Spurred by some great emails and goading about my own pricing from friends and clients, I am really interested in doing a week-long series on my blog in November about pricing for small business.
It is a topic that involves a lot of art and science, and tends to bring up many strong feelings and emotions in new entrepreneurs.
I want to feature perspectives for different types of businesses like consulting, software as well as things like photography, art and hand-made crafts.
Some people I would like to interview are (I haven’t asked them yet, but with this post, the cat is out of the bag):
Havi Brooks from Fluent Self
Mark Silver from Heart of Business
Alan Weiss, known as the Million Dollar Consultant
Kendall Summerhawk who does a lot of work with coaches
Joel Spolsky from Fog Creek Software and the blog Joel on Software
John Jantsch from Duct Tape Marketing
Martha Beck, to talk about the fears and limiting beliefs that affect our pricing choices
My aim is to get a lot of different perspectives that will be useful to a broad range of entrepreneurs. If there is one thing I have learned about pricing, it is that there is no one approach that works for everyone.
Whom do you want to hear from?
What questions do you have about pricing?
I will work on this series and launch it in mid-November.
Thanks for your input!
I’ll throw my hat in the ring as well. I just taught a class on pricing for Molly Gordon, in fact. I specialize in pricing for those in service based businesses– especially those who are in the “helping professions”. I’m a money coach who works with women, by the way. I’ve written two workbooks just on pricing– one on the nuts and bolts and one on all the emotional aspects. It is SUCH an emotional topic! (I packaged all my pricing products up at http://www.ratesettingtoolkit.com) Anyways, let me know if I can help. It’s a great topic and I love learning from everyone else as well!
Uh, I think I’m very late on this one. I second Molly Gordon. She’s got awesome thoughts on pricing on authenticpromotion.com.
.-= Naomi Niles´s last blog ..IttyBiz Site Redesign =-.
I second or third the nomination of Mark Silver. A very important part of his pricing practice is the way it makes you feel. His process makes it literally impossible to present a price that you’re uncomfortable with, impossible for it to feel wrong.
.-= Mark W Schumann´s last blog ..Project Planning: “Can we kill ‘em tomorrow?” =-.
John Jantsch, Mark Silver. That’s my vote and I’m sticking with it.
.-= Zane Safrit´s last blog ..GM’s Unusual Word-of-Mouth Campaign =-.
Hi Pam, this sounds like a great series. I’d like to suggest Ed Gandia from The Wealthy Freelancer who has some useful advice on pricing – http://www.thewealthyfreelancer.com.
Also, Michael Port, author of Book Yourself Solid, could have useful ideas for your readers – http://www.bookyourselfsolid.com.
Look forward to reading the posts.
I agree with glenyse, as Naomi Dunford from IttyBiz would be kinda awesome. Jonathan Fields would also be cool, because I heard (from Naomi actually) that you two in the same room is apparently lots of fun!
I’d also like to humbly nominate myself, because even when you’re dealing with a touchy feely profession like counseling, you still have to handle the business end of it. I’ve been self-employed for 10 months now, and price is a big part of whether or not people get the help they need, especially in this economy.
Either way, I look forward to the upcoming interviews you do.
.-= Jim Valeri´s last blog ..Marketing Psychology: Meet the New Face of Microsoft =-.
Hi Pam – I’d like to second Donovan’s previous recomendation of Ron Baker. here are links to his website……
and his book on pricing, “Pricing on Purpose”
I have started doiong social media/internet marketing management and consulting and we are having a hard time figuring out what to charge for a monthly maintenance plan and a one-time consultation fee.
I was going to suggest Dale Furtwengler, but I see he’s gotten in touch!
His blog has several entries on pricing: http://furtwengler.com/theinvaluableleader/
Molly Gordon has some interesting ideas about pricing.
Oh, that may not have “read” correctly. Ramit Sethi from I Will Teach You to Be Rich and Naomi Dunford from Ittybiz…. 🙂
Ramit and Naomi from Ittybiz.
I’d be happy to send you a complimentary copy of my latest book, Pricing for Profit, released September 9, 2009 by AMACOM in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Italy, France, Germany and the Netherlands.
If you’d find the concepts intriguing enough to include in your November pricing series, I’d be happy to work with you on that. Please let me know where to send the copy. Thanks.
Great idea. It seems like whenever the subject of pricing comes up, people tend to clam up–either because they’re concerned about the appearance of price fixing, or because they don’t want to reveal their own rates and somehow damage their own market. On the other hand, I think some transparency in pricing is incredibly valuable–and unfortunately, when you’re talking about folks who are in business for themselves it is very difficult to find comparable salaries/fee structures. So thanks for poking under the hood here!
I also wanted to mention that Lillie Ammann (a freelance writer/editor) has coincidentally just been conducting a little survey to get at pricing in the realm of editing and writing; if time permits you might want to compare notes. Here’s a link to the survey she’s pulling together: http://lillieammann.com/2009/09/26/freelance-rates-survey/
Last but not least, please please do try to include people who make a living not in the tech world, but by being artists and crafters. I expect there are different conventions surrounding pricing for artists as compared to techs/consultants, but I imagine knowing about the different ways to approach pricing could lead to good cross-pollination of ideas. You probably already know of people you can approach for that perspective but if you’d like contact info for additional artist entrepreneurs, let me know.
.-= Leanne´s last blog ..How do I find a publisher? =-.
Pamela, I’d like to hear from experienced e-book writers and what their advice is on pricing. For example, should you consider giving away for free your first book? What are some effective techniques for getting your e-book ‘out there.’
Two people I suggest are Seth Godin and Darren Rowse. There’s also Leo from Zen Habits.
.-= Jim Taggart´s last blog ..10 Ways to Get Your Staff to Love – and Respect -You =-.
I love the folks already on your list actually. I’d love to find out more from Kendall Summerhawk as well. 🙂
.-= Nathalie Lussier´s last blog ..Healthy Foods vs. Unhealthy Foods =-.
Oh Pam- thank you for including me on the list. And I hope you choose to speak with Tad Hargrave- I did an interview with him on the Pay What You Can approach, and he runs a large and active Facebook group called the Pay What You Can Economy. He’s my brother-of-the-heart in marketing, even though he’s a hippy. 🙂
You can check out the interview I did with him here: http://www.heartofbusiness.com/pay-what-you-can-and-tad-hargrave/
.-= Mark Silver´s last blog ..Moday Heart Stuff #5 =-.
I just want to thank you for using “whom.” 🙂
.-= Catherine Cantieri, Sorted´s last blog ..Informational clutter =-.
Chris Anderson from Wired (best known for his book, The Long tail and just released ‘Free’) offers an entirely different perspective on pricing your product for FREE.
.-= Murali´s last blog ..Floods in Andhra Pradesh : 1.8 M People Affected, Damage at 12,225Cr =-.
Please consider Jason from 37Signals. When everything on internet was free and filled with a gazillion ads, 37Signals charged a Fee to use their software and the world of web applications has changed since then to a subscription based fee. Their mantra of “Charge early and Charge often” became the best business lesson for entrepreneurs. And so was their best known ‘Getting Real’ book.
.-= Murali´s last blog ..Floods in Andhra Pradesh : 1.8 M People Affected, Damage at 12,225Cr =-.
I would say Mark Silver, since I really find him interesting and I am quite inquisitive to know more. This post should have had a poll.
.-= fas´s last blog ..CarAdvice Is Back =-.
Pamela, hello! I would recommend talking to Roy H. Williams, Author of The Wizard of Ads. I’ve benefited greatly from his advice on pricing, and his definition of the word “value” is both simple and brilliant. Can’t wait to read the blog series!
What about R. Preston McAfee. He wrote the book “Competitive Solutions – The Strategist’s Toolkit”. Deals with pricing as well.
Look forward to that. I’d be interested more in knowing how to communicate value (and a related price) for services that sell more on intangibles. Especially in the context of gaining the right price when there are always competitors willing to price lower.
Also, how does one determine the price at which one should walk away from a potential customer? (for businesses based on time alone and not having to factor in production costs).
.-= apu´s last blog ..Becoming Queen =-.
I would be very interested in Sergio’s view of pricing and photo-business in all. I heard about him from you (he was your photographer) and I follow his blog ever since.
ross oscar knight
Thanks for doing this. Please do not let the participants get away with “Well, it varies/depends”. As a starting photographer, I really find it difficult to set prices that I consider to be reasonable without being seen as too inexpensive or cheap. Any solid advice would be greatly appreciated!
I would recommend Ronald Baker if you need a new perspective for the thought industry (law, technology, advertising or accounting). For anyone coming from an workplace that is entrenched in the billable hour, he tackles pricing those industries from a new angle.
I always enjoy Spolsky—he’s got my vote.
.-= Willie Jackson´s last blog ..Google Wave Explained =-.
How about Rob, of SoftwareByRob.com? His type of software (smallish utilities) is more like what I would be selling than Joel’s large enterprise packages.
.-= Jon Peltier´s last blog ..Fill Between XY Chart Series (XY-Area Combo Chart) =-.
I think that both Tim Ferriss and Ramit Sethi would be great because they both test relentlessly and focus on key metrics to determine if a strategy (in this case pricing) is optimal.
.-= Steve Brooks´s last blog ..Typography Tricks to Get Your Resume Read =-.
What about Charlie Hoehn? I don’t know him, but I know of him. He’s helped Ramit Sethi (iwillteachyoutoberich.com) with marketing, so I’m sure he has some good thoughts on pricing.
BTW – I’m very much looking forward to reading some of these people’s thoughts on pricing! Should be interesting.
.-= Nate´s last blog ..A Time Management Lesson: Don’t Search for the ‘Perfect’ Answer =-.
The only things I sell are computer software and eBooks, but I see you have the covered.
I think Dave Navarro (rockyourday.com) would be a perfect candidate. He’s launched products for tons of people and would have some great thoughts on this!
.-= Glen Allsopp´s last blog ..Breaking Free: Challenge Update #1 =-.