There’s a lot of fear and worry around right now. I get it. There’s no doubt many small businesses are being hit hard right now.
And it’s influencing pricing decisions.
I’m seeing a lot of people making free offers or discounting their products and programmes as a way of trying to generate income. But discounting to survive is a slippery slope, especially when your offer gets drowned out by all the other discounters. Plus you run the danger of creating something that you simply won’t be able to sustain over the coming months. Low prices mean you have to have a high volume of clients to give you the same level of income before you started to discount. You have to be sure you have the resources, mindset, systems and team to support you long past the initial creation and launch.
Flight or fight is there to save you in a life-threatening situation. It’s not to help you decide how to price your products.
If you are feeling rattled, anxious or worried, don’t let yourself knee jerk your way through your business right now. Take a moment to review your current pricing decisions and, if you are wondering whether you should be discounting, follow these steps first.
Step One – Get clear on the value you offer.
Read through your testimonials and case studies and remind yourself exactly what it is you do for others. I teach my clients to follow the guidelines of Partnership Power; both they and their clients are equal in the relationship of buying and selling. If you feel you want to start discounting and this is coming from a place of fear, then you are giving up some of your selling power.
You can very quickly go from being of service to being a servant, which you’ll find challenging to shift back from.
Step Two – Decide what you want out of making a new offer.
Do you really need to worry about income right now? Yes, there is every chance you have to assess your position in the market place and what you can be adjusting and adapting to in the next few weeks and months. But be aware of how quickly one can get whipped up into a worry storm when everyone around you is too. If you get caught up with the busy-ness of creating new, cheap or free offers, then you’re going to find it difficult to assess the bigger picture and see the True Profit™ opportunities ahead of you.
If it’s a genuine offer of help you want to make to your clients – a short term offer that you’re making to be of service in a time of need – then create a product to reflect the price. Thus you aren’t discounting but creating a new, low priced product.
Step Three – What do the top 20% of your marketplace want help with right now?
The Pareto principle states that 80% of results come from 20% of the effort, so see how this is working in your marketplace right now. Many of your clients will be experiencing fear and worry too, so the truth is that you may not be able to help most of them right at this moment in time.
Lots of people are setting up new free Facebook groups, often coming from a place of genuine desire to help and support. However, there is a danger that they will be getting distracted by a multitude of conflicting messages.
Your job right now is to find the top 20% of your marketplace and engage with them.
“The person who chases two rabbits catches neither.”
Step Four – Create an offer that serves your clients right now … as well as in the near future.
If you feel you want to make a lower than a normally priced offer, then create a programme or service that reflects that price. It may be that what your clients want is a quick-fix, short term solution to help them through the next few weeks. It may be that they need help to play the long game and they need a virtual or digital programme to support them, little and often.
Come back to the purpose of making your offer and whether you need to make sales right now, or whether you need to take time out to review, assess and plan for your future.
If you are like many of the clients that I work with, you run a low-cost business that sells your expertise, talents or skills in some form or other. You may have a small team, and although you probably aren’t one of the many thousands of businesses who will be able to take advantage of the Government’s funding and assistance in the coming months, you will be agile enough to not only adapt but to grow in the future.
A previous business mentor of mine taught me that money loves speed. However, I’ve come to believe, now more than ever, that the power is in the pause.
Create the space to let our current situation settle.
Take the time to feel into your next move.
Until next time, do less, be more, play bigger.
About the author
Karen Skidmore is a business mentor with 25+ years of experience, specialising in True Profit™; the design & growth of purposeful, profitable businesses. Business Books Awards finalist 2020 & podcaster, Karen uniquely combines the being-ness and doing-ness of business to help scale up, without burning out.
The first step in discovering the True Profit in your business is to take the True Profit Test.