How Ramit Blogged (And Promoted) His Way To The Best Seller List

A few years ago, Ramit Sethi was a personal finance blogger whose site nobody knew. After building up a loyal following on his site,, he got a book deal. Thanks to his blog’s readers, his new book, “I Will Teach You To Be Rich,” hit the New York Times and Wall street Journal best-seller lists.

Ramit Sethi is a New York Times bestselling author and founder of,

In this edited excerpt from his Mixergy interview, he talks about how he marketed his blog.

If you build it, they will not come!

You’ve got to build something great–and then tell the right people about it.

I’ll give you an example. One of my favorite posts is called “The $28,000 Question. Why are we all hypocrites about our weddings?” It involves what we all say, which is, “When I have a wedding, I just want it to be simple and beautiful. Just small and beautiful.” Which, of course, is a total lie.

When you have your wedding, you want it to be the best. You want it to be the biggest. And of course, it makes sense. It’s you wedding.

So I said, “Why don’t we acknowledge that and be realistic about it?”

It got a lot of people thinking about it. But the key the success of that post was both writing it (and making it really tactical and having numbers in there), and then going and telling the wedding bloggers.

A lot of times people just write and think, “Let my readers come.”

Nobody cares about personal finance in general. Nobody says, “I want to be a personal finance expert.” If you do, you’re a big nerd. But, if you happen to be planning a wedding, I bet you’re reading a bunch of wedding blogs.

So, if you think of personal finance as a funnel, then you get people in at the wedding level and maybe they say, “Oh, I should check out this guy’s stuff on Roth IRA’s, or what he says about investor psychology.” And all of a sudden that’s 2,000 new readers.

So you’ve got to write great stuff, but in my experience, you also have to tell the right people about it.


22 thoughts on “How Ramit Blogged (And Promoted) His Way To The Best Seller List – with Ramit Sethi

  1. Deep Patel says:

    hahaha, how to negotiate like an Indian…I think Neil Patel would be a good person to chime in on that subject.

    A couple ways I am getting the word about our site:

    #1 – we have an RSS feed for everything including our blog posts, a product feed, and even what's going on our community. We keep the data open and allow people to easily pull the feed and aggregate our information. For example our feed is on AllTop and solarfeeds and many other websites which drive traffic and increase credibility

    #2 – I add value added comments on other blogs and publications in our niche. Also I write articles for publications and websites to help them reach their goals of providing value added content to their readers, in return we build our brand.

    #3 – I use twitter search to find out who is talking about our products, then join into the conversation. Typically they have a question I have already answered on my blog which I send the person a link to.

    #4 – not being afraid to talk about what we do. speak about what we do every chance I get. That includes talking to someone in an elevator to participating at bloblive, being involved with clubs and industry associations. Having superior networking skills and following up with every person I meet.

  2. Khuram Malik says:

    This is easily one of the best interviews on here ever.
    They're all good, but this one is great.

  3. Khuram Malik says:

    My god i've used so many of Ramit's tactics myself, and i dont even know him.
    Maybe i should start sharing some of my stories!

    I negotiate like a royal Pakistani

  4. PT Money says:

    Thanks for sharing this interview, Andrew. Ramit's comment in the video just slapped me across the face. I'm definitely the nerd he's talking about. I need to do a better job of cross promoting my content to users who aren't total nerds like me.

    Downloaded the mp3, plan to listen on my moble device this week. Glad I discovered you.

  5. Jose Maria says:

    Andrew, How do you find all this cool people? Just another awesome interview. The only thing is that I would've liked to listen some more information about how he marketed PBWiki. That would've been interesting too. I guess I will have to contatc Ramit directly to ask him about that :)

  6. AndrewWarner says:

    Deep, is AllTop sending you traffic?

  7. AndrewWarner says:

    Thanks Jose. Keep letting me know what I miss.

    I this case, I did a pre-interview with him and realized that there was more
    value in his post-PBWiki experiences.

  8. Deep Patel says:

    yup, AllTop is sending us traffic. Not much, but every visitor counts in my opinion. The bounce rate is quite high from the traffic we get from AllTop. I think the advantages of being on all top include:

    #1 – improves your blogs credibility since AllTop is an authoritative source for info.

    #2 – has a 6/10 Page Rank. Everytime I throw up a blog post I instantly get a link on a page with high rankings, that can't hurt.

  9. That REALLY a valuable interview. Thank you so much for sharing. I'm actually sitting here with his book ;-)

  10. Andy Dang says:


    Another great interview. I think I replayed this interview at least 5 times while I was working on my websites. What I got out of it is to spend lots of time building the business but spend even more time promoting your business to others.

    I think a lot of people get excited about a business idea, they create the plan, the goals, even the entire website without testing their products or services on their customers. The business tends to never get completed because they know that at the end, they would have to SELL.

    And selling means that customers may say NO to their offers, which ultimately might mean that the entire business idea was a waste of time. So these people who build the site, procrastinate by redesigning the website, finding more features to add, finding more business books to read, simply to avoid the end stage of actually selling.

    I think more people need to test their product as soon as possible, so they know the market is there. And they need to get over the fear of selling, otherwise there's no point of building the business in the first place.

    I think this is a great blog post by on testing the market:

    Andrew, I am dying to hear an interview regarding the issue I described above, or even just the tactics of selling. Thanks again, I check your site everyday for new interviews. You're providing amazing value to a lot of people. PS: reading about your story on Neil's blog. Take cares.

    Andy Dang

  11. AndrewWarner says:

    He's a good writer.

    When I read his book, I feel like I'm listening to someone I'd want to have
    a beer with.

  12. AndrewWarner says:

    In business, hearing “no” needs to be your fuel. It needs to be what fires
    you up and gets you excited about figuring out the way to get to 'yes.”

  13. Jeremy says:

    What I have to agree with most is to work side projects and to work for free. I can alredy see my free work is going to propel me further than my 60 hour per week engineering position ever will.

  14. AndrewWarner says:

    I love that part. My free work at Dale Carnegie meant more to me than any
    job I could have gotten.

    I pulled a clip of Ramit talking about this issue. I'm thinking of posting
    it because it's so good.

    So what's the side job and what'd you get out of it?

  15. Jeremy says:

    It's mostly the work I do for your sister's company. It's more satisfying than any paid position I have ever had.

  16. AndrewWarner says:

    They're lucky to have you. I hear how brilliant you are.

  17. Truly speaking, Ramit Sethi is a my role model. He has proved that perseverance and hard work will earn you total success in your endeavors. All you have to do is portray good staff and make sure you tell the right people.

  18. AndrewWarner says:

    He's a very smart guy.

    I think people who never heard of him before my posts, need to keep an eye
    on him. He's going far in the personal finance business. If you watch him
    now, you can learn how he's *really* doing it. If you wait too long, you'll
    have to read the *PR version* that magazines always make up after someone
    breaks big.

    I'm really glad I met him.

  19. Please give me more information. I love it, Thanks again.

  20. Please give me more information. I love it, Thanks again.

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