Pricing Strategies during a Pandemic
As many of us are connecting over video and spending our weekend evenings quizzing with friends and family, we get to glimpse a quieter mind. Or at least, a fortunate few do.
As our quiz came to an end last night, a few of us stayed online, chatting lightly and laughing heartily. It was medicine!
We reflected on our various situations and circumstances and for two of my friends, a business opportunity was created from an off the cuff remark. It was indeed, remarkable to witness. It prompted a question from them to me; Why haven’t I dropped my prices during COVID 19 when so many have and is this preventing me from getting work?
In short, I made a decision at the beginning of lockdown to not drop my prices. My pricing strategy wasn’t something that was plucked from thin air, rather, it’s well considered and thought out and arose naturally over the years as my skills improved and my overheads changed. Yes, there are lots of businesses offering their services for a much reduced cost. I have no idea whether that’s a good strategy for them or not. I just know for me, to offer what is a premium service at a price that doesn’t allow me to manoeuvre in my business and life, would not be a good decision.
Furthermore, Thrive & Shine only undertakes work that really matters, to people it really matters to and that has less to do with monetary cost, per se. My time is never going to be cashed in, given back or refunded and neither is that of my clients. Their time is priceless too! As is their life, the businesses they run, the people they serve and that of their employees too. In fact, I’ve had the value of life displayed right before me once more and I know it cannot be measured in money. There is not enough money in the world to pay you for your time or me for mine. So, really, the only decision to make is this; how much am I prepared to give away to those who won’t really utilise the skills, knowledge and expertise that I gift to them? My answer was none. But, I did want to give away some of my time to those who wouldn’t ordinarily access my services but to whom I knew they would be helpful, valuable and beneficial. That has been and continues to be my contribution.
I have coached and supported distressed frontline NHS workers, parents, business leaders, teachers and welders. I have spoken to children, a police officer, other coaches and consultants and a publican and helped them through a particularly stressful event. In other words, Thrive & Shine pivoted in order to help those who wouldn’t ordinarily be our clients because I really wanted to gift to them, the capacity for calm and ease. This work has been truly beautiful.
I’ve gained so much more than money from these transactions. I’ve gained clarity, hope, a deeper sense of integrity and love, so much love. By harnessing the power of gifting, I’ve been gifted the intangible qualities of life that cannot be paid for.
In my business, my pricing strategy is simpler than most; if it cannot be sold for the true value of my time and effort, it cannot be given away for free either. What this means is that no matter the financial implication for any transaction, if it’s not being received as truly valuable, it’s not something that I want to gift. It means that I work with the leaders who will truly get value from what we do together and whilst acting as a safeguard for me; is what I am offering, something that will lead to the desired result being sought? If the answer is no, whether it’s paid for or offered as a gift, it’s of little or no value and a waste of my time and effort. It is important to me that what I put out into the world is impactful, useful, meaningful and if it isn’t, what am I wasting my most precious resource on it for?
Why am I sharing this with you? Well, my friends had never heard of a pricing strategy like it. They were about to price their services based on what they believe people will pay during the current climate until they listened to my version of pricing, so, I thought it might be helpful to gift this way of working to others who are pondering their prices right now. Maybe you’re slashing your prices. Maybe you’re putting your prices up. Maybe you’re stuck wondering what’s the best option for you. If so, consider what you do, the result it gets and how much of your time it takes for you to get that result. Remember that you’re trading those precious hours in. They’ll never be regained and so it’s worth ensuring that you spend them to the best of your ability. Your time is precious. How much money are you prepared to trade in your time for?
There isn’t suddenly less money in the world. There is less money in circulation and so some are having access to less. My gift is for those humans and those who wouldn’t ordinarily pay for my services because they’re mot ordinarily the clients that I serve. I could do this because I’m also getting paid.
So many of us are watching the economic shift and most are considering this a detrimental move into recession. Although that is true, that wealth is being distributed differently, re-prioritised, by slashing prices, this aids the block in the distribution pipeline. Money and wealth still have to move around in order for as many as possible to benefit and live lifestyles where their health and wellbeing aren’t at risk
In essence, as a business leader, your pricing strategy also forms part of your own wellbeing strategy. There isn’t enough money in the world to determine your value. You are priceless. By all means, give your gifts for free where possible, but ensure it really is a gift rather than a compromise. A compromise rarely tastes good to anyone.