Business Building: 1 More Reason To Charge For Your Services
Of course, there’s the most obvious reason we charge for our services; if we gave everything away for free, we'd go out of business. Free services are not great for business building
Here’s one more reason not to give away your services for free when you're business building; there’s little to no value in the mind of the person receiving your services when they don’t have to pay for it.
While working with a Selling Break-Through VIP Client, we were discussing what’s happening when she’s giving her expertise away for free and “hoping” to get referrals in return.
One situation, in particular, brought home the concept I’ve been coaching her on.
My client, Lucy*, was asked to give free help to someone she met recently. The woman wanting the help is well connected in her community and has the potential to refer a ton of business to Lucy. The free help she’s looking for from Lucy normally cost over $500. Lucy agreed to waive the majority of her fee in return for introductions and referrals. Lucy also asked the woman to cover the $50 meeting room fee. To learn what Lucy teaches, the private meeting room is essential. The $50 fee comes out of Lucy’s pocket, so the request was more than reasonable.
The woman’s response to the $50 cost was she didn't want to spend that much and offered to buy Lucy a cup of coffee instead.
What kind of referral could this woman possibly give when she doesn’t see the value of what’s being offered to her. She’s already demonstrated she thinks Lucy’s service is only worth the cost of a cup of coffee.
The Savvy Sales Tip for you this week: People rarely value what they receive for free and are much less likely to refer business as a result.
Here’s why. Since they didn’t pay you for your services, there’s less of a commitment to implement or use what you offered. When asked about working with you, they don’t have any results to share with potential referrals.
Think back to the best referrals you’ve received. Did they come from paying clients or from people who received your services for free?
Now there may be one or two exceptions to the rule, and yet, the rule is people who pay for your services assign a much higher value and are more likely to take action on what they learn. Therefore, paying clients can give much better referrals. They’ve experienced the benefits of your work because they themselves did the work necessary to implement what they learned.
The concept of charging for your services is one I struggled with when I started Sales Maven in 2013. At times it felt easier to give people sales coaching for free and hope they understood the long-term value and would then refer clients.
I realize now; the very best referrals come from my highest paying clients.
Since they paid for my services, they take my advice and coaching more seriously.
They take action, and as a result, their sales grow. People around them take notice of the change and ask what they’re doing differently. When my clients share they’re working with Sales Maven, their associates now want to work with me as well. It’s a win/win for all involved. THAT is business building at it's finest.
Please catch yourself the next time you feel compelled to give away your services for free in hopes of getting a referral in return. You may find charging someone will have a greater impact on their life and result in more referrals for your business.
Wishing you continued success in all you’re doing.
*Lucy is not my client’s real name. Out of respect for my clients, I do not reveal their real names when sharing teaching stories.
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