Greetings from SC!
I had an experience last night I wanted to share with you! Let me give you a little background first.
One of the biggest struggles that I am seeing right now, is the struggle around pricing services. I see peers and clients battling themselves when it comes to this topic. They have real insecurity about what to charge for things and so they fall into a couple of categories.
- They undercharge out of guilt, insecurity, and yes sometimes lack of strategy.
- They charge a fair price for a service and then they bombard the offer with extras and bonuses to try cajole the client into clicking buy now button.
- They set their pricing, have a clear description of what the client gets, and then something bizarre happens! They start to give too much, they renegotiate the terms of the transaction without the client’s request or desire. The seller believes that this is a GOOD thing and they feel that the client should be happy, about getting more, but something else actually happens.
Let me tell you a story that I find fits perfectly into this scenario.
This weekend I am in Charleston for a sisters trip with my two sisters. We did something that many tourists do, we signed up for a ghost tour. It was a pretty simple thing to do no big deal. We did a little research, we found the company we wanted to use, read the description of what we were getting for our money and we booked it.
We were happy with our choice and ready to get started. Our tour guide was peppy and very knowledgeable and excited about our tour. About 30 minutes into our 1.5 tour things began to go sideways ( did the theme for Gilligan’s Island just pop into your head like it did in mine?) I digress.
About 30 minutes into our ghost tour our guide began to tell us stories and act out the parts. I am sure that he thought that he was a riot and was putting on a big show but frankly it was uncomfortable and it made the stories 2x as long.
At about 1 hour and 15 mins into our 130 hour tour he realizes that he has not gotten us as far into our tour as he is supposed to do. Nary a graveyard or haunted house had been experienced yet. As you can imagine people were yawning, pulling out their phones and by the time we reached the graveyard our 1.5 tour should have been over.
Alas, it was not. He kept talking and sharing more stories, and walking to more locations.
At almost 2 hours and 15 mins we thought we were done, but nope we were not. The guide proudly decided to give us one more amazing bonus and started pulling out pictures of orbs. At this point, we needed a restroom, and frankly, a cocktail would have been fabulous. We were no longer willing to stand their politely so we slipped away.
Picture of orbs would have been amazing an hour earlier, at that moment not so much.
Let’s break this down.
- We were the clients. We happily paid the fee for what was detailed in the brochure.
- We jumped in with enthusiasm.
- The guide disconnected from us and gave what he thought we wanted rather than asking us what we needed.
- He re-negotiated the terms of the transaction without asking us because HE thought he was giving us more value. A longer tour = better right? Nope
- We disconnected from the transaction, eloped from the tour, he missed out on a tip and we would be reluctant to use that company again.
Have you been tempted to do this for your clients?
You have gotten all of the details, expectations, and perimeters outline for your client. Your client willingly pays your price, and then something happens. You experience guilt, you start to worry, your inner critic starts to question you and you begin to give your clients things that they did not ask for so YOU feel better.
Here is why you should NOT follow these impulses!
- Going over on sessions because you want to do more for the client is not always helpful or what they asked for.
- Not honoring the time allotted for the exchange of services without it being outlined in the agreement is out of integrity.
- Trust your clients to know what they want and to be happy to get what they paid for.
- Throwing in extra things seems generous but it actually can create more work for your client that they did not ask for.
Are you picking up what I am laying down here? GIVE THEM WHAT THEY PAID FOR!
Trust the relationship and the transaction!
If you have trouble adhering to it then that means that you have some work to do. You are being motivated by guilt, ego, insecurity or comparison syndrome, Your clients are smart and they will know and this will erode their trust in you.
All we wanted was a 1.5 ghost tour a few scary stories and a trip to the graveyard. We got so much more than that and left feeling very disappointed and guilty for bailing.
Give them what they paid for and if more is needed, renegotiate the terms.
If you see yourself in this story there is no shame in this game! You need to retrain your brain to look at these situations with different eyes and manage the impulse to do too much differently. Apply for a call with me and let’s see what needs to be shifted for you to feel good about doing just enough.