Archive for

How To Decide What To Charge For Your Products And Services

So, you have your business up and running. You have some products and services set up to offer to clients and prospects.

Sometimes this is the part where you might begin to feel a little stuck, because you begin to wonder how to set your prices.

Maybe you have a business where prices are already set, that’s fine because then you don’t have a choice – or maybe it’s bad because you don’t have a choice. More than likely you have a business where you need to really think about what you’re going to charge your clients for what you’re offering.

Now, this might sound a little strange at first, but you’re going to charge whatever you want for the products and services you have. It’s your business – so you can do that. You might be thinking that sounds just a little crazy, but you have the freedom to set your own prices.

Here’s the thing, you can decide to charge prices that are on the high-end, the middle or the low-end of your industry. So, you’ll have a tendency to look at what everybody else in your industry is charging.

For example, if you sell a computer program or software, and it’s similar to what some others are selling, you’ll look at what they’re charging for their software. Then, you’ll more than likely decide whether or not you want to squeeze in with them and be in the midrange, or if you want to try and take all their customers by charging less, or if you want to stand out in the market place and charge more than they’re charging.

You get to make those decisions. There’s nothing wrong with being on the high-end. There’s nothing wrong with being on the low-end. And if you want to be average, if you want to fit in with everyone else, by all means, that’s your choice to do that too.

If you’re going to be on the high-end, you’ll want to decide what sets you apart. What’s the value of what you’re selling over the value your competition is offering?

Value is the key to setting prices in the range you see fit as opposed to feeling like you have to fit in with everyone else. If what you’re selling has less value, or no additional value, than what your competition is selling then you can expect to run into some problems or challenges if you’re trying to sell in a different price range than they are.

Here’s something else, though, it’s your business, and you have the freedom to change your prices. You can test and adjust your prices until you get the results you’re after. That might mean you have to add a bonus or take away a bonus – just keep modifying and changing what you’re offering until you get the results you want.

Your prices will change based on a variety of factors like the economy, current trends, the need for what you have and even your clients. You have clients who will drop thousands of dollars on things and not give it a second thought and you also have clients who won’t spend hardly anything, and everything in between. So you’ll have to test and modify, and test again, until you find the amount your clients are willing to invest.

There’s no perfect formula for setting prices. It’s your business, so you can charge whatever you want. But you do have to be willing to test and modify, and change prices when your business and clients tell you to.

6 Simple Tips to Boost Your Business in 2013

With the New Year making its grand entry into our lives, we make plans and resolutions that go stale as early as the end of the first month. Most business owners shy away even from a new business plan or an effort to bring a positive change in the New Year. They fear that these plans and improvements won’t do any good to their current business strategy but only be an addition to the “time-wasting” chores. However, we seldom realize that without the right plan and changes, we are inviting stagnancy in our business goals.

Revise Your Marketing Plan

Are you planning to fail by failing to plan? Have you started updating your marketing plan for this New Year? Well, you have a choice… either make revisions regularly OR let it go stagnant along with your business.

There is no magic rule for how often you should update your plan but many experts suggest you ‘tweak it’ often. Therefore, it is important to jumpstart the year with a well-crafted strategy in place.

Spruce Up Your Website

Your website reflects your business and is the online face of your brand. Adding more zing and enthusiasm to your website, optimizing its content, adding user-friendly and interactive modules, and changing the look and feel of the website to represent the touch of novelty in your business are always a good idea. Here are 4 additional ideas:

  • Add new images
  • Change the banner
  • Upload a new video
  • Change the template

Take Control of Finances

If your financial plan has gone haywire in the last year, then it is time to pull up your sleeves and gear for strict budgeting this year. Plan your finances in a way that you prioritize the investments, make room for infrastructural improvements and also pitch in with good employee benefit schemes. Everything in between these constitutes your financial planning for this year. However, one still has the “January, February and March” to cash in before the end of the fiscal year.

Outsource Non-Essential Tasks

Rather than worrying about logistics, supply chain, administration and recruitment, it is essential that business owners and top management official learn to delegate non-essential tasks. One can also share responsibility or collaborate with other departments for reallocation of work as per expertise and priority.

Go Social

Today, most of us are using social networks to build relationships with potential customers and current clients. In fact, over 30% of the world’s population is on the internet. Social media increase brand awareness and allow you to connect with people where they hang out at. You no longer have to rely on the age-old modes of communication or indirect marketing.

A Social Presence:

  • Brand Awareness
  • Instant Feedback
  • Global Reach
  • Word of Mouth
  • Easy, Cheap and Great ROI

Expand through Alliance Partnership

When it comes to growing your business, partnering with like-minded entrepreneurs can be very effective.This gives you an instant marketing presence in front of millions of potential clients.

Do you know other companies to whom you share mutual customers with? You should be running, not walking to find who they are and how you can team up and benefit from each other.

Do you know of businesses that complement yours? Make a list of product or services that you don’t offer but that is related to what you do.

To jump-start a partnership:

  • Draft an agreement outlining expectations of the partnership
  • Develop a bond with your new alliance partners
  • Decide how marketing activities will be initiated between partners such as handing out marketing material at various networking functions, exchanging banners and links on websites or share a big marketing project.

By following these 6 simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to a successful and prosperous business in 2013.

Mobile Marketing Via Smartphones – The New Business Mantra

Smartphones are now in almost everyone’s pocket and if you are running a business you need to be aware of and have a presence on the mobile marketing platform. Unlike a laptop or desktop computer or even a tablet or phablet, a smart phone is always on and very easily accessible – you have a virtually captive potential customer. Therefore it is imperative that you make use of this opportunity to pitch your business and make a sale.

Mobile Marketing – The Future Is Here

Will you get a return on investment for the advertising? Maybe not immediately, but you will have the early mover advantage in your favor. In today’s hyper-connected scenario couples with a short attention span, you need to take advantage of this newer marketing option. Over time, this will translate into fresh business or more business, adding to the income kitty. In fact mobile advertising may reach more than five billion dollars by 2015 according to a recent study. That is why it makes sense to have a presence in mobile marketing.

The popularity of smartphones is on the rise: as many as 50 percent of Americans use smartphones instead of basic phones and the numbers are rising all over the world. While younger people are more likely to opt for smartphones, the fact that a smartphone is virtually a mobile computer means that it is used by business people, those who need to be on the go and the professionals.

How Do You Use Mobile Marketing

There are many ways to exploit the reach of smartphones for mobile advertising. Among them are:

• Apps – Often large business have dedicated apps that allow the customer to interact with them directly. Apps can be used for transactions or as part of brand building and customer engagement. When you have your app on somebody’s smartphone, you are in more direct contact with a client than an advertisement in the newspaper or even a website. An interactive app translates into more business.

• Banner ads – With banner ads you can more easily target customers in a designated demographic area. This allows for a narrower focus if that is what you require. Here is where you can put your offers and promotions, discount coupons or whatever that you need to entice the client.

• QR Code – QR codes are still relevant as people use them for a more interactive experience. The very fact that a person with the phone is using the QR code means that he already has some interest in the product or service that you are offering.

• Integrated campaigns – You can and should use any mobile marketing advertising as part of larger advertising plans, including emails, smses, websites and actual physical stores or businesses. You should also easily be found on the user’s smartphone one way or the other.

Don’t forget that smartphones are also mobile computing devices, so you need to have a web presence and social media presence as well as direct mobile advertising.

You need to have the right mix for your business – if your business has a wide reach, you need to target a larger demographic of customers. However, if you business is very local, your focus ought to be narrower and with mobile marketing you can target just the kind of demographic that your business requires. Just as you want more customers for your business, remember people are also looking for value for money and time. As such, mobile marketing which is easy to read and follow, offers to fulfill a need, offers value, reaches the right targets benefits both the clients and the business. Mobile advertising also offers a fast call to action and has a shorter response time, leading to greater efficiency and translating into sales.