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How to Sell More This Year, Featuring Pier One Imports + Hot Dogs. Yeah, Hot Dogs.

In: Online Marketing

Holy disco ball, it's 2012.

I've (just now) decided that this year is going to be all about less vodka, more water. …Maybe.

It's also going to be about silk sheets, billiards, baseball hats, and love. Yeah, that's right. Luh-uh-ve. I'm going to fall madly in love this year. And that person is going to fall madly in love with me back. I just know it.

He better be hot.

Anyway, while I was performing all of this high-level brainstorming, it occurred to me that I should probably come up with a few 2012 predictions for you, too.

You must be thrilled.

So here's what I'm thinking 2012 is going to include for you:

  • Less water, more vodka
  • Sweatpants in every color
  • Your first big success
  • Your first big failure
  • Increased thoughts of homicide
  • Hot dogs (what? they are good)
  • Uncertainty
  • Frustration
  • Burnout
  • (I'm making your year sound awesome, aren't I?)
  • A love hate relationship with the internet
  • A love hate relationship with yourself
  • A love hate relationship with everyone else
  • Deodorant. Lots of it. You know…from sweatin' that to-do list. (Oooohhhhhh! Ambirge's got jokes!)
  • Oh, and money.
  • Money.
  • MONEY.
  • Money that feels good to make.
  • Money that feels so good to make, you don't even feel slightly guilty about impulsive purchasing that gorgeous sexpot of a mirror because it's the hottest thing you've ever seen and you pretty much want to make love on top of it every single moment of every single day. Followed by heavy cigar smoking. Obviously.


That's pretty much your 2012 in a nutshell.

But in between your hot dog filled, homicidal money making extravaganza this year, I want you to remember two very important things:

1. Eucalyptus is disgusting. (Unrelated)

2. No matter what you're building, the key to selling is about MAKING PEOPLE CARE. 

I don't care what business you're in – the key to selling will always be about making people care.

Can we talk about Pier One for a minute?

Not because they're the ones who sell that sex pot of a mirror, but because as I was perusing their site today, they sold me on something that I would have never purchased in infinity number of years:  Wicker.


The thought alone brings back images of grandmothers, mothballs and swirly pink, white and purple seat cushions.


I stumbled upon a sales page for wicker furniture, and caught myself getting really into it.

The reason?

Not only do they list the products and their descriptions, they include entire sections educating buyers on the intricacies of wicker furniture – what it is, how it differs from other types like rattan and cane, how wicker is made, and fun facts about wicker.

For example, did you know that it takes approximately 10,000 weavers to produce enough wicker merchandise to supply 1000 Pier 1 stores? And that an experienced weaver can only complete two chairs a day?

Fucking fascinating!

So there I was, reading all about wicker, and getting really into it. I found myself thinking: Wow – I want some wicker! It's so exotic! 

A thought I've never had before.

Because before, I didn't care.

But Pier One did an exceptional job of making me care today by giving me a nice, easily digestible interesting backstory that not only helped me to appreciate the furniture, but also make a new association in my head, from old lady to exotic.

And now I'm all hot for it.

And with that comes the third really important thing you need to remember for 2012:  Just because people aren't shopping…doesn't mean they aren't buying. Understand how to leverage that, and 2012 is yours.

How to Use This Information

If you're a web designer with a portfolio, I don't want to just see your portfolio. I want to know the story behind what the client started with, what they wanted, and how you made it happen.

If you're a life coach with services, I don't want to just see your service. I want to know the story behind what your services have done for other people you've coached. You don't need to include their real names. But tell their stories.

If you're a makeup artist with before + after photos, I don't want to just see before + after photos. I want to know the story behind how you accomplished the look, given that person's situation.

If you're a candle maker with a new collection, I don't want to just see the collection. I want to know the story behind why this collection was imagined, which mood each evokes, and examples of perfect circumstances to light 'em.


As human beings, it's stories we can connect with. It's stories we can see ourselves in. It's stories that make me feel something. It's stories that make me care about you. And it's stories that will make me give you my money.

Tell 'em.

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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.

Enter your email address and I’ll send you my advice column every week sharing everything I’ve learned—and so much more.

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