It's time for another HoopMama Talk.
We just finished a week where people spent a lot of money for Black Friday shopping and will continue to spend as Christmas gets closer. Here's what is about to happen and you may be seeing some of it happen already. People are budgeting, they're watching their money and trying to stretch their pennies.
Here's some do's and don'ts for some common situations you'll see a lot, especially in the next few weeks.
Let me introduce you to Betty Budgeter. Betty wants something for her kids for Christmas and asks you for a quote. You tell her $35. She in return says "can you do $20?" You want the sale, but realize you're not in the lowball business. But you're stuck with how to reply.
DON'T: DO NOT APOLOGIZE for your pricing! I see so many posts "I'm so sorry, I can't go to $20 but I can do $25?" NOOOOOOOOO!!!! STOP!!!! I ask Target all the time to lower my total before check out and I don't get anything! (Kidding, I don't ask...I just wish it wasn't as high) In fact, it's on me to use coupons, shop smart, and to use my Target Red Card for my 5% off.
DO: Without taking it personally reply calmly with, "At this time, I do not have any current promotions. However, if you allow me to sign you up for my e-mail list, I do send out a 5% (or whatever you choose) coupon code for first time customers! Would you like me to sign you up?" (End your sentence with a question that moves you FORWARD to an end result. Otherwise, you'll be going in circles with her) If she asks you again if you could do $25, do not budge. Reply with, "as I mentioned, I do not have any promotions at this time. Would you like me to sign you up for the newsletter?" Usually 2 times will give them enough of a feel for if you will budge or not.
If Betty says "but it's just a a wal-mart t-shirt, I can make this myself"
DO NOT: Break down your pricing about what you pay for what! I see so many posts where the ladies go "I know but I have to buy the shirt, that's $5, then I have to buy the vinyl/thread, that's another $6, plus the design, that's $4, plus I have to drive out to Armadillo, TX to get it which is $27 in gas, so I'm actually losing money doing this *sad face sad face.*" STAHHHHP!!!! When I read these I cringe! If you're doing this as a business, OWN your pricing. You decided on it for a reason. If you don't stand firm in it, you will always get "runned-over"
DO: Reply again calmly with "I understand that the pricing is not something that works for your budget right now. I do stand behind the quality and craftsmanship of my items and I'm positive you will be happy with the final product. If it does not work for you right now, please remember me in the future"
If Betty uses the "so-and-so is selling this same thing for $12" ridiculousness...
DON'T: Talk bad about the so-and-so. Don't go on and on about how they use poor products and people complain all the time about them. Just don't. Speaking bad about someone else reflects poorly on your character. It's best to avoid this at all costs.
DO: Reply with your benefits rather than their downfalls. "I understand my pricing may not fit in everyone's budget. I do use the highest quality materials on the market to ensure a product that will last for more than one use. My return customers say that they love my products because of the quality of craftsmanship and detail. I understand that there are other businesses who sell similar items to me, but I will stand behind my products 100% and I would love create this for you. If you would like to move forward with me, I am positive you will love the final product."
Betty is pretty gutsy and she may even say "fine, my daughter has a "cricket" I'll just have her make it. Where did you get the shirt?"
DO NOT: Cuss her out. :)
DO: While blocking or just ignoring is what you want to do, remember... her "daughter with a cricket" doesn't have a Cricut, she's just pinned a lot of things on Pinterest. Once again reply professionally with a simple response that clearly shows you are not a teacher/tutor or advisor. A simple "Thank you for your interest in my shop, if you need to purchase from me in the future, please let me know :)"
If you are doing this as a business, remember who the boss is and who makes the rules. You set the tone for the customers you attract. If you make your prices "work for everyone" then you aren't really targeting your business. Betty may not be your ideal client. Betty may be someone who needs to save for your product. This whole situation is a reflection of BETTY, not you! Tiffany's doesn't apologize that I can't afford their 27 karat necklace. If it's something I wanted enough, I would work hard and save to make it happen.
Keep that in mind and make sure you are marketing to your ideal client.
NOW, I know a lot of you DO like to help out people and make things work for their budget. This is where you can use the "if you sign up for my newsletter, I can offer you x% off"
This gets their information in your customers list to market to for future products, sales, and promotions. You NEEEEEEEED an e-mail list! Betty may be out of money in December, but in April she will remember that you are firm in your pricing, and she will use her tax return money to splurge in your shop.
In summary: Don't apologize, or explain yourself. Be you. Grow YOUR business and don't worry about the "other guy." YOU DO YOU!!!!
This concludes today's HoopMama Talk.
Where do you start with a newsletter?: Mail Chimp is who I use for mine and they're FREE for up to 2000 subscribers!- (AFIL link) http://eepurl.com/cmc14X