ASH AMBIRGE

Author, CEO & Founder

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Don’t Beg for Business. Command It.

In: How to Sell Yourself

Bring me to your granny's birthday party, and I'm sweet as a lemon square. (My favorite.)

Bring me to meet the parents, and I'll bust out the pearls.

Bring me anywhere, and you'll get sweet, demure Ashley.

But bring me to a board room?

And it's shark time.

If you're like most people, the mere thought of pitching ideas, speaking in front of a room, or asking for the sale is nauseating. But for some sick, alien-like creatures like myself…it's the most thrilling thing in the world. 

There's nothing better than nailing that delivery. Having a roomful of people on the edge of their seats. Commanding respect. And landing the deal.

Most people, however, are under the impression that being able to do something like that well requires natural talent. An outgoing disposition. A go-getter attitude. And a thick skin.

But most people are slightly, respectfully, (really) wrong. At least when it comes to this little fun-filled arena of anxiety-inducing affairs.

Because in a situation like this, it isn't about what nature brought to the table (though a solid set of dimples never hurts). It's about what YOU bring to the table.

And what you bring to the table can be learned.

For example, when most people go into a meeting to sell something, they inevitably open with some variation of the line, “Thank you for taking the time to meet with me today.” But guess what? That's a piss poor idea, because the minute they open their mouth with something like that, they've already lost the sale.

When I was in advertising, I'd always open a meeting with, “I'm so glad I could come down and meet with you today; I've only got 20 minutes, so let's get started.”

And there's a big difference in those two opening statements. One assumes a submissive position; the other assumes a dominant position. It demonstrates to a prospect that they, as a prospect, are the commodity–not you. There's a million people you could be doing business with. But…there's only one you.

And by extension, they, as the prospect, need to be selling you on why you should do business with them–and not the other way around.

It's a simple change of mind set. And if you walk into any meeting with the perspective that you're doing them a favor?

Everything changes. 

That, however, was not something I came out of the womb instinctively knowing. It's something I studied. Something I read about. Something I experimented with over the years. And something I learned.

And that, really, is the point of it all.

Anything is learnable.

Pitching. Business chops. Marketing. Writing. Design. And anything else you want to throw into the mix.

You can do this.

You can do anything.

And you can be damn good at anything, too.

But you can't just wing it and expect to be a pro.

You've got to learn how.

So the next time you royally screw something up? Instead of berating yourself for it–go read about how to do it better next time.

Because piss poor never won any awards.

Jun 12

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You know how when you want to sound professional on the phone, you do that thing where you clear your throat, steady your voice, and then inevitably start talking THREE OCTAVES HIGHER in that sickening sweet, Southern-Belle-esque manner, almost as if you were speaking to a priest, or maybe the sheriff, all while using words […]

In: How to Sell Yourself

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Apr 18

2013

Don’t Beg for Business. Command It.

Bring me to your granny’s birthday party, and I’m sweet as a lemon square. (My favorite.) Bring me to meet the parents, and I’ll bust out the pearls. Bring me anywhere, and you’ll get sweet, demure Ashley. But bring me to a board room? And it’s shark time. If you’re like most people, the mere […]

In: How to Sell Yourself

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2014

Running a Holiday Sale? Memorize This by Heart.

So the other day I’m Christmas shopping here in Costa Rica, which is automatically hilarious because, first of all, because they spell “Ho Ho Ho!” like “Jo Jo Jo!” which never gets less funny, and second, because Santa was dressed in a royal blue suit. (I still haven’t decided if this is posh or ridiculous, […]

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If you’re a freelancer, there are two different power dynamics: Hire me! Please hire me! I’m shitting my pants, over here, because I’m depending on you entirely and I’ll do anything it takes, even work for peanuts, because I need you to take mercyyyyy onnnnn meeeeee. Listen to me. I’m great at what I do, […]

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2017

If You Don’t Feel Comfortable Saying, “Step Right Up and Try My Milkshake, Folks!” There Might Be a Problem With Your Product—Not Your Confidence

Small soft chocolate lady was my favorite. She’d arrive in a sand-colored pick-up truck; a small one, I’d say, for a pick-up truck in Susquehanna County. She’d dismount as if she were in a rush, though I knew she was only going back to the grocery store she owned. I’d have her cone ready by […]

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Dec 15

2011

List Your Prices (THE RIGHT WAY) (Calling All Photographers.) (Hedgehogs Welcome, Too.)

As an entrepreneur, sometimes you fall flat on your face. Figuratively–and, apparently, literally–namely when you’re traveling in the South of Chile pretending to be in better shape than you actually are while attempting to jump over pathetically small streams that you really should be able to fucking clear, but somehow, don’t, and manage to fall flat […]

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Sep 14

2014

If you’re both killer & poet, YOU GET RICH.

“Most good copywriters fall into two categories: Poets and Killers. Poets see an ad as an end. Killers, as a means to an end. If you are both killer & poet? You get rich.” Ogilvy once said that about copywriters, but that’s just because he wasn’t around long enough to see the internet blow up. […]

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2017

If You Want Someone to Say Yes to You, and Love You, and Give You Their Money, Read This

Today’s the day my private retreat participants arrive here to the world’s most wonderful boutique hotel here in The Cotswolds (I’ll show you later, when I don’t run the risk of some random Freddie Krueger on the Internet showing up and ruining EVERYTHING AKA sawing our hands off in the middle of the night—“you’ll never […]

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