Reader, got a question for ya.
Would you ask for a refund in this situation?
This is something that happened to me. Read it all first before you reply and tell me. And I’ll tell you what I did and why.
From December 2017 to May 2018 (or around about that time) I paid Traffic & Funnels (T&F) approximately $40,000 to teach me how to get clients.
I first joined their flagship program, ClientKit (CK.) That was $9800 for a 10-week program. Once that was done I joined their next tier up, CK Elite. Can’t remember the exact price but it was around the $10,000 mark back then. Four payments of about $10,000 each.
And did I get any clients out of it? One. A $1,500 project from someone I met in CK. I bet on myself in a big way and LOST $38,5000. Pissed off is an understatement.
I learned some months later they were going through a bunch of internal issues. Victims of their own success. When you scale a company you create mess and technical debt. A lot of things break. And T&F was scaling aggressively when I joined.
Turns out, I wasn’t the only one who was having a less-than-stellar experience. There were a lot of complaints about the support and results (or lack thereof.) At one point, one of their customers sued them, or threatened to sue them, or tried to get a class action lawsuit going. And one of their VIP customers broke off to create a competing product, taking a lot of the disgruntled students with him.
I know all this because one of the co-founders posted about it on more than one occasion. This is all common knowledge if you were around Facebook back then so I’m not saying anything revelatory.
Dunno how many refunds they had to give out but it’s a fair guess to say that number is not insignificant. It got so bad that the founders had to do damage control, posting in their client community about improvements they were making, how things were going to get better, yada yada yada.
This is my recollection of events from 2018, so they may not be perfect. But all of this happened. And I don’t know what T&F is like now; pretty sure they fixed all their issues because they kept growing.
And despite everything that was going on… All of the complaints and disgruntled customers and refunds they had to give out… Despite the fact that I dumped 40 grand down them and didn’t make my money back…
I didn’t ask them for a refund.
Business was slow and I really could’ve used that money back. But I didn’t ask for a refund. Let me tell you why. Maybe this is cope or cognitive dissonance or me rationalizing in hindsight, but this is what I remember. I looked at the situation in a few ways.
1. Did I use all the resources and support they made available? I did not.
I actually didn’t realize this was a group coaching program until halfway through. This was also the winter my dad passed on, so I didn’t log in for two weeks after signing up. Might’ve only active in the program for maybe 3 weeks out of the 10 allotted. And I only implemented around 20% of the program. Didn’t launch my webinar funnel. Didn’t get to the paid traffic part of the program.
Can I blame them for my lack of action? No. It was my own damn fault I didn’t get results.
2. Did I want to be THAT GUY? Did I want to be a refunder? I did not.
On top of the fact that I couldn’t ethically claim a refund, I didn’t want bad vibes that come with refunding. Call it woo-woo but I believe what goes around comes around. Plus, the high ticket space is small and people talk. You don’t wanna be known as a refunder.
No client has ever asked me for a refund.
3. Did I learn things that made me a lot more than $40,000? I did.
A few valuable marketing concepts like the 2-step. You might know this as the Auto DM campaign. I learnt it from them and then was one of the first people to popularize it on Twitter.
Sales, even though I don’t sell the way they teach. Qualifying people over DM, selling on the phone.
I learned how to write for the high-ticket space. Being in and around these people exposed me to the ideal customer, the business model, the pros and cons. Writing for a handful of clients in the high-ticket space has made me multiples of six figures and made my clients millions.
I also learned how NOT to built a business. One of the reasons why I’m still boutique is that I want ALL my clients to win. I don’t want 15% success rates, or worse, which is common in the high-ticket space. Not only does this model suck for customers, it sucks for the people working in these companies. There are plenty of stories.
4. Did I get an intangible ROI, something you can’t measure in dollars and cents? I did.
Being around 7- and 8-figure business owners. This was HUGE. Before T&F I was only hanging around other copywriters. Your average copywriter’s holy grail is $100,000 per year. In CK I was around people who’d make $100,000 per day. And I realized making six figures a year is EASY.
I met some magnificent copywriters/entrepreneurs. Sarah Temte, one of only two writers I’m professionally jealous of. Dennis Demori, we’ve collabed on a bunch of stuff. Sam Ocean, who’s doing big things partnering with creators. Fraser Wylie of Lambros fame, who wrote copy for Andrew Tate. Mike Mark, who ended up becoming my best client ever long after I’d left CK.
Mental Game. This was all Taylor. He’d casually drop aphorisms here and they’d be a paradigm shift. This one is vivid and I quote it often: paying your tuition.
Every entrepreneur has to pay their tuition. You can pay it over 6 months or you can pay it over 10 years. And you can’t graduate until you’re paid up. You might as well pay it NOW… SO THAT you can have the success you want NOW.
Normies and Coffeezilla-types will not get this. You have to be an entrepreneur to understand.
5. Did I die? I did not.
I did have to eat shit for many months until my business and finances recovered. But I made it all back and then some.
I’m good. My family’s good. My business has been growing every year. $40,000 well-spent imo. Charge it to the Game.
P.S. If you think $40,000 is a lot of money to learn business, it’s not. I’ve invested over $100,000 in my education.
P.P.S. If you think this is a negative review of T&F, read it again and pay attention this time.
P.P.P.S. Whenever you’re ready, here’s how I can help.