I’m a cheap-ass and this is EXACTLY how to get me to click “Buy”

I have to admit something, and I don’t care what you think. I’m super stingy. Like, literally, I could spend hours doing price-comparison for a computer monitor only to decide I can do without it anyway. 

Yep, I’m one of those annoying people who always tries to negotiate a price, asks way too many questions, over-researches, then to top it all off – I try to see if I can reverse-engineer it or forgo the product altogether.

But there’s something else you need to know about people like me. We do spend money on something.

You see, all cheapskates eventually end up with lots of money and are worth marketing too because of it. We eventually become millionaires and we WILL buy things but only when we see a pitch that matches our cheapo mental processes.

I’ve paid for tutors, baby apparel, rental software, and more. I frequently purchase big ticket items too like real-estate courses, marketing classes and presentation tutoring. All because I thought they were worth it. They passed my cheapness test and I want to share why that is today. 

Here’s how to sell to annoying people like me: 

1 – Don’t treat me like I’m stupid. 

Treat your clients like they’re stupid and you get stupid clients. 

  • Don’t make vague claims that are somehow extremely hyperbolic at the same time – you’re treating me like I’m stupid 
  • If you’re pushing me to the “buy” page with a bunch of flashing stars and countdowns – you think you can trick me. 
  • If you’re using pressure tactics – you’re going to drive me away. 

I’ve value-shopped for years and I know what’s going on. You can’t trick me. Cheapskates have more shopping experience and sales analysis experience than most people. We’ve seen it all.

Yes, I’m interested in saving money, but I still need products. I want to know why what you’re giving me is something I can’t do for myself. Or at least why it’s not worth doing for myself.

Personally, I’ve paid a lot for coaches and programs where I know I’d get individual attention. They didn’t have to claim to be the best on the planet, and they weren’t cheap, but their pitch was simply,  “I’ll make special lessons that will save you a lot of time compared to wandering youtube.” Simple and validatable. I was in.

2 – Time-saving is an easy sell

I know I just told you how much time I’ve wasted in an effort to save money, but I regret every minute of it. Because really, wealthy people are all about efficiency – and that relates to both money and time. 

Yes, I generally try to “reverse-engineer” before paying for something, but that’s because saving is in my bones. I hate myself a little bit every time I do it too. Every forum post, every blog or youtube spiral, every unguided trial and error kills me a little on the inside. 

What I like the least is having to vet strange claims. 

What I like the most is getting pitched on how much I’m going to save money with you. 

Overwhelm me with the sheer magnitude of it all. Tell me all the horrible “information hangovers” I’ll get after binging on 10 one-hour podcasts that just scrape the surface of the topic. How many hours you put into optimizing your product or how I could do it myself and exactly how many hours it would take me.

And then guide me to the light.

I could spend 60 hours writing some code, or pay you $300. It’s an obvious choice, my time is worth more than $5/hr. I’m not a cheap VA.

You see that’s the easy path to making something seem cheap. Admit I could do it myself and tell me how long it would take. If your product is reasonably priced I would have to value my time VERY little to do it myself. I would be making money by buying your service.

I guarantee getting more money will make a cheapass’s antenna stand up.

3 – Make me feel like I’m getting a steal (OR make me feel special) 

There is something to be said about getting a deal. I know this kind of goes against the “don’t make me feel like I’m stupid” point, but like I said before – I don’t care what you think about me. 

There’s the difference though in a trick and a deal. If you tell me something’s a three thousand dollar value that I’m just getting for five hundred bucks – that means nothing to me. Everyone says that.

But if you can refer me to something real – like what your competitors charge or that I’m getting some kind of bonus you normally do charge for – and have proof to that effect. That will help to push me over the fence and hit buy right now. 

It’s important though that it’s true. Everyone has time-limited offers and “amazing value.” Prove it, you can’t trick me so stop trying…cheapskates are shopping experts remember. 

But that’s the thing – I have to already be on the fence for that to work. I have to already value you and your product to even care about a deal.

A heavily discounted guide on how to tie my shoes won’t even enter my radar of possibility. One YouTube video would be fine.

A software program to save me 100 hrs of work… Now I’m listening. 

Do you have any frugal targeted sales tactics? I’d love to hear them.

Leif Kristjansen

I’m Leif Kristjansen, founder of FiveYearFIREescape.com where my wife and I blog about personal finance for busy people. We retired from our corporate 9-5s in our early 30s and to show you can easily do it too. We have kids and a house in a high cost of living city but we succeeded by staying focused on the important parts. Twitter: @5yearFIREescape