Hi All, Ant here!
So this is a version of a conversation with a prospect that highlights why I never offer "discounts" on my services but will instead offer value. A few things have been taken out (including them implying I was only in it for the money) and it's a bit long but it also might resonate with some of you and help you find the courage to say no.
Prospect - "How much cheaper can we do this?"
Ant - "By "cheaper" what do you mean?"
Prospect - "Like if we did (ABC) and you JUST do (D), how much can the price come down?"
Ant - "Well you see (D) is actually 90% of the work."
Prospect - "Oh... really?"
Ant - "Yes. It takes the most time, the most effort and utilizes most of my expertise."
Prospect - "But it's just (D). Don't you just Google most of it and copy paste?"
Ant - "No, not at all. Look I'm not sure I'm a fit for your business as my time and skills are not something I am willing to discount."
Prospect - "So what. Because I won't pay you want you want, I'm not your ideal customer?"
Ant - "Yes."
Prospect - "...."
Ant - "Are you ok?"
Prospect - "Yeah... I just thought you'd drop your price to be honest. Since business is tough at the moment."
Ant - "Without sounding condescending, let me tell you why I'm not taking you on as client by asking you a question. If I had no money, but REALLY wanted your product, would you give it to me for free?"
Prospect - "No. I'm not running a charity."
Ant - "But business is tough."
Prospect - "I don't get it."
Ant - "That's part of the problem. The other part is that you don't value my time or my services. If you did, you might still want to look at ways to save money but you wouldn't just assume you know what it takes to do what I do and then reductively decide that if I do what you think is the easiest part, which is actually the hardest, I should smile and accept one third of what I would normally charge as fair payment."
Prospect - "So you'd rather no sale than to take me on under my terms."
Ant - "Yes. Because your terms don't have my interests in mind and don't result in a WIN/WIN."
Prospect - "..."
Ant - "Let me pay for the coffee. I can see you're a little shocked. Think of it as my apology for my brutal honesty."
Now this might seem harsh or as they put it "arrogant" but if you value your time and your skills/expertise, you shouldn't accept being haggled down simply because someone doesn't want to pay what you charge.
As small business owners, we make up a massive portion of the economy (especially here in WA) and provide jobs and support for many Australians. We cannot grow our businesses if we are constantly bowing to pressure to drop prices and do more for less.
Saying no to a sale that isn't a WIN/WIN ultimately is the best thing for both sides and if you have the courage to do it, you will have better clients, a better business and much less stress in you life.
Stay Awesome guys!