How to avoid the conflicting (and often damaging) advice on pricing...

published5 months ago
2 min read

Working out what price you should charge for your services and products can be bewildering and confusing.

However, it doesn't have to be when you understand the underlying principles of pricing to for your business with the handy checklist I'm going to share in this email and stop looking for cookie cutter formulas.

There is a lot of conflicting advice out there.

Some of it good.

Some of it bad.

Much of it with an agenda, or based on what's currently working for the person giving the advice.

What works for one person isn't right for everyone.

Often, the person giving the advice has a very different set of circumstances in their business than you do in yours.

And if you follow the wrong strategy for your pricing it can do a lot of harm.

I literally have seen several businesses go from steadily growing and gaining to zero because the photographer followed advice that was wrong for their business at that particular point in time.

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A checklist for working out your pricing

So how do you work out your pricing?

There are 9 main factors to consider when working out your prices.

Review each one to help you determine what's right for you and your business. And if it feels wrong, change tack.

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1: 💪Your level of skill or expertise and the quality of products that you sell. Would a reasonable number of photos from every client shoot be deemed as indicating a "professional level of competence" where the client "should be pleased with the results" by a professional body or association?

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2: Can you deliver a minimum standard in ALL conditions, even in the most difficult? Have you built up the real-world experience to do that, served your apprenticeship as such?

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3: What stage is your business at? Businesses just starting out have very different needs, priorities and objectives to those who are established and those who are towards the higher end of the market. A photographer might aspire to the top end of the market, but when starting out they have a journey to reach that point.

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4: How much momentum does your business have? How many leads and clients 👨‍👨‍👦‍👦 does the business have each month? Is that number steadily increasing, is it sporadic or is it in freefall?

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5: Do you have the confidence and belief in your abilities, that what you offer is worth the prices you are charging or do your prices scare the crap out of you? I've seen photographers self sabotage and stop marketing because they put their prices up too quickly because that is what they were told they should do, but they had absolutely no belief in their value.

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6: It doesn't matter how brilliant your photography is, if you do not have the ability to market your business at your given price point then it's always going to be a struggle to book enough clients. Your photography alone will not sell itself. And just like you had to develop your photography skills, you have to develop your marketing skills or pay someone competent to do it for you.

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7: Is everything about your client experience and customer service in alignment with or better than the prices you are charging? The more people pay, the better the experience and level of service they expect. This includes having professional and smooth systems that deliver consistent standards of service - from initial enquiry through to delivery of the final products.

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8: What are your current objectives? Is your priority to build momentum? To build your experience and reputation? To be able to cut back on the number of hours you work in your business? To increase your profits? There are many different objectives that you can have for your business. These will evolve and change over time and are important in determining your pricing.

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9: What does it cost you to do business? This is a factor to consider, but using set formulas to determine your pricing based solely on your cost of doing business can do more harm than good. Run a mile from anyone that tells you otherwise. It's a lazy and irresponsible way to advise business owners as it does not take into account many other important factors.

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Hope this helps, let me know your challenges when it comes to pricing in your business - I do reply to every email.
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Louise