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Creative Pricing, The Art of Marketing, & Overhauling Your Agenda (Reading Notes 6.27.18)

Resource: Pricing philosophy


Sivers recounts a time when he was invited to perform a college that was a 12 hour drive from where he stayed. When asked about his price, he quoted $1500 for the 2 hours requested. When asked what he would charge for only 1 hour he said $1200. The person who asked him was confused why he would charge more for less time. Sivers then explained that it costs more because he would have to drive 12 hours for only one hour of playing, but that he’d charge less if she let him play for two hours before leaving. She liked his answer so much that she came up with the $1500. The moral here is that it’s important to have guiding principles beyond the dollar signs when you’re naming your price.

Be creative, have personality, and don’t arbitrarily adhere to strict rules.

When you charge others for your work, think about all the elements involved in what you’re charging for and make sure things are right for you. Your skillset and your performance are not the sole factors. Think about your time and the enjoyment you’d get out of the work.


“Business is creative. You can do things any way you want. There’s no need to adhere to norms. Norms are for businesses without personality.”

“Pour your personality and philosophy into the way you do business. People actually appreciate it when you do things in a surprising way. It shows you care more than most — that you’re putting your self into this — that you’re not just in it for the money.”

Resource: Art doesn’t end at the edge of the canvas.


Making your art is only one side of the creative process. The other side is marketing your art.

The marketing process demands just as much forethought and imagination as the making process.

When you put together an album, or a painting, or a podcast, you focus on all the details involved. You undermine that process when you treat marketing as if it’s just about uploading the video or hitting the publish button. If you take time with the making, take time with the marketing.

Creativity doesn’t end with marketing. It simply enters the next step of the process.


“The way you present your art, and what people know about it, completely changes how they perceive it. Therefore, your art doesn’t end at the edge of the canvas. Your creative decisions continue all the way to the end.”

“Marketing is the final extension of your art.”

Resource: Who sets your agenda?


Who sets your agenda? Are your daily plans determined by internal or external forces? Do you spend most of your time putting out fires or setting forth intentions?

It’s good to know who sets your agenda. It’s better to be the one setting it.

We tend to assume that our agendas are correct and we mostly focus on making minor corrections. What possibilities would emerge if you challenged yourself to overhaul your agenda? What changes could you make to how you approach work, hobbies, family, and other things to not only improve productivity but to also alter your underlying framework?


“Because we do it every day, we tend to take it for granted. We assume our agenda is exactly the right one, and we tweak it, we don’t overhaul it. What if, on Wednesday, you overhauled it?”

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