Charging What You're Worth ... Is It As Simple As That??
A few months ago I wrote 3 blog posts that focused on this topic:
WHY IS THE PRICING IN THE WEDDING INDUSTRY ALL OVER THE F*CKING PLACE?
If you want a refresher on the posts or if you're not sure you read them, they are linked below:
This morning on FB I saw someone share a post from another person ... haha, don't you just love FB ... that was all about why this person charged XYZ and why people need to just sack up and charge what they want and what they feel they are worth. And I 100% agree ... there is just one problem:
THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN BECAUSE BUSINESS OWNERS ARE PEOPLE
People come with all sorts of sh*t and baggage ... I have it, you have it ... sometimes that baggage makes us stronger and we value ourselves more and sometimes that baggage comes with sh*t that holds us back and makes us devalue ourselves. Now, what happens over time as we grow more confident in our skills??
WE START TO VALUE OURSELVES AS BUSINESS OWNERS
But then what happens when people stop inquiring with us or business gets bad??
WE START TO QUESTION OURSELVES
Being a person, I feel, gets completely disregarded when you attach the words: BUSINESS OWNER to it ... all of a sudden we are supposed to be professional ALL THE TIME, and NEVER HAVE LIFE HAPPEN TO US ... we are supposed to know all the answers and always answer emails on time ... never forget about a task even though it was on our 'to do' list ... it can be and is very draining. Now add on top of all that:
PRICING YOUR SERVICE OR PRODUCT
... and oh boy ... it's nearly impossible to do the 'business owner thing' correctly.
Here's the issue: PRICING IS ALL OVER THE DAMN PLACE and it always will be.
Because new people who are starting out will charge way less ... regardless of if they are awesome or not ... regardless of how many workshops they took or internships they did ... they will charge less. It's just the way it goes ... thus, they could and will probably take clients from the people who have been doing that 'job' for f*cking ever and charge more.
Now, in other industries where clients aren't typically a 'one time fling' ... as we do hope people only have one wedding ... hahahaha ... it may flip if they had a bad experience with a 'new company' and hired them because they were 'cheap' and wanted to save money ... I know I've fallen victim to 'saving money' and hiring the cheaper option ... usually I regret that decision, but I've certainly done it. In those instances, the industry can thrive because people will stop using the cheap company and move to a more experienced one ... and then, in some cases, the cheaper company will go out of business.
WITH BRIDES AND GROOMS IT'S DIFFERENT ...
Brides and grooms are being thrown all sorts of ridiculous pricing structures ... as I noted in the posts above, the education on pricing comes from all angles and it's VERY CONFUSING ... but, if they choose the WRONG choice and 'regret their decision' that company made the money, grew their portfolio, and are able to say 'b-bye' to that client (in most cases forever...) ... the client may not be happy, they may write a bad review, but they are off enjoying their marriage (we hope) and that other company can move onto the next wedding ...
HEATHER, BAD REVIEWS WILL CATCH UP TO THEM
Totally ... in the cases where there are SO MANY bad reviews online about a company, it will definitely turn on them and they can end up in a whole lotta trouble ... but how many of 'these companies' are out there are local to all of us? Which is why:
PRICING IN THE WEDDING INDUSTRY SUCKS
I wrote a post about taking the pride out of your pricing and it's definitely worth a read if you are feeling stuck on this topic.
Look, I don't have all the answers about pricing, but I do know that it's not as simple as: JUST START CHARGING WHAT YOU'RE WORTH ... to say that to someone, especially when you are coming from a place of doing just that, isn't helpful. Trying to navigate through the waters of starting a business and then attaching a PRICE to your service when there is literally ZERO INFORMATION that makes any sense out there is impossible.
Just a few weeks ago I got a bullsh*t email from The Knot that said:
$1595 PHOTOGRAPHY PACKAGE - 7 HOURS PLUS A FREE SECOND SHOOTER - FREE ENGAGEMENT SESSION
Are you freaking kidding me!!??? No wonder brides can't figure it out ... no wonder we can't figure it out ... and The Knot isn't the only one pulling that kind of crap ... some publications (for those editors who love to slam me for being ALL INCLUSIVE ... notice that I just said SOME) love to play the game of:
IF SOMEONE WANTS TO ADVERTISE IT, WE'LL TAKE THEIR MONEY AND PUMP IT OUT
... which puts us all in the position of: LET'S JUST THROW NOODLES AT THE WALL AND SEE WHAT STICKS ... sh*tty, yes?
I get the gist of the message from: CHARGE WHAT YOU FEEL YOU ARE WORTH ... really, I do ... I tell my clients that all the time! But it's answering that question amongst all the crappy pricing out there and misleading education by publications and wedding planners that makes it nearly impossible to decide what the f*ck that is.
Dude, how many times did I say f*ck in this post???