What are your clients really paying for?


Each day I interact with people in the service industry I see this topic come up for discussion – even if they don’t know this is the real question they are asking. Usually it is hidden in the conversation under the guise of how much they are charging, is it worth it, how much time it is taking, feeling guilty because the price is so high…you get the point. So, let’s break this down and really look at it. What exactly are your clients paying you for?

First, they are paying you for your knowledge. This is information you have gained through study, reading, viewing, just being aware. You know something about the project that your buyer does not. But is knowledge enough?  Heck no. I know about pulling a tooth to some degree, but I can promise you that I am not the one you want to visit if you have a toothache.  If knowledge alone isn’t enough – what else do you need?

Experience. Yep, experience matters. (Exactly why I suggest you call the dentist and not me in the above example with the toothache!) Experience is knowledge in action. Quite often knowing when not to do something is just as important as knowing when to do it. Experience is citical. It allows us to work with more precision, better final outcomes, the ability to adjust when necessary, and it can help us work faster.  But alas, knowledge and experience again are not enough.

Time. Time is a currency we spend each and every day. If someone is calling you for your services and they have the knowledge and the experience but no time to implement – time becomes very important in the transaction. It drives me crazy when a client will share with me that a potential buyer tells them they ‘could do the job but don’t have the time’ as if that should make you lower your rates. NO!  You are being hired because you have the time to do the work and that alone is valuable. (Not to mention the knowledge and experience that prompted them to call you in the first place.)

Value is our last element, but certainly not least. Being able to offer a great product or service that is worth the price paid shows the value of what you do. If I know how to do something, have experience and time but do sloppy work – the price will be argued.  This would put me in a terrible position to defend my worth. Conversely, if I have the knowledge and know how to implement (experience) within a given time frame with the best of product/service (value) – then there is nothing to argue about with regard to pricing or worth.

As a business owner – really think about what you have to offer in each of these areas: knowledge, experience, time and value. What are you offering them that they cannot do without you? How are you improving their life?  Charge for that. Own it….and no need to apologize!

If you need assistance with this, consider taking the Pricing Without Emotion course or getting involved in financial coaching with me. I would love to help you! Email me at Michele@ScarletThreadConsulting.com for more info on owning your worth.

Michele WilliamsComment