How we help people choose the middle option

value pricing Feb 26, 2018

Making the middle option top choice

I often talk about menu pricing and the power of three. It’s truly powerful stuff. It’s the fact that when faced with three options people tend to gravitate towards the middle option.

And it works with pricing too.

So you might only currently offer one package – your tax return package for example. By adding more services and creating two other packages you will find that many will choose to pay you more by going for the middle, and therefore more expensive, option rather than your basic package.

But how do we get them to do that?

There are things you can do to prompt your customers to pick that middle option but essentially it boils down to one thing. Social proof. It’s something we learn from Dr Robert Cialdini, author of Influence: Science and Practice. Social proof is one of the six main laws of influence. It is defined as follows: “As humans we are lazy when it comes to decision making. When it comes to making...

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The power of free

value pricing Feb 05, 2018

The power of free

Everyone loves a bargain. But actually there’s something they love more.

Getting something for free.

The most powerful word in marketing


It’s the most powerful word in marketing. And it’s used all over the place in marketing copy.

A powerful way of presenting your prices to customers is through menu pricing using a tick list of options that shows customers what they do and don’t get. It’s visual, powerful and it works. And most of the time that technique means a series of ticks and crosses.

But sometimes you can add in something different. You can add in the word free.

It’s even more powerful than a tick.

As I’ve already said people love getting something for free. They love getting something more than they expected. It stands out.

Don’t go overboard

Of course, it could be tempting to go overboard. To use it everywhere. But don’t.

People like getting a bonus. Something extra. But use the word free...

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The tick list technique

value pricing Jan 15, 2018

The tick list technique

I’m a strong believer in the power of menu pricing.  You create three different packages – three different options – that you then present to the customer to help increase your chance of an upsell.

But how can you best present those options?

One of the most powerful ways is the tick list technique.  It’s simple.  Visual.  Powerful.

It works.

How to do it

Essentially it’s a simple as it sounds.  You set out a table with your options on it.  Across the top are the packages you offer. Bronze, silver and gold for example.

Down the side you list all the things you do.

Then, with a series of ticks and crosses you mark which services are part of that particular package and which aren’t.

How it helps you and your customer

Although the ultimate aim is convincing the customer it’s also useful for you.  It’s a great way to plan and structure your solutions when you are first designing...

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How do you explain clients need to pay you in advance for your annual accounts

value pricing Dec 25, 2017

Why clients need to pay you in advance for annual accounts

I have talked in the past how you should ensure that your payment terms enable you get paid in advance before you start the work.  It helps your cashflow and better allows your clients to budget.

Many of the firms that I work with are starting to adopt this monthly in advance payment approach for annual work such as financial statements or tax returns.

You can watch the video here.

How it works

It sounds a little confusing but it’s actually quite simple.

For example, if a client has a year end of 31 December then they would start paying from the previous 1 January in 12 installments, or in 12 installments up to the date it’s expected the accounts will be completed.

If the firm is aiming to complete accounts within three months that 31 December year end would be done the following 31 March and the payments would start 12 months before March 31.

How to explain it to clients?

People tell me they love the idea...

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Advanced Menu Pricing

value pricing Dec 15, 2017

Always give the client 3 options

Menu pricing means giving the client different options or different packages to choose from. More importantly, giving them three packages. This means that they can choose an option that suits their circumstances and means clients end up paying more. Now I’m going to share with you some advanced techniques around menu pricing.

You can find the full video explaining these techniques, as well as 3 other powerful videos, when you sign up for my free video course here. This is also where you can sign up for my upcoming free webinars and begin your Price Consulting journey.

How can a tick list help?

The first idea is what I call the tick list technique. What this entails is creating a list of all the various things that will be done as part of a service, and then across three columns, using a tick list format to denote which things are included in which packages.

There's a reason why this is powerful. It's very visual and...

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Powerful Price Discrimination

value pricing Dec 08, 2017

What is Price Discrimination?

Price discrimination simply means charging different customers different prices. This is so important in value pricing because everybody values things differently, which means if you have a client with a single price, it’s always the wrong price. On my Price Consulting programme, when I work with accountants and take them through a 12-month programme, I normally teach 15 or 16 powerful different techniques and methods around price discrimination, but I'm going to share two of them now.

You can find the full video explaining these techniques, as well as 3 other powerful videos, when you sign up for my free video course here. This is also where you can sign up for my upcoming free webinars and begin your Price Consulting journey.

Always give the client 3 options

What economists teach us is there are 3 degrees of price discrimination; first, second and third. The first technique I’m going to share is a form of second degree price discrimination...

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Why cloud accounting means you have to change the way you price

value pricing Dec 04, 2017

Why cloud accounting means you must change the way you price

There’s a big change taking place in the accounting profession currently.

Actually make that a huge change.

It’s the concept of cloud accounting. It’s fundamentally changing everything about our business. It changes how we interact with our clients.  It’s making us more collaborative.  And it means we have to change as a result.

You can watch the video here.

Why we need to change

We have to change our pricing models.  We absolutely have to.  If we don’t there’s only one likely outcome.

We’ll become extinct.

What to know why?  Well in 1988 I was a Chartered Accountant.  Computers weren’t prevalent. Indeed, in the firm I worked in when they did come it was only the partners who had them.

No-one else had access. 

And so, when it came to annual accounts back then a word processing department would create them.   The accounts and trial...

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How to Win More Restaurant Clients

value pricing Dec 01, 2017

Two Powerful Strategies…

Here are two powerful strategies for helping your clients in the food hospitality industry.  When you share these strategies with clients in this industry that you meet, you’ll impress them by demonstrating that you know their industry, and that you’re an expert. It will help you to win them as clients, and it could then lead onto doing some exciting, powerful consulting work at premium prices.

You can find the full video explaining these techniques, as well as 3 other powerful videos, when you sign up for my free video course here.

#1 - Menu Layout Matters!

If you look at a menu in a restaurant, you might see the prices expressed like this:

This is actually a bad thing. Experts in the restaurant industry and menu engineers teach us that there are actually a couple of things going wrong here. The first is that the prices are right-aligned in a vertical column. The problem with this is, subconsciously it encourages...

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Why you need a structured pricing system

value pricing Nov 13, 2017

Why you need a 7 step formula structured pricing system

There are many things in life that need structure.   Pricing is one of them.  Without a structured system pricing simply happens by chance.  By luck.

Instead you want to control the process so that you do pricing the same way every single time.

You can watch the video here.

I have a seven-step formula for achieving this:

1)     Decide upon your price discrimination strategy

This is the strategy behind charging different customers different prices.   And this in itself is fundamental to value pricing since we know that each person values things differently.  This means we can’t have a single price and instead need to price each person separately.   One of the most powerful, and easy to understand ways of doing this is through menu pricing, giving customers a choice with a number of different options.

2)     Work out how to add more value

When you have...

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Essential skills for accountants: What drives profit

value pricing Oct 23, 2017

What are the drivers of profit?

We can add more value to our clients by helping them increase their profits. However, we need to understand that profit is the end result of numerous other drivers. You can’t help a client improve their profit. However, you can help them to improve the underlying drivers.

As you know, profit is made up of total annual sales minus expenses. However, there are different types of costs in a business that behave differently. The main two, as you know, are variable costs (sometimes called direct costs) and fixed costs. When we do a set of annual financial statements, we normally show sales minus direct costs, which is the gross profit, minus fixed costs, which is the profit. The trouble is, we're just scratching the surface because we need to understand what drives those things.

You can find the full video explaining these powerful drivers, as well as 3 other videos, when you sign up for my free video course here.


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