If what you're selling is not a commodity, but a complex sale, price should not be the determining factor. I mean, think about it, do your customers spend their time looking to spend their budget dollars just because they can? No. I didn't think so. It's all about value.
Jill Konrath, Selling to Big Companies, told one of her Teleseminar classes recently that sometimes it's best to turn away business that's not right for your company because it doesn't further your strategic goals. Sounds crazy, huh? But this saavy lady knows what she's talking about.
My company has done that several times. Sure, we could've taken the job at a reduced price, but we would've been sorry. Once you discount your way in, you have one heck of a time getting your pricing back in line. Then you end up spending money just to keep that customer happy. And, those customers tend to stay. Hey, why shouldn't they? They're getting the best deal around. Plus, if you're a small company, you can't afford not to keep your promises. Business is a small world and a bad rep is a killer.
Here's an example of the best possible outcome: One of the companies we turned down came back around a year later, still not having solved their problems. The client came on board knowing that the price they paid us would deliver what they needed. Pretty cool, huh?
That makes it doubly important to make sure that all communications, including your Web communications are stressing value, difference and problem solving. Jim Logan talks about the role of Marketing and Sales in pricing over on his blog today and says, "Price can rise in importance though when value, benefits, difference, and reason to believe are left from the discussion."
Don't forget the value of interaction in building the value of what you deliver either. More coming on Web tools that make a big difference to marketing and sales interactions. Because one of marketing's most important customers is the sales department. Stay tuned.