if it were me critiquing me I'd be like stop rambling but what did we learn from what I just did go ahead level you're speaking to them in a language they could understand correct very good what else you focused on making their life easier yeah go ahead with the value proposition is huge you pinpointed where money was going into your services but also where your services were going to like pay for themselves in the other end it's right no notice now I'm glad that we talked to you before because you focused a lot on like making my photos look beautiful but the fact is as a photographer my photos are already beautiful. So what are you gonna do is like don't don't do my job for me get away do the job that I can't do and what is the number one thing of photographer wants the photographer watching this show what's the number one thing you want more clients and yet you didn't talk about that on your web design proposal interesting? What else did I do? I need a couple of other settle things. Really? You're great at, um, building civility and relationship. You're just very you're studying the ground work for how did I do that? So I did something at the end to build a relationship. What did I do? I found out that was my rambling that's. My fault not one thing I did was I said, look, there are three tiers by the way, people love options, right? And what did I tell them? What do I tell this prospect? Basic tier. You can always join later, but I would actually just started the beginning. I'm why did I do that? And how many people are always trying gouge their client for the lack of quickest buck they can make you want to tell people I'm like join my lowest price product if people ask me why I joined the what? And this is a thousand dollars difference, by the way, between one of my products, the two tears. I'm like, just started the beginning. One if you need to upgrade later you can. How do you think they feel when I tell them that, like totally and they can, because the truth is they don't need it, there are, like, maybe three percent of people who e mailed me asking and I tell him you know what you really should and if you don't like it, I'll refund your money so the other thing I did at the beginning this is probably the most important was established and probably this would have happened after interviewing them a little bit of stuff but I said, you know, correct me if I'm wrong but my guess is that pain point pain point pain point as opposed to what most people do let me just sell you on my shit I said, what did I say? You're uploading all this stuff it's super confusing does that sound does that resonate with any photographers in here? I felt like you wore my shoes almost better than I were my own you spoke for me and as you were speaking, I was like, oh yeah, I didn't even think of that I do want that I do need that do we debate meets a really good with yeah, I'm taking your web design clients starting tomorrow from its web design dot com okay, I love what you just said because that is the essence of I understand your client better than they understand themselves she hided that what I did was I said, you know, correct me if I'm wrong correct me if I'm wrong in other words, I'm almost putting myself in a lower level cause I'm not sure I'm just here trying to make my way but actually I know every single thing about what's about to transpire in this conversation because I've done extensive research correct me if I'm wrong but you know you you probably spent a lot of time you know, uploading stuff and how do I know this because I know that photographers not that technical that they don't want to sit around playing around technology they want to just get their photos and get a bunch of phone calls and go on take photos they want to do this they don't want to do all this stuff, which is what I do I solve your problems and the other thing I said was you know you probably have this analytic stuff you don't even know how many people are coming to the website does this sound familiar to anyone? Some weirdo web designer came along and promised you the world and you don't know how to deliver it okay? So that is how a pitch is done and that was just on the fly we're actually gonna go deeper but let's throw to the web and see what reactions people had this one who said you know what? I'm a web designer and uh we meet just sold me on what I should tell myself that yeah and uh lenin charlotte says the three f's of sales feel felt found here's what you feel I felt the same way. Here's what I found. Okay, got it. Okay, so what we what we covered there was, you know, this original question? That question that answered was ah, really lazy question the question was, how do you niche this stuff down for a mass market thing? Like a web design? And the truth is you're not mass market if you are you already lost. If you were to come to me and pitch that I would throw you out of the road because I don't need my photos to look beautiful. My photos look like crap. All right, I need my website, teo. Present my material. What do I need? My website did you know I want someone to pitch me using what I just taught you on how you would pitch me as a web designer. Now, let me just give you a couple of pieces of data. One people come to my side. It sounds like a big fat scam. That's a problem, too? I have I'm highly credible in the sense that I've been on today's show in new york times whatever three I have, ninety eight percent of my stuff is free, but if you join my newsletter that I will teach you to be rich dot com slash creative live you can get much more free stuff scripts, case studies, all that stuff as well as some of my premium courses, which is how I make my business revenue pitch me who wants to try and we'll go to the web as well take a crack at it it's okay, worst cases, I'm going to critique you and make you better who's got it? Okay, correct me if I'm wrong, but you get, um, hundreds of thousands of new, uh, of unique users on your website every month, and you're interested in acquiring, um their email addresses so that they can get on your newsletter distribution list. We keep lists of those things so you don't have to worry about them. We make it very easy. Uh it's a very easy user interface so you don't have to keep track of those names and email addresses we do it for you. Um, we have we can build a very clean site will make it professional because I know that you worry about people coming to your site with, uh, worrying that it's a scam, so we'll put your credentials across the bar at the bottom show what shows you've been highlighted on, we can have a professional portrait of you over to the side, so people know what you look like, you connect my photo for me um well, we can refer you to a very good portrait photographer yes and so then we would post that photograph and people would be able to connect with you personally and see that um you know you're a reputable person what about my social? I don't understand all this social media stuff so what like people tell me I should be on twitter? I don't know what do I do with that? Well, we can definitely put quick links on there for you and we can manage your social media we have people in our office why don't why don't why should I even do it? I don't even get why people are telling me that his twitter well that's a way to generate more traffic on your website if you're interested in getting your material out to a larger audience okay, so let's pause there let's give a round of applause that was very good, very good, very good so I love let me tell you what I love about that and I'll offer a couple of bits of constructive feedback. I love that you know you did know my pain points you're like you probably want to get people to sign up for your email you probably don't want toe have to worry about all that stuff and you want some credibility so you took what I told you in the preamble and you put it right back at me and you used plain english I really like that you didn't tell me about all this fancy technology I like that a lot a couple of things what did you notice? As you were saying it like in your head? What did you notice? Well, I was glad that you said what you're you're pinpoint because that helped a lot I don't know it was kind of grasping e let me give you peace if you die trying to understand you as I was well that's it that's actually what I want to talk about and everybody on the web let's get their critiques as well and let's just share the nice ones because people love to critique you didn't watch my face, so I intentionally started getting bored at a certain point and you just went on and on and that's that's not your fault we're not trained to do that in relationships we are think about it the last time you went out with your partner or your friend and they're just like you start rambling you khun you know you're like, all right, I need to shut up so you went on and on and what would have been better was think of yourself as almost like a radio interview eat you talk for a second saying, am I on the right track or does that make sense and let me speak, not you for me. I'm the important one on the client right now. I'm again. I'm just giving you feedback for the future. You did amazing job. The other thing is, keep in mind that I'm pretty technically savvy. So a guy like me, you want to customize it for me. You don't want to say stuff like I'll take that off your hands because I know you don't want to look at all those numbers actually want to look at the numbers extensively. So if you were coming to me again, you didn't there's no way for you to know this, but I'm just showing you different clients have different needs, you say, look, many other clients, they just wanted to take it, take this off their hands. I know you, you're like, very technically savvy. You do abie testing multi very testing, all kind of stuff, so I can actually send you a report every week. And then I haven't analyst in house who ran optimization for adobe and, oh, desk and this and that. And we can actually put you together and show you how to run these split tests to actually improve conversion rates by sixty eight percent that's, what we did for our last client boom that's speaks to me so there's, no way for you to have known that, but everyone understand that different clients have different levels of sophistication. You always want to speak to their level because otherwise it's kind of like insulting. I'm like like that might work for some junior web guy, but I know all this stuff I need mohr does that make sense? You've suggested that she, you know, offer that you you know, if you don't want to, if you don't want to deal with these numbers, we can always handle them ourselves. But if if you're interested, we could send you a report. Yeah, that's what she should have done, but but even better would have been toe already know this before you come in and pitch and the way you do that is asking without selling you want to spend so much time up front with me asking about my problems and stuff like that? Then it becomes clear, frankly, let me put it this way. If I'm more sophisticated than you, you probably shouldn't be pitching it doesn't, right? That makes sense. I think we can all agree on that, so it would be better for you to say, you know, it's, probably not the best fit I'm happy if you're if you're looking for this but I think some of the things you're looking for I'm probably not equipped to handle and so again if you're looking for this area like did you notice I give you a couple of like hints I was like, oh, you can take my photo and by the way everyone watching this like my photo of me sucks it's really bad people are like you look really back in your phone like I know like I've actually gone into meetings where people like wow did you lose weight and I'm like what like that's actually quite insulting, right? Actually I s o but people like you need to fix your photo for me it's such a low prioritization but I figure if I'm in front of twenty thousand photographers maybe I can get a good head shot for once in my life so anyway anyway when I gave you that little hint like hey, you take photos to you should you basically didn't say the right thing you're like actually yeah, we work with someone who's terrific and we could certainly set you up with that that's no problem solving my problems okay? Anything from the way we'll take a couple then we'll move on we did have someone as chancellor who's saying remit is hard to pitch to because you know your conversion figures already so the ideal web designer would pitch to help making your website easier to come very good very, very smart point there's a certain level where you just you don't really pitch him unless like I said, if the person is way more sophisticated than you it's probably not the right thing for you to be doing yeah way to reapply re approach those clients if you've closed the door on them once a ce faras like when can I come back to you and say, well, now you know I am equipped to handle it so here's what I would do it's such a great question I'd like to stay in touch with people who either turned me down or I turned them down I love tto add value to them I'm a teach you how to do that tomorrow I have a couple of techniques in fact scripts right on my site I think where you could get him on, you can get the scripts from joining this course as well so you could get some of those here some of them there. What you could do is say this so let's say you came to me and I was like, listen, you're not you're not at the level that I need and then you end up getting really good and a year from now or something you're like hey meet hope everything's going well I noticed you did a great job on your website when you were on creative live you put up this this page and you have all these resources and I'm a big fan. I wanted to let you know that since we talked, I actually ended up working with four clients on conversion optimization and here's here's a couple of insights I learned number one when we use the caricature instead of a photo were actually actually able to increase conversion forty six percent. The other thing we learned is blah, blah, blah. I'm happy to share more if you'd like to discuss. I looked at your website yesterday and I actually saw four areas where I think we could dramatically improve converted do you think I'm gonna take that phone call? Hell yes, all about me all about me and you're adding value to my life in that email by you actually giving me secrets. That is how notice my client is at the center of everything I do. I'm giving them so much value even in free emails that they're like, I got up like I gotta pay this guy, right? Anybody, anybody have any questions on that? Okay, that's, how you re engage with a client it's? Not about hey, I'm desperate for money and I'm going on vacation, so can you give me some money no it's like always about putting them first

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Ramit Sethi Interview
3 Negotiation Scripts
5 Negotiation Case Studies
Freelance Email Proposals
Freelance Income Roadmap
List of Freelancing Ideas
5 Resumes That Win
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This course changed my life. After watching Ramit on Creative Live, I bought his book, then signed up for his newsletter, then bought several of his classes. You could say I am officially drinking the Ramit Kool-aid now, but I'll tell you why... His stuff works. You have to trust the system, but I've been able to create a rich life for myself by my definition of rich and I am so happy. It takes work, but I am so grateful I found Ramit in my 20s so I can truly enjoy my 30s over the next decade. Without this course, I would still be complaining that people don't want to hire me because my prices are too high and whining that I am not valued, when in reality, the problem was me. Thanks Ramit for always speaking the hard truths and giving people wake-up calls to get their act together and live the life they want... It's possible!

Adrian Farr

Ramit is a huge inspiration, he is not just a 'been there and made loads of money' kind of guy, he is a 'been there and made loads of money, and here's how I did it' kind of guy! Ramit really gets down to helping you understand not only how to make money but also how to save it too. I am looking forward to reading his book and plan to implement a lot of his systems into my own life.


I have taken a few business classes for creatives online, but this is by far the most comprehensive, most practical course of all. Especially for someone like me who loves Ramit's work but has not made a decision to commit to his full courses, this is a great introduction for what he can offer. He pushes you to think outside the box and see all the possibilities that we can have in a very clear, logical way. If you are unsure which class to take to learn about business, this is all you need.

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