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Show Me The Money

Black Friday, the post-Thanksgiving, retail discounting day, is nearly upon us.  Another American tradition that seems to have taken the retail sector by storm – advertising tantalising discounts trying to encourage us all to bag a bargain.  This led me to think about the part of the sales process when you need to talk about money. Talking confidently about money and the ability to value your product or service, without feeling you should offer a discount, is a key skill and one that many business owners, often tell me, they feel nervous and awkward about.

Here are my 5 Top Tips, for those of you who lack confidence when talking about money:

  1.  Plan and prepare the talking money stage of the sales process.  Work out 3 price positions:
  • Best Price – this is the price that you present to the client at the outset. This price should be realistically ambitious.
  • Good Price – the price that you would be happy ending up with.
  • Acceptable Price – this price is, as it says, acceptable. It is one, that if you end up at this price position you won’t feel resentful about, but more importantly will be a price which still works for you as a business!

2.  People often think their customer will blow a fuse when asking for a price increase.  My advice would be to show belief in the value of the work you do, set a realistically ambitious price which reflects the time and effort for the work done or product provided.  However, be prepared to say no to unreasonable client price demands and walk away where and when appropriate. Don’t undervalue your contribution to the customer!

3. The language you use when proposing your price is important.  Be clear, succinct and confident when giving a price for the work / product. Weak language such as “would it be ok if the price were, I’m thinking the price is, I hope this is ok but it’s going to cost.” These phrases show the client you are not confident about the price you are asking for. Get rid of the weak language and be confident and positive when outlining the price

4.  Make sure you understand how your product / service is helping your customer’s business.  Is your solution:

  • helping them make money
  • saving them money
  • helping them to grow their business
  • helping them to mitigate risk.

If your product/ solution is helping them achieve any of these four core business needs then you are offering vital business value which is another reason to feel confident about the price you are proposing.

5.  Think about what else, other than price, the customer will value so that you have some additional variables to negotiate with.  It’s often not only about price even if the customer makes this the focus of the negotiation, so put yourself in the client’s shoes and identify what else would be useful for them.

Good luck with the money talk and as Tom Cruise and Cuba Gooding said in the film Jerry Maguire don’t be afraid to ask your customer to Show me the Money!

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