I see a lot of blogs and Facebook conversations about “earning the income you deserve” and “charging what you’re worth.”
Someone on FB will say, “I raised my prices and one of my clients said I was too expensive for her. I’m heartbroken.”
And then someone else comments, “Oh honey GURL, drop that customer like a hot potato! He/she is NOT your ideal client.”
And then there’s a chorus of “Mmm hmm, preach!” “HUGS! ((( )))” “Tell that nickel-and-diming bargain hunter where to put it!” “Kick her off your subscriber list!” “You should kill her!”
Hold on. What?
I agree we don’t want to cater to cheapos.
And it’s true, if someone doesn’t want to pay your price, then they’re not your ideal client. Your ideal client wants to pay you a hundred times MORE than you charge.
…And, wants to send you first class plane tickets to anywhere in the world, just as a tip. And then wants to gift you 50 million dollars (after taxes) because you’re the first person who really ever “got” her and could have a truly smart conversation about the Real Housewives of NY with her and make her feel alive, and her grown children are ungrateful jerks, so she’d rather give her money to you. But she gives it to you anonymously so you won’t feel obligated. It’s a no-strings-attached gift.
OK, maybe that’s just my ideal client.
My point is, of course your ideal client is someone who wants to pay whatever you decide to charge.
But are you “worth” what you charge? And do you really get to decide that?
What decides it is what people are willing to pay.
If I sell $10 hamburgers and decide, “screw this $10 bullshit, mama needs a Hamptons beach house” and jack up the price to $500 per burger just because “that’s what I’m worth,” who’s going to pay?
If all the burger lovers go across the street where burgers are still 10 bucks, do I say, “Fine, go! You’re not my ideal clients anyway! I wish you e coli –I mean, love and light”?
No. I say, shit, I’d better give them a good reason to pay $500 for a hamburger.
Like, it’ll take you to a Prince concert* and then have sex with you and tell you you have a rockin’ body. Or, it’ll babysit your kids for a month. Or undo all the sun damage from when you were 15 and sunbathed lying in the Caribbean water, the shallow part where it was most reflective, with baby oil on your face and arms.[*UPDATE: Due to sad developments since publish date, Prince concert has added approximately 50 billion dollars of value to said hamburger]
Does your hamburger do that?
In other words, do you have years of experience? A successful track record?
People who’ll vouch for you?
A wait list?
If you’re expensive for no reason other than that you think you “deserve” to be, or don’t do a great job making it clear why you’re worth the price, then good luck finding those “ideal” clients.
[How do you make it clear that you’re worth it? With your copywriting, of course. You can get help with that here.]
You deserve love (I guess). You deserve to be treated with dignity. You deserve those shoes you just bought, since the deed is done and why make you feel guilty about them.
But do you inherently “deserve” a certain amount of money for the thing you do? I say no.
Do you agree? Do you like to “charge what you’re worth”?
TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS.
That is, if you think I deserve comments.