Our Biggest Challenge

by Brendon on March 29, 2005

I was talking with a client on Tuesday and a question I asked was “What are the biggest challenges facing you that stop you selling more stuff?”
That’s a fairly normal sort of question we ask – all to try and help us figure out what the client’s problems are so we can provide them with solutions.
Today I found what’s probably my biggest frustration.
Here goes:
A previous client, for whom we had completed quite a deal of work for, rang to let me know that he and his wife were now managing a luxury hotel in the middle of Australia’s third largest city. My client is managing it for three- (3) months whilst the usual manager takes a break.
Just before leaving, the manager asked my client to get a web site done for the place (it’s recently opened). He’d already received a quote but wanted another one.
My client is smart
Now my client is a very smart operator. He knows the impact that a quality, well marketed web site could have on this business. And he knows that you pay a little extra for quality.
My client showed me the competitor quote and it’s very, very low. And it’s very, very low because the web developer has quoted to do a 6 page web site and that’s it. My proposal would be for a 30 pages site with expert copywriting, a back-end database, fully optimised for search engines, etc, etc.
He knows the quote is ridiculous
My client is smarter than that. He knows the quote is ridiculous. And he knows the value that a site like the one this person proposed would be minimal. And he accepts he will have to pay 5-6 times as much as this other quote for a decent site. Which is great.
And that’s our biggest frustration
In our meeting today I suddenly realised that this was probably my biggest frustration in business.
Trying to demonstrate the value of our proposal when compared to a quote that is very significantly cheaper.
You see, quite often the client is wary of you when you try and sell something. And they’ll often want to go for the cheaper quote to minimise the perceived risk to themselves.
The reason we’ll win the job is because our client has worked with us before and knows their is no risk at all in working with us. And they’ll get a great and valuable site at a great price.
Well that’s it for my biggest frustration. Not quite sure what the lesson is there – maybe demonstrate value and provide the best solution. And as always, keep in contact with old clients because they’ll keep giving you work.

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