Before we dive into this week’s podcast episode about transparent pricing… a BIG WARM welcome back!

What do you mean BACK, Tash?Tash Corbin Pricing Online Business

Well…. technically we had a short hiatus of podcast episodes, so we could finalise our transition to a new platform (Buzzsprout)*.

But Didi and Grace on my team (and the fabulous Buzzsprout helpdesk) got it moved SO QUICKLY, you might not have even noticed!!

To celebrate our new platform and the retooling of the Heart-Centred Business Podcast, I have two treats for you:

Treat 1: You’ll be getting extra podcast episodes!

We’re releasing multiple episodes a week for the next few weeks to give you some extra episodes, extra practical advice, and some new tools and templates that you’ll be able to download with the episodes.

The episodes will be shorter and sharper because when it’s audio only, I can get straight to the point and edit myself as I go. Win-win.

Treat 2: The Client Attraction Challenge is back!

The Client Attraction Challenge is a week-long program in which we nail the important foundations of your business and marketing in a way that has you applying it immediately, attracting warm leads, and making sales to clients in your business as quickly as possible. We sort your niche, messaging, offers AND marketing all in just 5 days!

It’s $150 AUD, BUT if you join before the 10th of April, you get it for half price! The Client Attraction Challenge has a dedicated Facebook community, feedback threads and live Q&A sessions, as well as co-working.

OKAY… NOW ON WITH THE SHOW!

transparent prices image


Here for the links referenced in the show notes?

Join the Client Attraction Challenge – tashcorbin.com/client

Grab the free Core Messaging template – tashcorbin.com/coremessage


 

EPISODE 393: Listen using the player below, or click the links to your fave platform to subscribe and listen over there:

Listen on Apple Podcasts Listen on SpotifListen on YouTube

 

Have you ever been excited to find an offer that feels perfect for you, but you can’t find the price? That feeling of excitement turns into frustration when you don’t know how much it is, and whether it’s in your budget!

This episode unpacks it all:

  • The reasons for secrecy around pricing
  • What I recommend in relation to secret or transparent pricing
  • How the need to keep your prices secret helps you to figure out exactly what’s missing in your strategy and messaging…

Let’s dive in!

In the coaching space, it’s really common advice: If you offer VIP packages or high-ticket offers (ie. masterminds or group programs), you should get people onto a call before you divulge the price of your offer.

This is built on the premise that if someone is interested in your offer, then you need to have a conversation with them first. Because you can ask lots of questions, really understand what they’re looking for, and tailor your pitch to their needs before the BIG REVEAL of the price.

At the surface, there are many logical reasons a coach would tell you to keep your prices secret (and therefore justify why they do the same).

For example, you may have a package that needs to be built bespoke to individuals, so there’s no way to know the price up front (I mean, you could still give a price range, right?)

But actually, in most cases you’ve got one or two set packages that you offer to most people anyway. And so do they. So why not tell people what they are?

The assertions I have seen include a range of different reasons: You need the potential client to be on board first, before you tell them the price. You need to ensure you understand their priorities, ensure they understand the depth of what it is that you’re offering, before you reveal the price. You need to illicit “micro-agreements” from them along the way, so that when you then make your big reveal, you’ve reduced their resistance and increased the likelihood they’ll buy.

I can 100% acknowledge that there is some logic to this premise.

But ultimately, I think it comes from fear.

If you’re so afraid that people won’t book a sales conversation with you to discuss your offers if they know what the prices are upfront, what does that say about your belief in the value proposition or the return that someone gets for the price you’re asking them to invest?

We also know that secrecy, especially where the potential client needs to jump through some hoops before a price is revealed, will favour those with financial and educational privilege.

Those people who have financial stability or educational privilege of being able to see the process that they are being walked through, are usually the ones less likely to buy something they don’t need, and less likely to be financially destabilised by a high-ticket purchase, than those who do not have those same privileges.

How does that work, exactly?

At the core of old-school sales conversations, we have some nasty, consent-bypassing tactics. For example – the six yeses, which gets the potential client to agree to six things with a ‘yes’ before presenting the offer and revealing the price. (This works by getting them into that hypnotic trance state of saying “yes” on repeat)

I don’t know about you, but that just sounds really yucky to me. It certainly does not feel that I’m doing what’s in the best interest of the person who’s considering working with me.

If I was that desperate to talk someone into buying something that they maybe didn’t need, that I would need to resort to hypnosis tactics to get the sale, then I know what I need to do is improve my offer, packaging and message. I’m not going to use trickery and bypass people’s consent, simply because I don’t know how to present my offer effectively. Nope.

As a buyer, I generally don’t book a conversation if I don’t know the price.

If a service provider can’t speak proudly and confidently about the price of their offer, that tells me they have fears or concerns about it not being worth the price.

And if they don’t believe it’s worth it, then why would I invest that money? Why would I pay them?

On the other hand, at times where I have jumped in and booked a sales call, because I have seen the price of something else, or a friend mentioned the price when recommending them… and then the price revealed was waaaaay higher than I expected, it’s also felt horrible. It sucks to participate in a 45-minute sales conversation or a one-hour free session with someone, only to find out that their offer is ten times my expected spend.

Even if it’s only double what I expected to spend, I feel like I’ve wasted their time and they’ve wasted my time.

It’s not enjoyable to discuss options that just aren’t within my budget at this point in time. I have a successful business and a healthy cash flow, and I don’t have any problem raising the money to be able to do something if I want to stretch for it. But the fact that we had to get to that point through all of those hoops and making sure I said yes to all of the things first before the price was revealed… honestly, that’s not the way I want to engage with people.

It’s even more concerning if they are selling something business-related.

I mean, think about it: If that’s how they make sales, it’s what they’re going to try and do to my audience as well. Nope – that’s not in alignment or integrity with how I do business.

I would prefer to role-model pricing transparency.

The prices of my products are listed on the sales page. I talk openly about my VIP pricing structure. When I promote things on social media, I list the price on the post, or it’s easy to find when they click the link.

Not only that, but in the Heart-Centred Soul-Driven Entrepreneurs community, we now require full price transparency. The team even goes so far as to verify prices and assertions about ‘usual’ pricing. Last year we observed quite a few people saying, for example, that their masterclass is ‘normally’ $222, but they’re happy to offer it to the members of the group for free – yet when we check their website, Facebook and Instagram, there is no evidence whatsoever that they’ve ever charged any money for this class. In fact, it’s available for free on every single one of their other platforms.

In addition, we’ve noticed a trend of statements such as: “Before I start charging $300 for this course, I’m going to give it away for free to the first five people who say yes in the comments.”  But they use the same pitch and the same price assertion, for the same thing…. for three and a half years.

I’d seen enough of the deceptive practices, so I just decided to set a new standard. My group, my rules!

And it protects the community from the drama and deception anyway. I mean, if you need to rely on these sorts of practices in order to have a successful business, then how successful is it, really? Plus, if we don’t lock it down, what ends up happening is that members buy from those people, and then come back and promote their own offers using the same tactics – and because they purchased from a member of the Heart-Centred community, they assume that it’s a sound and consistent practice. But it’s not.

Now that we require verifiable and transparent pricing, I have more confidence that we are creating a space in which people feel they’re safe to trust the messaging that’s in front of them.

By requiring pricing transparency in the group, we are normalising price transparency.

transparent prices business start-up

Let’s make transparent prices the STANDARD.

Nowadays, more consumers are refusing to engage with sellers who aren’t transparent in their pricing, and more sellers are rejecting this notion that they have to be deceptive or secretive in their pricing structure. You can imagine just how amazing that feels for me to see it!! Heart… SINGING!

How does pricing transparency help improve your business strategy?

If you’ve been worried about openly sharing your prices, or you’ve used the secret pricing tactics before, the fabulous news is that your concerns about transparent pricing, and your impulse to use secret pricing, valued-at pricing, or inflated pricing, actually provide perfect insight into your business strategy focus to address it. The worries tell you exactly what needs your attention!

For example, if you’re worried that when you don’t have enough time to share your offer thoroughly with people, then they won’t understand how amazing your offer is, that tells you exactly what needs to be addressed. We need to improve your ability to speak confidently and concisely about your offer and the value proposition of that offer. SIMPLE!

By putting your energy and attention into really nailing that value proposition, you be far more confident in expressing your understanding of your audience, and what they need. So they will ‘get it’ and understand why it’s a great fit for them, and a valuable solution. And you won’t need to keep your prices a secret anymore.

Nail the value proposition, and you won’t worry so much about the value.

Another example is if you worry that you need to get people super-excited about the outcomes of working with you and invested in the potential of your offer first, then your content and core messaging need to bring that forward. That’s all. If you can only generate excitement about working with you in a one-on-one conversation, my suggestion is to practice translating that energy, connection and messaging into your broadcast messaging.

A lot of people who join Take Off tell me that they are great at connecting with people 1:1, and building connection and excitement in conversations, but when it comes to translating that onto social media, they feel like they get stiff and robotic in their language. That isn’t solved by avoiding trying though. The way through this is to build the skill, which comes from practice.

The more you practice writing your offers conversationally, the more they sound like you. Conversational you. Caring you. The real you.

I think one of the biggest challenges that people face when it comes to promoting offers and packages online, is that they’re relying on one single post to do all the heavy lifting.

Every post needs to:

  • Hook cold audience to read it
  • Drive up the urgency
  • Facilitate a lightbulb moment, so that they understand this is what they need
  • Present the offer clearly
  • Convey the value
  • Then pitch and present the details of offer as the best next step

… all in one post?!

That’s not effective social media content. That’s not how you write offers for social media. And yet, it’s the most common structure of post I see day-in, day-out.

Effective social media content is part of an ecosystem.

Your content ecosystem is a suite of content pieces, all helping to move your audience closer to understanding the value of your work and readiness to work with you. Your ecosystem builds a relationship, builds trust, and helps people to move forward towards their goal. Your ecosystem facilitates lightbulb moments, so people in your audience realise they’ve perhaps been trying to find a ‘quick fix’ solution, instead of actually solve the deeper issue. There’s so much you can achieve with content, when you build your ecosystem fully and understand how they all work together long-term.

That way, when it’s time to share your offer, it doesn’t have to do all the heavy lifting on its own.

That is the exact ‘lightbulb’ that participants in my Imperfect Post Project (IPP) have experienced in the last two rounds I have facilitated. They realise they have been putting their heart and soul into every single post that they put on social media. But because they create them one at a time, every time they create it, they feel like they’re starting from scratch with their content and audience. They feel like they need to say everything in this one post, when in fact that’s what is eroding their engagement and results.

In participating in the IPP, people are seeing that when they’re creating a hundred posts in one go, they can allow different posts to do different jobs, express different parts of their core message, and speak to different parts of their Client Attraction Process. Because they can see all of the content ecosystem pieces working together.

No one single post has to do all of the workload.

And, luckily, that brings me to your fabulous free resource to accompany this podcast episode!

It is my Core Messaging template.

This template and the video guidance that goes with it will help you to map out those key elements of your core message. This helps you improve your skills in expressing your niche and the bridge messaging that helps them to understand why your work is so powerful. Plus you’ll map out the value proposition of your offers, thoroughly. Value proposition answers the question: What is the return on this investment and why is that important to your ideal clients? When you’ve got that nailed, you’re able to chill on the ‘tactics’ to try and get people on calls before they know the price. You can share your prices with your offers confidently, because you’ve been able to express the value effectively.

EXCITING!
You can grab the template and training at tashcorbin.com/coremessage.

And of course any time you want to reach out and let me know your thoughts about an episode, or ask a follow-up question – please do! You can contact me here or get in touch on Facebook or Instagram.

AND DON’T FORGET: The Client Attraction Challenge starts on 22 April 2024.

Until next time, I cannot WAIT to see you SHINE.

Tash Corbin Business Mentor and Strategist

 

*Links marked with * are affiliate or referral links, and if you go on to purchase or subscribe to these products, I may receive a discount or commission.