Do you struggle with pricing your work? Unsure about how much to charge for different jobs or time frames? You’re not alone, it’s one of the most complicated parts of establishing yourself as a business, but as long as you do your research you’ll find a price range that suits both you and your customer best.
It’s tricky when deciding to put a price on your products and services, because essentially something is only worth as much as someone is willing to pay, which is why you really need to know your own worth, how much it’s actually going to cost you to offer the product and who your target market is inside out from the very beginning. The sooner you know who your customers are and how much they’re going to be willing to pay for what you’re offering, and the more you understand about yourself and your work, the better as it will make the pricing process a whole lot easier.
So firstly, think long and hard about your customers – who are they? Are they students, or more high-end clients? What social media platforms do they hang out on? Where can you find them? What are they interested in? What do they consider their priorities? Once you’ve figured these points out it’ll really help you to understand the people that you want to market to and where to find them to do so, so that you can target them specifically rather than just shouting into the void and hoping that your ideal customer finds you.
Once you have a good idea of who your customers are, then you can start to think about how much money they will be willing to pay for your products and services. For instance, if you’re targeting more high-end corporate clients, they have set budgets but they’re going to be expecting to pay more for what you’re offering, as they equate high prices to a higher quality of work. You need to be careful with this type of crowd that you don’t price yourself too low, as you’re in danger of pricing yourself out of a job. If you’re priced much lower than the other offers they’re going to be receiving for the same job there’s a good chance that they’ll go with somebody more in the middle of the price spectrum, because the price will have that psychological impact on them saying that this is of a certain quality, or a certain experience level.
Or are your customers students? If so, you need to be thinking about how much money they actually have and more importantly, what they’re willing to spend the money that they do have on.
A student for instance may not have a crazy amount of money, but they are willing to spend pretty much every penny that they earn, but on what? A student will complain that they cannot afford to rent a studio space, or to buy a new piece of equipment that they need in order to do their photography, but they have no trouble whatsoever paying the £20 cover fee for the nightclub that’s really cool that everyone’s going to, and while they’re there spending £100 on beer. You need to understand their priorities and how to tap into what they’re interested in, in order to really look attractive to them and convince them that your products and services are worth their money.
When you really understand your ideal target market, not only do you understand how to price it in order to attract the right type of customer, but it will also give you some insight into other products and services that you can offer to them, as well as where you can find these people in order to market to them.
Secondly, you need to get to grips with your level of experience in your field and give yourself an
an honest assessment of where your portfolio sits in conjunction with the people that you’re going to be competing against for all of these jobs. Take a close look at all of your personal skills and experience, as well as your ability to market yourself, as these are the things that are going to set you apart from your competitors, and if you feel that you can improve in any of these areas then really concentrate on strengthening those. The more you understand about yourself as a business and your customers down to the finest details, then the better you’re going to be able to sell to them, and the better you’re going to be able to price yourself.
Don’t be afraid to also adjust your prices when you feel it’s best suited. As a business you should be constantly assessing your performance and adjusting elements that aren’t working as you’d hoped or further improving the areas in which you have strengths. You should be looking closely at the information that you collect over a period of time and using that to shape your business plan for the future. For instance, if you’re not getting enough bookings, maybe you should look at adjusting the price, or targeting your customers in a different way. You need to be keeping a close eye on your sales, and asking yourself if you got a sale, where did it come from? How much did it cost? Why did you get this particular sale? If you’re not getting sales, why aren’t you getting sales?
At the risk of repeating ourselves, it all comes back around to knowing your customer completely and being able to put yourself in their shoes to see why or why they’re not buying your product, so that you can use that information for the future. The more you know, the more information you have, the better your pricing strategy will become. Of course all this will take time, but it’s time that will be really valuable to you in the long run for both your customers and your overall marketing plan. So get stuck in and get to work researching your customers!
Pricing your work is a very in-depth topic and has many factors that have to be considered before pricing your work. In this video we discuss market position and how it affects your pricing. For more things to consider when costing your products and services check out this video.