Home – New Forums Marketing mastery Have confidence & stop working for free!

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  • #964123
    Ric Willmot
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    • Total posts: 141
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    Recently, there has been quite a body of discussion around regarding pricing, sales and marketing. Some people will never accept my philosophy in respect to pricing and value, nor do they have to.

    But here is what I have observed in recent times, you draw your own conclusions and make your own decisions:

    People are claiming that the current economic turmoil necessitates the reduction in prices to continue to sell your services. Really?

    1. What have you done to build your business in the last three months?
    2. Have you attended a professional association meeting for your own education?
    3. Have you attended a function where your buyers attend so you could network?
    4. Have you spoken at an industry meeting where your clients are members?
    5. Have you submitted an article to publications that your clients would read?
    6. Have you attended a seminar that will help your career?

    Procrastination is a bigger threat than the economy to those of us in professional and personal services. Those of you who have hit the items on this list above or other comparable items have profited appreciably compared to those who haven’t.

    In July last year a Business Coach joined my Mentor Program and we redesigned her proposal templates, reworked her sales approaches and increased her fees. In September she won a coaching contract with a client organisation for $82,000. This was the largest proposal she had ever written in her career. Another Member generated an additional $135,000 in revenues during October-December last year (2008) by heeding my advice and offering retainers to his existing clients.

    She’s displayed the preparedness to implement while she has listened; while he paid attention to advice even though it was outside of his normal comfort zone. Was price an issue? Yes, it was, to both of them. But once they had made the first sale to themselves, the next sale, which was to their clients wasn’t nearly as difficult.

    In the last quarter I’ve had people approach me and ask if they could attend some of my programs for free; or they will say they can’t afford to attend but plan to in the future. Asking someone for their value for free is just simply begging. They are really asking to take money out of your wallet and deposit it into their wallet. (The same principle applies to non-profits and not-for-profits, which want you to do free work because of the “exposure” you’ll receive.)

    Neither you nor your clients should expect something for nothing, else you would be providing free help 50 hours per week and never find the wherewithal to feed your family.

    As Adam Randall said yesterday in response to one of my other threads here: “You get what you pay for”.

    But you don’t have to spend money to educate yourself; however, you do have to invest time. You can learn by downloading free articles and audio from my websites; from reading my blog; and from participating and asking questions on forums such as this one.

    Are these challenging economic times? Yes.
    Do we need to re-examine our value offering to clients and potential clients? Perhaps.
    Do we have to find new and innovative service offerings to stand out from the crowd? Maybe.
    Must we reduce our prices or do things for free to survive this downturn? Definitely, not!

    If you think business is tough now, it will be more like trying to teach an elephant how to do the Pride of Erin in treacle if you start cutting your prices arbitrarily.

    Invest in yourself with education and ensure your clients invest in you for the value you can deliver for them. My response to people who ask me when is the best time to begin their coaching with me never varies: Today.

    Have confidence in yourself and stop working for free!
    Here’s to a sensational 2009 for all of you.
    Rgds,
    Ric

    #1003349
    Rachel Reeves
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    • Total posts: 148
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    Your advice here reminds me of something that one of my colleagues who is a prominant person in business today said to me just recently. Her advice was also to allocate time out of your day to training, allocate time to your own education and development. She herself allocates 2 hours every single morning. Sometimes she spends this reading an e-book, sometimes to listening to an audio training session. It is how she wakes up in the morning, a cuppa coffee and a bit of relax and learn time. I thought, wow 2 hours each morning seems like a lot of time. And then I thought, wow, this same person makes a fair amount of $’s and is a quite prominent and influential person (in a good way of course). So in conclusion I’m with you here Ric, training definitely furthers us as individuals, and in turn furthers us in business.

    #1003350
    Burgo
    Participant
    • Total posts: 2,104
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    Ric well said. I appreciate your time and your honesty for bringing us to think about what we are doing and how we are doing it.

    Training is the most valuable tool you can have in your tool kit. As an association we encourage our members to seek training not only in the technical side of their business but in the management side.

    We have had some good response to our small business course post and we had already written a couple of basic courses for those entering the industry.
    We are now taking this a step further and hopefully with the help of other members of this forum we can make our small association an association people want to join because we are able to help in areas where others cant.

    Some of our members have taken on the services of a business coach, which I see from reading the post on this forum, is a very good move on their part and I will encourage other to do so.

    When I started out in the business workforce there were no computers and comunication was by either phone ( often poor connections) or mail very slow and often didnt reach the recipient.

    I also like the 6 points you raise interesting questions.

    As for working for free, I would agree, however I am working for the association as CEO in an honery capacity untill we can build enough membership to be able to pay someone who is capable of taking the association foreward to the next level.

    In general what you have said is very true and your point about offering VALUE come up often. At one time in my carpet cleaning career I advertised that we offered exceptional value at a reasonable price. It brought a lot of customers to my door.

    Recently I retired, but wanted to remain active so I doubled my price thinking I could slow down naturally……..surprise in went the other way.
    I realise now I should have done this years ago.

    This forum started only a few weeks ago, but the timing was right. the information available on this site is so valuable you could not put a price on it . You could not buy it from a shop, nor could you get such VALUE from any course you can do.

    So thanks Ric for these very interesting posts please keep them coming
    Patrick

    #1003351
    Lisa Murray – Biz Coach
    Member
    • Total posts: 112
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    Ric
    Yes, I agree – one of the first things I do with clients is to review their pricing and increase it – weeds out the whingers and time-wasters who don’t want to pay for the value they are receiving, and free’s up your time for the great clients!

    Personally I undertake a percentage of pro bono work due to my desire to ‘give back’. I am putting tighter and tighter restrictions around this, so that I get to work with people who are genuinely needy and committed to changing their life, rather than just a freeloader who is trying it on. Much more satisfying for everyone!!

    cheers
    Lisa

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