When viewed purely in the context of sales, price is just a barrier, a challenge, a frustration that the buyers are either prepared to tolerate, or they aren’t.

But in the context of strategy, a price can do so much more.

A price can:

  • signal a friendly disposition
  • convey a high degree of confidence, and therefore infer competence
  • be intended as a shock that pushes away “clients” that are here to “kick tires” and waste time
  • lead the client into comparing you with the right competitors, rather than the wrong ones

Also, when displayed with other pricing options, a price can communicate clearly which is the frugal option, the best buy, and the all-in option.

Depending on the mode of calculating value, it can also signal the different risk profiles of different pricing options. For example, in a time-and-materials arrangement, the client takes the risk of the project going over budget, while in a per-project option, you take that risk.

Within the right context, your price can speak volumes about convenience, and risk, along with the effect on the client’s ego. It can also help you soothe, intimidate, stand out, fit in, signal empathy, or assert authority even with no accompanying text.

There is no way to avoid sending a message with your pricing. Becoming aware that it really is a core part of your message is the first step toward having some influence over what it says.


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