Upload & Sell: On
So, to try and take this thing back on topic a bit as most will feel I've gone off tangent ... and off the deep end.
A quick look at the poll (currently @ 33-0-0)
regarding opinion that salesmanship is / is not valuable reveals 100% of respondents saying "Yes", with no respondents replying with "No" or "Never thought about it."
I'd suggest this is rather compelling insight into the matter that ought to be considered seriously for anyone in the business of business, or hoping to be so. Logic would dictate that "only a fool" (according to others) would not heed such tantamount objectivity ... yet, it isn't just about logic, and people will forgo even the most ardent logic, if it doesn't strike them emotionally, or strikes them with a negative emotional bias for some illogical/irrational reason. Some may simply walk away from even your best presentation, for reasons you may never fully understand.
The perspective from the OP was for that of an upstart. Most all of us have been there (or are lurkers wanting to take the plunge to be there) and it seems to be that the most prevalent question that comes from upstart(s) is about "How to SET your pricing?" To that I would suggest that a somewhat different and potentially more prevalent question needs to accompany it ...
"How to GET your pricing?"
Imo, "setting" your pricing and "getting" your pricing are dependent on more than just the market and the consumer/client. To my way of thinking, being focused solely on setting your pricing without giving any credence to how you are able to improve your ability to "get" your pricing is leaving much to chance and/or the market forces around you. The more you are able to influence your ability to "get" your pricing, the more you are in control of your destiny.
That's not to say that we can all just place a $1,000,000,000 price tag on our work and necessarily "get" it. But, I do believe that there is a significant amount of hyperfocus on setting a low enough price (upstarts in particular) to garner business, without giving sufficient credence to focusing on how to GET the RIGHT price. Imo, salesmanship / negotiation skills come into play here and far too many people fail to strive to advance their skills in this area ... often times mistaking that more $$$ @ marketing will take care of things. (Btw, +1 @ value of marketing, but it doesn't improve your salesmanship skills, even if it does increase the volume of your prospects.)
For many, many people ... it is MUCH EASIER to learn a new photography or software technique, or it is MUCH EASIER to lower your price, or MUCH EASIER to toss $$$ at marketing ... than it is to learn, practice and hone your salesmanship/negotiating skills that can help you secure more clients and/or secure the RIGHT price when others (prospects/clients/competition) are striving to get you to agree to a WRONG price. For those who are consistently struggling to get their price, it might be part of the equation they need to give more consideration to.
Some folks have a very negative connotation regarding salesmanship/negotiation and think it to be such an evil thing they avoid it like the plague. Much of this comes from the likes of the character portrayed by Mr. Baldwin in the ABC vid. But whether you view salesmanship as an offensive or defensive aspect of your transactions, the reality is that unless you are in an application that has a SET pricing structure, it's all negotiable.
Even in a "take it or leave it" structure, the ability to sell someone on the "take it" can make a significant difference. Imo, most people that toss out the "take or leave it" are either:
A) Not wanting to put forth the effort (or don't know how) to engage the necessary salesmanship to convert the prospect to a customer, or
B) Are employing it as a closing technique. Well-timed, it can be very effective. Ill-timed, not so much. Knowing the difference ... can make all the difference.
If you have ever employed (or had it employed upon you !!!) "take it or leave it" and don't understand why you did, or when you did, then it might be worth evaluating. Thus, it behooves us to at least give some credence to the degree of skill we have in salesmanship/negotiations impacting our overall profitability.
"How to SET your price."
"How to GET your price."
Sure, you may still negotiate or accept a lower offer than you started with for different clients. But, imo, the first one kinda needs the abilities of the second one ... otherwise you are at risk to just keep lowering your price till you run yourself out of business through price erosion. It is a common thought that if a person isn't getting the price they set, then the price must be wrong, and the "lowering" begins. If there is a problem getting the right price, then re-setting to a wrong price may not be the real answer to the problem.
If we don't have the ability to get/protect our right price from being lowered, what makes it any different for a new lower price. Will we be able to protect it from going even lower? If we can't "sell" our position (whatever it is), then aren't we really being "sold" on their position instead of ours ... hmmm?
There will ALWAYS be someone out there willing to do it for less than you. If you are going to compete with THEIR price (oh gee, some will do it for free @ photo credit) ... how will you stop the price erosion slide to nothingness if you don't improve your salesmanship ability to "GET" your price or secure a client at any price?
Apologies for the 1000+ words (again) ... so I'll summarize as this:
"How to SET your price." is not the same thing as "How to GET your price."
You have to be skilled in both, complacent in neither ... relative to your talent(s) and your market.
HTH ... someone
Edited on May 24, 2013 at 09:16 PM · View previous versions