I gave Neville $250. Here’s what I learned.

Neville Medhora

I paid Neville Medhora $250 for one hour of his time.

Neville is an awesome entrepreneur who has created a ton of very successful online courses about everything from starting a business to copywriting (you might know him from AppSumo).

I’ve been following his posts for a while now through his newsletter (subscribe here, it’s free and 100% worth your time), and I actually bought a couple of his courses before.

However, given that I’m now marketing my own course, I wanted his one-on-one consulting advice on how to increase sales through email marketing.

The pic above is of me and him during our Google Hangout. He wrote my name on a piece of paper when I told him I’ll blog about this :)

Here are 3 things I learned from him that will probably help you as well (and save you $250!)


#1 Teach ONE THING in every email

On my Couch Manager blog, I have an email list of people who sign up to receive advice about managing virtual teams. The first email my subscribers get after they sign up is a link to free training videos about effective communication.

Then in my follow up emails (which are sent out automatically at pre-determined times), I also share additional tips and techniques about managing virtual teams.

However, after going through a couple of those emails with Neville, I agreed that 1) not all of them are super-helpful, 2) they teach more than one thing (which could get confusing) and 3) some of them sounded a bit “salesy.”

So I changed most of my email messages to basically teach one single thing that is super-helpful to my readers.

My objective was for my subscribers to say “Nice! I learned something really useful from this email today.”

If I didn’t think they will, then I didn’t keep the email.


#2 Don’t sell too early (but sell hard when you do)

There are two things I was doing wrong with my email series.

The first is that I mention my course a bit too early in my email follow ups.

The second is that when I do mention it, I mention it casually (as in “hey, check out my course if you found this helpful”).

Neville’s advice was:

  • Don’t sell too early: I should have at least 3 to 4 emails in my follow up series that provide incredible value first
  • When you sell, sell hard: This means that I should give the readers solid reasons about why I think they should buy my course, and how they’re going to benefit from it. Not just casually mention it as if it’s on the sidelines.

He gave me an actual example of what I should write in one of my emails that has a high open rate (the subject of that email is “How ONE WORD can influence your team to get things done”)

Here’s the script he wrote to help me get to a harder sell, which comes after the main part of the email:


It’s interesting to know that simply implementing this ONE word in your emails can increase your productivity by such a massive amount.

If you’re interested in REALLY taking your virtual team to the next level, make sure to grab a copy of my course: Managing and Influencing Virtual Teams.  It’s a video instruction course that by the end will free up so much of your time spent doing useless tasks like:

  • Spending 3 ½ hours just SCHEDULING a half hour meeting (useless)
  • Following up with 10 people from 10 different places in the world (confusing)
  • Having to play “email detective” just to find out whose responsibility something was (useless AND confusing)

I invite you to grab the course, find a quiet place to watch, and after just a few of the video modules you can improve your workday.  By “improve” I mean do less of the boring/useless crap you don’t enjoy, and more of the actual work you’d like to get done.

So grab a copy of the training today (most of the time your manager at work will even reimburse you for this)….and become a more efficient manager (and be happier at work) tomorrow.  Here’s the link

By the way, Neville wrote this LIVE on Google Docs as I was talking to him (it was great seeing an experienced copywriter do his magic on the spot).


#3 Always have a call to action (using P.S. at the end)

Neville mentioned that if there’s one thing I take from my entire consult with him, it would be that I should always have a call to action at the end of my emails (preferably as a “P.S.”). The call to action could be a simple question asking my readers to give me feedback.

The reasons for a call to action are that:

  1. People sometimes only read the last sentence of an email. So the last line has a high degree of readability.
  2. Having a call to action will help me gauge how effective my emails are. If people respond to an email, then that email is being read. If they don’t, then that email probably needs some re-crafting.
  3. I can gather some good info about my market’s pain points, which I can then create a solution for and share on my email list in the future.


So was it worth it?

You might be thinking: was paying Neville $250 for one hour of his time worth it? (this is a big sum of money).

I’ll let the numbers speak for themselves.

3 days after I implemented the tips he recommended (the ones I mentioned above, plus a few others we talked about), I made 2 sales from my course.

So I made $294 after spending $250. That’s the fastest return on investment I’ve had in a while. Plus, I’m sure those tips will bring me additional sales in the next few weeks and months, so I’d say it was DEFINITELY worth it.

Hope this helped you as much as it helped me!



P.S. The course that Neville was helping me out with is called Managing and Influencing Virtual Teams. Check it out here if this is something you’re interested in.

P.P.S. See how the P.S. worked? 😉


  1. That’s awesome! Thanks Hassan for sharing your experience and making what you learned accessible. You’re the best!

  2. Well written, thanks! While making my post yesterday, I saw yours (top 3 on Google!). I agree it was a great eye opener. See my post here: http://www.leanpump.com/mistakes-i-made-with-a-membership-site-revealed-by-neville-medhora/