In our new series, Steve Glaister gives his expert insight into issues affecting the Channel. This time – it’s pricing.
It’s a scenario that Sales People in any industry will be familiar with. You’re in a meeting with a would-be customer. You do the demo, you deliver a perfect pitch, it’s going fantastically and you wait expectantly for feedback …..
And then it happens.
The question that anyone in this role always dreads.
“So …… what’s your best price?”
My heart always sinks at this point, and I usually get the feeling that the customer has been watching a little too much Bargain Hunt.
And therein lies the issue.
In a Bargain Hunt senario, this question is perfectly acceptable. Contestants on the game show are selling an item, something physical that can be touched, seen and inspected. Asking for the best price of the item makes perfect sense.
At Invosys, we provide concepts and abstract entities. Effectively we sell time – we sell minutes which is measure of time – and we sell loads of it.
We make fractions of a penny on every minute and so selling just one minute simply doesn’t cover it – yet selling millions and continually providing millions absolutely does.
So when I am asked “what’s your best price?”, it’s a none starter and it’s really impossible to answer without asking a lot more questions back. What the customer really means is “what price are you willing to give me based on the information I have told you?”. That’s when you realise that in the eyes of that customer, the deal is purely based on cost – and nothing else.
Invosys customers truly understand the value we offer – a combination of outstanding products, innovation, service and drive – and its only when they see the true value of what they will get from us and what it will do for their business, that we can start to talk about the numbers. Any earlier and it can devalue the product, the infrastructure and ultimately, the start of a long-term relationship.
“So, what’s your best price?”
Best leave that question to a daytime TV show.