We’re talking about money and business, and how to know what to price your services as a service based business owner. [affiliate links may be used at no additional expense to you. thank you for supporting witt and company!]
Money and business is a hard, challenging and often uncomfortable topic.
I had the pleasure of chatting with a client’s mastermind group recently and the topic of pricing came up fairly early in the conversation. One of the mastermindersquickly rattled off a few questions like “How do you know what to charge?” “How did you come to the price of your packages now?” and “How do you feel confident about charging what you want?”
These are the same exact questions I asked myself when I first got started and if I’m being honest, they’re still questions I wrestle with today. What I thought would be helpful is to walk through the pricing journey here at Witt and Company and share some resources that have really helped me grow when it comes to money and business.
Pricing Strategy One: Research
When I first started, I remember doing some research to determine what else was out there and using that as a baseline for pricing my own services. So, my first recommendation for you is to dig in and see what else is being done.
No, it’s not glamorous or flashy or fun, but it is worth the effort. Whether this means asking in Facebook groups with peers, searching on Google and looking at people’s websites or consulting with a few trusted business friends, the point is to get out there and see what other people are doing or recommending.
The asterisk: This isn’t meant to be the be-all-end-all for you. It’s a starting point. On that note, I do not recommend crowd-sourcing your pricing. I see so many people pop into random Facebook groups and say ‘Hey, what would you pay for [this]’ and they get a wide variety of answers. The problem is you’re asking people who aren’t necessarily your target audience so their opinion is absolutely irrelevant. When I say research, I mean ask other people in your industry, space or category and be specific about what you’re wanting. And it’s worth repeating: take everyone’s opinions with a grain of salt – at the end of the day, YOU get to decide what you want to charge.
The second asterisk: Your experience should be taken into consideration when researching. If you’re looking at people who have been in business and doing the work for three, five or ten years, and you’re brand-spankin’-new, their pricing is going to be higher than yours.
Pricing Strategy Two: Experience
Yes, you should charge a reasonable price so you can make a decent living. But, I think you also need to price where you’re at with your experience. If you’re brand new (as in, no corporate/professional experience prior to starting your business) to a line of work, your pricing should not be in line with someone who has been doing the same thing for five or ten years.
That being said, corporate experience should be taken into consideration. If you’ve done similar work in a professional setting before going out on your own, hell yes that goes towards your pricing structure. Why shouldn’t it?
The best example I have is my own. My educational background is advertising and marketing. My ‘corporate’ experience was working at nonprofits, designing brand collateral, managing events and performing general marketing tasks. When I started Witt and Company, my first brand design client was a friend and when I priced their package, I definitely considered that while I knew how to design the marketing collateral they wanted, this would be my first logo design. So, I found a balance, given my level of experience.
The asterisk: Professional and corporate experience is great, however, it’s vastly different from 1:1 client work as a business owner. You can have ten years of corporate experience but there will still be things you don’t know when doing the work on behalf of your own company. Which brings me to this: I wholeheartedly believe that pricing is an iterative, personal process and the best way to get started with (and to confidently increase!) what you charge is to get out there and work with clients. Pay attention to what’s going well and what’s not working, and continuously improve that experience every single time.
Pricing Strategy Three: Mindset
Ever heard of the term ‘Money Mindset’? It was a foreign concept to me before I started working with a business coach but once I became aware, the floodgates opened and I couldn’t learn fast enough.
Your Money Mindset is the perspective or relationship you have with money. And, whether or not you’re aware of it, the way you view money absolutely has an effect on how you charge for your work.
This is a rabbit hole of a topic so I’m just going to get surface level. Also, there are people out there who have way better resources if you’re interested in A) learning more, and/or B) changing your money story. What I can say is this: the more I work on my relationship with money, the easier it has become to feel comfortable and confident in my pricing.
Before I share some resources, I hope this point is really hammering home: THIS WORK IS IMPORTANT. You can be the best of the best at what you do, but if you have a terrible money mindset, I can almost guarantee that you are holding yourself back.
Okay, off the soap box, onto the resources.
Two of my favorite money-mindset books:
You are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero
Get Rich, Lucky Bitch by Denise Duffield Thomas
A few money mindset podcast episodes:
3 Minute Money Making Affirmation by The Heart Centered Entrepreneur Podcast
How to Change the Way You Think About Money by Screw the Nine to Five Podcast
How to Make the Money You Deserve & Know Your Worth by Don’t Keep Your Day Job Podcast
Women and Money by The Life Coach School Podcast
One Secret to Making Money in Your Business by The Courage and Clarity Podcast
A Few Final Thoughts on Pricing
Pricing is not always an easy thing in business. In fact, it can be a great point of stress, especially if you’re new.
However, it doesn’t have to be hard. It doesn’t have to always be uncomfortable. Yes, there is going to be some discomfort, especially when you test out a new pricing structure for the first time. But there’s a difference between slight discomfort and a completely negative visceral reaction. For me, getting to that point has taken time, effort and a whole lotta mindset work. So, I’ll leave you with this: give yourself grace, be patient and keep showing up.
All my best,
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