How To Know When You Can Raise Your Prices:
Part 3: Growing A Boutique Business
As service professionals we have an obligation to our clients to give them great value for the fees they pay us for our services. The more value a client receives, the more likely they are to be a great client. Successful clients and successful service providers together avoid the pitfalls of creating clients who just want to vent with no motivation to grow and move forward…YUK…that’s just painful for everyone!
Successful clients become a shining testimony for the value of your services. And that is a value people pay the BIG BUCKS for!
“I’m booked! Would you like me to put you on my waiting list?”
Those are the words every coach, and service professional would like to say. For the prospective client, those words must mean “This coach must help their clients get results, or they wouldn’t have a waiting list.”
Does it really mean you give value to your clients? Possibly, but it might also mean you have the cheapest deal. There is a delicate balance to consider when determining the value of your service and what is acceptable to charge clients.
Which Business Model Do You Employ?
If your clients are always price checking and comparing you and your services, you might have a “Big Box Discount Store” model for business. If your clients are looking for quality and service and are happy with the value of your prices, you might have a “Boutique” model for business. With the boutique model your reputation and value are what speak first to potential clients. They are willing to pay for the value, and they are confident they will receive it.
I want a BOUTIQUE business!
Building your business model on the “Boutique” principle will profit not only your wallet, but also your confidence as a professional who is highly sought after. Your clients will tell you what kind of value you give them. Listen to what they say to you and about you.
When your clients tell you they are gaining from being associated with you and your service, they are essentially telling you that your prices are not out of line. I recently received an email from a client quoting something from his journal of our coaching appointment. He said, “We had one call a while ago that I got so much out of that I’m still processing and taking it in — damn I must have a great coach!!! :)”
It isn’t an automatic assumption you can raise your prices. Raising prices requires a strategy. I build small increases into additional services and packages, and recommend you steer clear of notifications to your current satisfied clients that you are raising their fees. Instead, notify them of price increases due to the additional services and packages, but because of their loyalty and commitment theirs will remain at the original prices. Existing clients deserve to be rewarded, not penalized with higher prices!
EVERYONE wants to work with successful people!
The level of preparedness of your clients when you meet tells you how much they value your services. Actions speak louder than words in this case! Being prepared tells you they care and want to move forward. It is a lot more fun to work with successful people who follow through on their commitments. The positive energy you bring along with the positive energy your clients bring to the relationship will create an environment of success for everyone involved.
Creating this SUCCESS ENVIRONMENT does two things:
- It keeps them looking forward to your appointments and
- It insures they will show up for appointments…an occasional unforeseen circumstance may happen, but it will be rare.
Creating a success environment in your appointments builds the case for the value of your services. This doesn’t mean “raise your prices!” After all, people are like Pavlov’s dog in a sense; reward them for good behavior and they will want to do good. Punish them for good behavior, and they will stop. Raising prices might feel like punishment. Reward a great client by honoring the prices you established with them. It is however, okay to explain you are raising your fees due to increased offers and value, but honoring their current rates.
Having this conversation with your best clients will do several things:
- Let’s them know how much you value them.
- Builds loyalty.
- Helps them understand price differences when they refer a friend.
- They may even want to opt in to your new offers and pay the higher price.
It is also okay to raise your fees when a client leaves or takes a break from your services then comes back. Simply explain, since you last worked with them, your business has evolved to better serve them with new and valuable services. Most clients understand and will pay the increase because they know first hand the value they will receive is well worth it. (It may also help them conclude they shouldn’t leave again!)
Having a successful relationship with your clients is the foundation for growing a Boutique Business. These types of clients come to you for the value you provide them, and price is simply a byproduct of what they know and understand it costs to work with you. Success environments create positive energetic experiences where value is the focus–not the price you charge!
Now Its Your Turn
Let’s create a community of service professionals who WOW our clients with a Boutique experience!
Share ways you create value in your business for your clients.