Why I’m Breaking All the Rules

written by Bari Tessler November 18, 2013

This is the third post in the Golden Nugget Series: a collection of the sweetest, bite-sized tidbits of my work. It’s all celebrating the The Art of Money, my year-long money school. If you’re new here, subscribe for updates and money wisdom at the bottom of this post!

My dear community,

One thing my life as a creative entrepreneur has taught me, again and again:

This life is your dance. You, and only you, have the power to choose how you’ll dance it.

For me, the most important drumbeat I dance to is my heart. And here’s what my heart loves — ahem, demands:

Elegance. Creativity. Transparency. Gentleness. Beauty. Integrity. Artistry. Courage. Healthy Boundaries. Love and more Love.

In every area of my life — including and especially my business — I am compelled to put these values first and foremost. To live in alignment with my heart, my soul, and the soul of my business.

Sometimes, this means breaking some rules. Sometimes, it means breaking A LOT of rules.

Of course, I learn from experts (constantly, and with gratitude). But my eyes are too open to blindly follow anyone’s “rules” about things that truly matter to me. And goodness, gracious, does my business matter to me: from the depth of my heart to the bottoms of my toes.

Cookie cutters are fine for the kitchen. But they are not allowed in my business.

So I break the rules. A lot of them. Business growth rules. Marketing rules. Assumed joint venture protocols. If the “conventional wisdom” doesn’t jive with my vision, my integrity, my intuition, the artistry of my path — I find a new way.

Today, I’m sharing a little behind-the-scenes goodness from over here at Bari HQ, specifically about how I do “launches,” or what I call “openings.”

For the entrepreneurs in the house: I hope this is helpful and inspiring. And for everyone, entrepreneur or not: I hope this gives you a better feel for who I am and how I run my business. And of course, there are plenty nuggets o’ wisdom that apply to every area of your life.

Launching is a big, hairy THING in this business.

In case you’re not familiar with the online marketing world: a “launch” is simply the release of a new product or service. And all the online marketing “gurus” have a million strategies, tactics, and rules about How This Should Be Done.

THEY say, “Only let people buy for five days, so it creates urgency and quick spending decisions!” “Hit your customers’ ‘pain points’ and trigger fear of missing out if they don’t buy!” “Get aggressive and promote, promote, promote! Email your list 4 times a day in the final days of your launch!” And on. And on. And ugh.

Granted: these tactics and “rules” can be quite effective in generating cash. But …

In my world, there’s way more to “success” than simply “cash.”

Like … 

~ Helping people become more conscious (especially around spending money!).

~ Creating a community of people who arrived because they were motivated by love, rather than fear.

~ Finding yourself leading a group of your RIGHT people, rather than a group of the wrong people who bought your program because you pulled all their unconscious psychological triggers.

~ Creating something that’s sustainable, for you and the people you serve.

Those “traditional” online marketing approaches simply don’t align with these deeper definitions of success, for me. Whenever I see them these days, all I can think is, “Not in my business. Period.”

Even without strictly following these hyper-masculine “rules” (they’ve always given me the yucks), the whole idea of “launching” was a huge stressor for me and Forest for years. Between both of our businesses, it sometimes felt like our household was constantly in “launch mode.” Even though we felt solid and proud of everything we were offering, the sheer intensity was seriously stressful. And totally unsustainable.

Last year, we declared it: we were done with launches.

It all started when I dreamed up The Art of Money program. The entire spirit of this program was more feminine, more ease-ful, more gently powerful than anything I’d ever created. And it called for a whole new way of doing business. That old level of stress simply wasn’t allowed in our home or businesses anymore.

Our new approach was radically different:

Softer, gentler, more feminine.

Less “go, go, go!” and more clear, open spaces for people to make conscious choices.

No pushing, just opening. Heart-opening. We would shift the energy of the whole thing. Turn the traditional product launch model upside-down and create our own version.

I gently forbid my team from using the “L” word. We called January of 2013 “the opening” instead. This page was not to be called the “sales page,” it was the “program page.”

We dreamed up a new way — without fake urgency, discounts, dozens of added “bonuses,” or fancy footwork. We would simply open the doors to the program, and then send out really good stuff to help people make a great decision about joining us. We would trust that the program and content would speak for themselves, and that our community would have everything they needed to find their “yes.”

We lovingly created the Golden Nugget Series: an entire month of amazing money wisdom, and shared it in the spirit of celebration and generosity.

The response to our shift in energy was immediate and powerful. We received comments like:

Bari, I just read through your Art of Money offering and I am moved to tears. The way you are doing this…with no sales pressure, no time limitations (i.e., “sign up in the next 4 hours and get half price”), and no gimmicks…your straight forward offering of your skill and your heart… I’m broken open.

I feel such gratitude and hope… hope for the way that offerings and “sales” can be done with integrity… SO grateful for the way you do your business, your life. My whole heart celebrates this birth, and how you are giving birth here… to your finest offering yet.

Thank you for bringing to money and business such heart, such grace, such simplicity and truth. I am learning at a deep level by witnessing from afar the way you have birthed this creation.

With love and heart-elation…
~ From a dear member of our community

Right then, we knew we were on to something. And it felt good. Aligned. Creative. Powerful.

And by breaking all of the rules, we enjoyed overwhelming success: both in how enjoyable the entire process felt to us, AND in the number of people we welcomed to our program. 320 amazing people joined us for the Art of Money 2013.

So this year, we’ve taken this new approach even further.

We’ve deepened our understanding of just how meaningful, beautiful, and soulful an opening can be. For the opening of The Art of Money 2014:

~ We want everything — behind the scenes and for our community — to feel not just relaxed but full-blown luxurious.
~ Every strategic quandary is solved with the question, “What’s the most elegant, heart-opening option?”
~ We’ve given folks almost 3 full months to get a taste of The Art of Money, including a month of Money Memoirs and a revamped re-release of the Golden Nuggets Series.
~ We’ve infused The Art of Money program page itself with money wisdom and teachings.

Sure, there’s urgency. The Art of Money train leaves soon.
But it’s authentic urgency:

  • We only begin this program once a year.

No ALL CAPS flashing red headlines saying, “Buy Now!” No countdown timers on a pushy sales page, rushing towards some arbitrary deadline when the offer and bonuses will disappear (for no good reason other than to trigger your fear and sense of urgency.)

Nope. Not in my business. Period. Instead, we’re informing and empowering you to join us if and when you’re called.

We do this for you, my dear community.
Simply put: traditional online marketing tactics don’t work with my community. You guys are too smart, too sensitive, and too wise. You can sniff out manipulation from a mile away. And false urgency and gimmicks? Forget about it. They’re simply beneath you.

But it’s even deeper than that. My entire body of work is about creating healthier, more conscious relationships with money. If I were to pressure people into buying my programs through fear tactics and gimmicks, what a horrible misalignment that would be.

I want you to make great money choices. 

As someone who provides a paid-for program, then, it’s essential to me to give you every tool I have to make a great choice about this program.

I want you to have the sweetest, most enjoyable tastes of it — tastes that will support you even if you never invest in my program. I want you to experience my approach, my voice, my style, so you’ll know whether we’ll jive together for a year. I want you to see the entire format of the program so you’ll have a full, mind-heart-body YES if it’s for you.

And we do this for ourselves, too.

I firmly believe that …

How we show up in our life — including and especially in our business — needs to be heart-felt, unique, and founded in our deepest values.

How we treat our teams and collaborators and customers needs to be soul-aligned with what we’re teaching.

If more people create a conscious relationship with money, we will begin to heal so much of what’s wrong in this world.

The use of manipulative, fear-based marketing tactics to pressure people in to buying online programs and products is contributing to some of the biggest problems we face today as a global society.

So let’s break the rules.

I’m working to help people wake up to their money relationships. One transaction, one moment, one breath at a time. Will you join us?

If this is your year to befriend money, in all its aspects…
To enjoy the support of an incredible community…
To learn from amazing, eclectic guest teachers…
To join me as your loving guide and resident Financial Therapist…

Join us in The Art of Money program.

In the spirit of our honest, luxurious opening, I want you to feel crystal-clear and empowered in this decision. Know: you have an incredible treasure trove at your fingertips to help you decide if this program is right for you. Content, samples, resources, and support. All of that, plus details, registration, and money wisdom are right here. The journey begins soon.

It is such a gift to live my dream of guiding a conscious money movement. I am beyond grateful. Thank you, my dear community, for being a part of this amazing adventure.



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