ASH AMBIRGE

Author, CEO & Founder

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$199 vs $200: The Difference of a Dollar is Never Just a Dollar

In: Money Talk

I was recently told a story about a man named Uncle Bill who went to Colombia, stayed in a hostel, and climbed the ladder into his bunk—even after the four bottles of wine.

Uncle Bill wasn’t your average uncle, though. Uncle Bill was eighty-nine years old. Which sounds like a lot, when you say it out loud, right? Eighty nine! What?!

But you know what it sounds less than?

Ninety.

One sounds pretty old, but not as old as ninety. Once you hear ninety, it’s an all-new level of old. We think of ninety as being nearly impossible.

A man in his eighties, though? That’s do-able. (Even if you are hooting at all the young whippersnappers.)

If you’ve ever wondered why the price is $199 instead of $200, then, it’s not because they’re trying to fool you.

It’s because we need to fool ourselves.

It’s much easier to justify spending a hundred dollars and some change (we write off the second half of the number) than two hundred dollars—even if the difference is only one dollar. Once you put the two in front of it, you’ve changed the game. Once you put the two in front of it, it takes the price into a new category. Once you put the two in front of it, you’re telling them Uncle Bill is ninety.

The psychology around the number is often more important than the actual number.

The difference of a dollar is never just the difference of a dollar.

 

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$300,000 sounds like a big fucking number, doesn’t it? But I have to tell you, that with the tools we have nowadays with the Internet, there’s almost no reason why you shouldn’t / can’t be making this in your business—WHICH SOUNDS LIKE A POMPOUS THING TO SAY, I REALIZE, BUT AT THE SAME TIME, #TOUGHLOVE […]

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Eight-thousand dollars. Eight-thousand dollars! EIGHT-THOUSAND DUH-OLLLL-ERS. That’s the (actual) amount of cold, hard cash one designer recently had charged backed by a client—and her credit card company sided with the client. Mother of ouch. More than that, though, this kind of crisis can be absolutely devastating to a freelance business that’s operating paycheck to paycheck, […]

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Aug 30

2016

$199 vs $200: The Difference of a Dollar is Never Just a Dollar

Aug 30, 2016

I was recently told a story about a man named Uncle Bill who went to Colombia, stayed in a hostel, and climbed the ladder into his bunk—even after the four bottles of wine. Uncle Bill wasn’t your average uncle, though. Uncle Bill was eighty-nine years old. Which sounds like a lot, when you say it out loud, […]

In: Money Talk

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You haven’t started saving for retirement yet. You don’t know how you’re going to pay your taxes (because you haven’t been keeping up with—what are those silly things called?—quarterly payments.) You certainly don’t have a rainy day fund. <—Said while laughing hysterically into your beer. And college? Well, the kids will just have to open […]

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2019

Ladies: DO NOT LET THEM MONEY-SHAME YOU

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You know what’s been blowing RIGHT up my skirt lately? That women are shamed for wanting money—as if this is a bad thing. We’re shamed for charging it, for thinking about it, and for daring to create something that we—brace yourselves, folks—want money for, in exchange. There’s this unspoken code of conduct that comes with […]

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I'm a Bad Influence on Women

Hey, I’m Ash! Twenty years ago I was a small town girl growing up in a trailer park in rural Pennsylvania. Fifteen years ago, I lost my family and everything I knew right as I became the first to graduate college. Fourteen years ago, I found myself leaving everything behind for a new life in the city where I could be “normal.” Ten years ago I realized normal was the most disappointing thing that ever happened to me. Nine years ago I quit my job in advertising and pursued my dreams as a creative writer. Eight years ago, I built a 6-figure business doing what I love using nothing more than the Internet and my voice. And now, today, I’m the founder of The Middle Finger Project, an irreverent media co. that helps other women find their voice and teaches them to use it to build whatever the f*ck they want to. With a book coming out with Penguin Random House in February 2020 (YASSS, WE’RE A PRODUCT IN TARGET!) I’m proud to be a bad influence on women and guide them into doing something disobediently brave with their life and their career.

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