A little more than a month ago, Aaron Wall, Lee Dodd, Jeremy Schoemaker, and Dave Taylor announced Elite Retreat.  There was a lot of buzz, a lot of linking from bloggers, and even I pondered whether I should go.  All of these guys rock.  What held me up was the price:

$4850, not including airfare or hotel.

That's steep.  Now I'm not one to say that Aaron, Lee, Jeremy, and Dave don't know their stuff.  They very well may know many things that I don't; but I do believe they've committed a cardinal sin:

Thou shalt not price people out of your product.  (And all of us know what revenue maximization is.)

Here's my theory: They don't carry the institutional weight that SES does — even if people "in the know" realize that it's a much better deal.  It's a hard sell to an employer for that when SES is a third of the price.  Employers won't be able to justify the price difference — and the individuals who understand what it offers will still likely have difficulty burning that big a hole in their wallets.

They started with a limit of 35 slots.  According to this page, they are down to only 22.  35-22 = 13.  Yes, only 13 people are going.  You can argue that the lack of the other 22 people may get you more personal attention.  But the fact remains that they didn't do as well as they could have.  Sorry guys, I think you've priced yourself out of the market.

That said, I won't say signing up is a mistake.  Not at all.  If they let me go for free, I'd love to pick their brains.  I just still have trouble justifying the price personally.

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