SPECIALIZE... THEN DIVERSIFY!Written by Shery Ma Belle Arrieta
When we think about it, many of things we do seem to 'snowball.'
We come up with an idea, we work on it, we execute it.
Then a second idea comes up as a direct result of first idea.
Along comes a third idea and it's very much related to first two ideas.
Even though it was never in our plans to get from first idea to third, they all seem to fall into place.
They all... jive.
For many of us who make Internet our virtual office, we may have many 'snowball moments.' In fact, our entire online existence may be one big snowball!
Let me give you an example of my own snowball: After I finished creating my first e-mail workshop and liked results, I created several more that would help me earn money to support my sites. I never thought I'd be writing an e-book on subject a couple of months later. It certainly wasn't planned.
Because of e-book, I started another newsletter devoted to topic of e-mail workshops so I can keep in touch with people who bought e-book. It's also a free resource for people who want to learn more about creating and using e-mail workshops, eCourses and tutorials for their business.
Want to Make More Money? Fish in a Bigger Pond!Written by Kimberly Stevens
Setting prices is a dilemma most service business owners encounter at one time or another. This week, it was Susan’s turn. “When I first started my business, I felt uncomfortable charging for my services. Since I was doing it to make a living, I finally just picked a price I thought wouldn't scare too many people away. Now, based on my available work hours, I can't really take on more clients but at rate I'm charging them, I'm not going to make enough money to keep business alive. How do I raise my prices without losing my clients?” she wanted to know.
For whatever reason, it is uncomfortable for many of us to look a person in face and state our hourly rate or cost of a project they want us to complete for them. This is usually rooted in our fear of rejection. We think, ‘What if prospect gasps and falls out of his chair convulsing on floor?’ or ‘What if he snorts with disdain or launches into uncontrollable laughter?’ At beginning, we really need work and generally decide we'd rather start getting some clients to build our reputation and skills, thinking we'll charge a rate we know they'll accept. Besides, we can always raise our prices later. Well, now is "later", so it’s time to bite bullet.
First, understand you aren't asking for their firstborn child -- you are asking for money in exchange for service you are offering. Shakti Gawain, author of "Creating True Prosperity", introduced me to concept of thinking about money as just another form of energy. Just as you put energy into service you provide, client puts energy into their field of interest in order to make money to pay you for your service.
On business-to-business side of things, client's business has clearly made decision to outsource service they are discussing with you. They have decided to use their internal staff's energy to focus on their core business while outsourcing those things they don't have skills or time to do. The same is true of individuals - they could paint their house, but they're calling you. Clearly, they don't want to do it and know it's going to cost money to get someone else to do it. Either way, they are going to hire someone to do it, so why not you?
That said, it's time to raise your prices. You've got two sets of people to deal with here -- your current clients and your future clients. Future clients are easy - simply start quoting higher hourly rate or basing your flat rate proposals on new hourly rate with no mention of a recent price increase. Your fear that you will lose out on some bids WILL come true. You've been fishing in pond that attracts lower-end clients, so you will probably have to start marketing to and networking with prospects on next higher rung. But, so what? It's still your choice – you can stick with low-end guys and struggle to make your business profitable or you can start charging a respectable rate for skills and professionalism you bring to table to create a prosperous business. It's up to you.