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How To Write An Email Asking For Something (& actually get it)

How do you ask an elite level performer/VIP for help with something in a way that will actually get a positive response?

Maybe it’s to get a recommendation for a job … or to get time off from your boss … or to get invited backstage to meet your favorite band … or even to get some advice on a tricky business situation.

The answer is surprisingly easy:

Shift your focus from a “me” perspective to a “you” perspective.

For example, years ago, I was hanging out with Charlie Hoehn, who’s worked with me and a lot of thought leaders like Tim Ferriss.

He told me how working behind the scenes has taught him about how to work with these kinds of people.

Here’s the secret:

“Everyone wants something from you guys,” he said. “Now I know how to stand out. Just don’t ask for anything! Actually, add some value first.”

This “you first” approach is how I’ve been able to get the advice of best-selling authors, superstar CEOs, and all kinds of fascinating people.

Let’s take a look a look at that in action.

Table of Contents:

NOTE: I have 5 amazing scripts you can use to set up an informational interview, cold email a stranger for advice, and more. Make sure you get your free download of my 5 best word-for-word email scripts.

How to write a polite email asking for something

Here’s a request email I received from a reader a while back. I called him within 60 seconds of reading it. See if you can find out why:

Request Email Ramit Got That Worked

The reader was polite, considerate of my needs, and sold me on the benefits of working with him.

Let’s break down the anatomy of this email, though, so I can show you exactly why it works.

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Step 1: Focus on the recipient

Example of how you can be lavish with your compliments

Remember: Your message to the important person should be focused on THEM. That’s the key to any polite email that hooks the reader in.

The reader above did this with a snappy and eye-catching subject line: I want to work for you for free.

YES. You have my attention.

He goes on lavishing me with compliments while sharing an example of how my advice has helped him.

What do you notice about that? It’s a genuine compliment. He’s not giving me superficial niceties like, “Your blog is cool” or “Awesome videos!”

He says he has multiple ING Direct accounts, a Roth IRA, and an automated finance system set up because of me. THAT’S how you write a polite email.

Use the first one to two sentences to compliment the person you’re emailing and their work. Tell them how long you’ve been following them, what their advice has done for you, and/or your favorite post by them.

This will hook them into reading the rest of your email.

If you’re finding this helpful, don’t miss out on my 5 best word-for-word email scripts. They’re totally free.

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Step 2: Sell your benefits

Let’s face it, you’re trying to sell yourself here.

What benefits can you offer them? Why should they care?

Sometimes this comes in the form of a warm contact (more on this later).

If you know of a mutual connection, you should name drop so the person you’re talking to knows how you know them. They’ll be much more willing to work with you if you both know the same person.

For this email, my reader knew that I was looking for talented developers — so he sold me on that.

Entice Your VIP With the Skills You Have To Offer Example

Guess what? That immediately set him apart from 99.999% of the crowd.

You’re going to have to do your homework if you want to leverage this technique. You need to know your VIP’s pain points and how YOU can solve them.

Go deep. Get inside of their heads. See what solutions you can offer to their biggest problems.

Be like Don Corleone.

Don Corleone Saying I'll make him an offer he can't refuse gif

Notice that they’re ramping up their YouTube presence and you’re a video expert? Tell them that and do it for them.

Can you take their social media game to the next level? Sell them on all the followers and traffic you can generate for them.

If you can’t come up with a specific solution, show the person you’re emailing you have XYZ skill that’ll have ABC benefit for them.

If you’re finding this helpful, don’t miss out on my 5 best word-for-word email scripts. They’re totally free.

NOTE: If having a work from home job is part of your Rich Life, I’ll show you how you can convince your boss to let you work from home in my article Working From Home: The Essential Beginner’s Guide.

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Step 3: Make saying “no” impossible

Your last step is to anticipate any objections or concerns they might have.

My reader knew I had a few projects I wanted to get to but hadn’t made time for them yet.

How you can make saying no impossible example

And while I could tell he really wanted paid work, he tells me that he’d “be happy just for the opportunity to network and receive a little advice.”

This made me saying no to him impossible!

He respected the power dynamic. After all, he reached out to me asking for my time.

And he showed this by being proactive, offering up his phone number, and also providing samples of his work from his website.

Also, acknowledge how many emails they get by ending your email with this script:

“I understand you have tremendous demands on your time, and if you don’t have time to respond, no problem. But if you do, even a sentence would mean a lot to me.”

This gives VIPs an easy out if they’re too busy. Counterintuitively, it also boosts your response rate since you’re showing empathy toward their time demands.

Remember, this email from the developer worked so well, I called him within 60 seconds of receiving his message.

Follow these steps, and you can see the same results.

I then encourage you to use the Closing the Loop Technique to follow up with your VIP two weeks after you get your response. You can use the following script:

“Hey, you told me ABC. I dug in. I discovered you were right, and so I took your advice and I just wanted to thank you. I’ll keep you updated a couple of months from now about how the new XYZ is going.”

Bonus: Want more ways to build healthy habits? Check out my new Ultimate Guide to Habits.

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ACTION STEP: Contact your VIP

  1. Brainstorm ONE busy VIP you’d love to contact, then shoot them an email.
  2. In the comments below, share your story and the response you got.

Get what you want

I’ve just given you the three steps to asking for a favor and getting what you want. This strategy works for anything.

And if you want specific scripts for emails that get results too, I have five you can use to:

  1. Set up an informational interview
  2. Ask for recommendations for people to talk to
  3. Cold email a stranger for advice
  4. Pitch for a consulting gig or a job interview
  5. Reach out to others in your company to get to know them

Just enter your information below, and I’ll send you these five word-for-word scripts for free.

How To Write An Email Asking For Something (& actually get it) is a post from: I Will Teach You To Be Rich.

A list of personal-finance events, conferences, and retreats

Last week, my colleague Patrick from Cash Money Life pinged me on Facebook. “Hey, J.D. What are some of the other personal-finance conferences out there?” he asked. Patrick and I brainstormed a list of money events, and I realized that this might be useful for GRS readers.

(Well, this list might be useful eventually. Right now, during COVID, this list isn’t useful to anyone haha.)

Here’s a quick list of the various personal-finance events, conferences, and retreats that I’m aware of. If you know of others that should be on this list, please drop me a line. I’m happy to add them.

General Personal-Finance Events

At the moment, I’m aware of three general personal-finance events. The first (Fincon) is heavily skewed toward content creators and influencers, but there’s usually plenty of material for the average person.

  • Fincon Expo is the oldest and largest personal-finance conference. Philip Taylor started Fincon as a way for money bloggers to come together each year to share ideas. During the past decade, it’s grown substantially. I think roughly 3000 people attended in 2019. Each year, there’s more stuff for a general audience. Targeted at the financial media (especially “influencers”), but open to everyone. Founded 2011. (I have attended Fincon every year, and probably always will.)
  • Plutus Voices is a series of one-night workshops held around the U.S. While specifically created for folks involved with financial literacy, Plutus Voices is useful to anyone interested in money. Open to everyone. Founded 2018. (I was scheduled to host a Portland event in April but…well, COVID.)
  • EconoMe is a new conference designed to “explore a new American Dream”. Put together by Diania Merriam, EconoMe has roots in the financial independence movement, but also aims to increase financial literacy. It wants to reach both ends of the spectrum. Open to everyone. Founded 2020. (I am helping Diania recruit speakers and sponsors for the 2021 edition.)

In 2016 and 2017, Ramit Sethi from I Will Teach You to Be Rich produced his Forefront event, which was tangentially related to personal finance. I attended the first Forefront in NYC in 2016, and I thought it was great. If it returns (which it probably won’t), it’s worth checking out.

Also, Chris Guillebeau started World Domination Summit in 2011. While WDS is not a personal-finance event, it frequently features speakers and workshops related to personal finance. This conference is coming to an end, but past talks can be found online. (I was on the WDS planning team for the first few years, and have both presented from the main stage and held workshops.)

Money Events Targeting Women and People of Color

While general-purpose money conferences are great, there’s a real need to address the concerns of certain specific communities. Maybe these audiences feel excluded at general events. Maybe they have specialized needs or concerns. There’s a growing number of conferences and retreats targeting specific populations.

  • My friend Melanie Lockert runs Lola Retreat, a smaller event intended to help women learn and share how to “go after whatever their heart desires”. I’ve heard good things from previous attendees. (In the past, GRS has sponsored a Lola “scholarship”.) Women only. Targeted at people who want to build better financial futures. Founded 2017.
  • Statement Event is for women in the financial industry: “Our mission is get all the change-makers in one room so we can amplify the conversation around women and money.” Organized by Stefanie O’Connell and Emma Pattee, and filled with an all-start line-up of presenters. Women only. Targeted at financial influencers and service providers. Founded 2018 (I think).
  • Cents Positive is “a retreat for women to talk about money and financial independence”. Billed as a “safe space just for us” so that women can discuss money without feeling unwelcome. Women only. Explicitly not focused on influencers, but on individual financial journeys. Founded 2018.
  • Elevate Influencer bills itself as “the premier event for personal finance professionals and influencers who speak directly to individuals of color”. Started by Sandy Smith of Yes, I Am Cheap. Anyone can attend. Focused on helping content creators to address under-served communities. Founded 2019, although the community has been around much longer.

I’ve talked with several people who have attended these targeted money retreats, and all of the reviews have been positive. People especially seem to like the Lola Retreat and Elevate.

Events Targeting the FIRE Crowd

As most of you know, FIRE (financial independence and early retirement) has been the hot topic in the world of money for the past five years or so. While that heat seems to be subsiding, some of the best personal-finance events were created for folks interested in the subject.

  • The annual F.I. Chautauqua is the brain child of the sagacious J.L. Collins. It’s a week-long gathering in a luxury European resort for what Mr. Money Mustache once called “crazy rich-people talk”. This is the premier event for those serious about financial independence and early retirement. It’s targeted at folks who already have high net worths, although that’s not a requirement to attend. Open to everyone. Founded 2013. Moved to Europe in 2017. (I’ve attended J.L.’s chautauqua twice.)
  • There’s a second, splinter Ecuador Chautauqua run by Cheryl Reed of Above the Clouds Retreats. (I’m unclear as to why J.L. and Cheryl parted ways — and I don’t need to know.) This event tends to be less money-focused than its European cousin, delving into wellness and happiness. Targets folks who want to build a richer life, whatever that might mean to them. Open to everyone. Founded 2013. (I’ve attended Cheryl’s chautauqua twice. I think she should rename the event to prevent confusion.)
  • Camp Mustache is a weekend retreat for folks who subscribe to the ideology of Mr. Money Mustache. This is not organized or run by Mr. Money Mustache himself, although he does attend. Very egalitarian event, which I like. Tickets sell out in seconds. Open to everyone. Targeted at folks interested in financial independence. Founded 2014. (I’ve been once. I was going to attend this year, but…well, COVID.)
  • Camp FI started life as Camp Mustache Southeast but has since become its own thing. Unlike any of the other events listed here, there are multiple weekend Camp FI retreats around the country each year. Targeted at anyone curious about financial independence and early retirement. Open to everyone. Founded 2017. (I’ve attended six times.)

I should point out that the Financial Freedom Summit was scheduled to hold its inaugural event in May, but…well, COVID. Its future is unclear at this point. Intended to introduce general audiences to the concepts of financial independence and early retirement. (I had planned to attend.) Founded 2021?

I should also note that I’m aware of at least two other events that are in the top-secret planning stages. At least one of them ought to be big and aimed at a general audience. As I can share more, I’ll add new money conferences and retreats to this list.

Postscript: The amazing Emma Pattee had a direct hand in creating several of these events. (Emma is one of the most remarkable people I know — and she’s very tolerant of the fact that my dog is a jerk to her dog.) She played a direct role in founding Camp Mustache, Camp FI, Lola Retreat, and Statement. Emma tends to stay out of the limelight, but she’s had a profound positive impact on the personal-finance community. She deserves a medal.

How Much Term Life Insurance Do You Need?

The post How Much Term Life Insurance Do You Need? appeared first on The Simple Dollar.

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What is Your Old Tech Worth? Whistle Pays 30% More — In 24 Hours

We bet you paid a lot of money for a phone that’s been sitting in a drawer (or basket or bin or closet or…you get the point) for the last few years.

And at the rate technology is changing, there might be a few phones, tablets or pairs of headphones gathering dust in there. Do you know how much money you’re wasting by letting your old tech get older? You won’t use them again — might as well sell them!

A website called Whistle makes selling all of those items super easy. No printer, mailing supplies or sketchy Craigslist meetups required. Plus, you could get paid 30% more than with other options — and get your money within 24 hours.

See How Much Your Device is Worth in 30 Seconds or Less

You’ve probably always assumed you’d get peanuts for selling your smartphones and gadgets — not even worth all the hassle. Well, Whistle has found a way to make this process as easy as possible.

So, are you ready to part ways with your old tech and make some money? Here’s what you need to do:

When you go to Whistle’s website, choose the device you want to sell and answer a few questions about it. You’ll then get a guaranteed offer. That means as long as you’ve answered the questions honestly, they’ll pay you exactly that amount — no questions asked.

This won’t take you more than 30 seconds.

A 64GB iPhone XS in good condition could fetch $290. An Amazon Kindle Paperwhite with 32GB could sell for $60. In general, Whistle says it pays out 30% more than other websites. Plus, Whistle stays in touch with you every step of the process.

If the price is right, enter your email and choose how you want to get paid — via PayPal, direct deposit, check or gift card.

Whistle will then send you everything you need to ship your device to them — no printer or packaging required. Once USPS drops your device at Whistle’s doorstep (bonus: it’s fully insured while in transit), you’ll see your payment within 24 hours.

That’s faster than any other website.

Hundreds of people are selling their old tech to Whistle every single day and making money fast. No gimmicks, no hassles, no baits-and-switches. See how much you could get for your old tech now.

Kari Faber is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She still hasn’t gotten around to selling her early 2000s Nokia phone.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

Don't Skip Dollar General on a Saturday. Here's Why

There are certain things you should never do.

You should never call your ex after midnight. You should never go to the beach without sunscreen. You should never wire money to a “prince.” You should never hit “send” when you’re angry.

Also: You should never drive by Dollar General on a Saturday without stopping.

(Um, you do shop at Dollar General, right? Because if you don’t, you’re missing out on some serious savings. The 16,000-store chain isn’t just a dollar store. It actually stocks tons of name-brand household goods, priced cheaper than anywhere else.)

So why Saturday? Because that’s the day you can take advantage of the store’s $5 off $25 deal.

Here’s How to Knock $5 Off Your $25 Purchase (on Anything!)

Five bucks off of already low prices? That’s right.

Here’s how it works: Just download the Dollar General App and sign up for a DG Digital Coupons account.

Once you’re in the app, you can claim an extra $5 off $25 coupon that you can use on Saturdays. It renews each week. You can literally buy anything you want. As long as you add the coupon to your account every week, spend $25 on Saturday, and enter your phone number at checkout, you’ll get $5 off.

Simple!

Plus, through the app, you’ll gain access to hundreds of dollars’ worth of coupons, which you can easily click to add to your account.

Need Tide laundry detergent? Crest toothpaste? Huggies diapers? When we checked, they all had coupons.

Once you sign up and “clip” all your coupons in the app, just enter your phone number at checkout, and these deals will be automatically applied to your total.

So, to sum up: Add this to the list of things that you should definitely do.

You should stay hydrated. You should trust your gut. You should use your turn signal. You should call your Mom.

And you should swing by Dollar General on Saturdays.

Mike Brassfield ([email protected]) is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. He likes a good deal.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

28 Genius Couples Halloween Costume Ideas

E-Comm: Couples Halloween CostumesWe love these products, and we hope you do too. E! has affiliate relationships, so we may get a small share of the revenue from your purchases. Items are sold by the retailer, not…

Food Network & Allrecipes Magazine Gift Subscription (No Strings Attached!)

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.

This is such a great deal on these magazine titles!!

Allrecipes

As an exclusive deal for MoneySavingMom readers, you can redeem a digital subscription to Food Network and Allrecipes magazines on us!

When you sign up for this deal, you’ll receive 10 issues of Food Network and 12 issues of Allrecipes.

No credit card is required and there are no strings attached! Your first issue will be sent to you via email!

Note: Be sure to add “bPerx” and [email protected] as a safe sender to ensure your subscription does not go to spam.

Valid through October 22nd, while supplies last.

Go here to grab this HOT deal.

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Food Network & Allrecipes Magazine Gift Subscription (No Strings Attached!)

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.

This is such a great deal on these magazine titles!!

Allrecipes

As an exclusive deal for MoneySavingMom readers, you can redeem a digital subscription to Food Network and Allrecipes magazines on us!

When you sign up for this deal, you’ll receive 10 issues of Food Network and 12 issues of Allrecipes.

No credit card is required and there are no strings attached! Your first issue will be sent to you via email!

Note: Be sure to add “bPerx” and [email protected] as a safe sender to ensure your subscription does not go to spam.

Valid through October 22nd, while supplies last.

Go here to grab this HOT deal.

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The Mega Nature Educational 600-Page Bundle for just $25 ($600 Value!!)

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.

This educational bundle looks amazing!!

Nature Mega Educational Bundle

Wow! If you’re a homeschooling family or you’re just looking for some fun educational activities, this is SUCH an amazing deal and it ends tonight!!

Right now you can get The Nature Mega Educational Bundle for just $25!

Valued at $600, this curated 600-page bundle consists of nature-themed curriculum, posters, learning cards, units, crafts, activities, and SO much more that are designed for kids of all ages. And the artwork is absolutely beautiful!

Valid through October 18, 2020.

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