Smithsonian Magazine tells the story of a time early in the last century when Ford Motor Company’s engineers weren't able to discover the source of a problem with a large generator at Ford’s plant. Henry Ford finally called in outside assistance, Charles Steinmetz, an unconventional but brilliant mathematician and electrical engineer. Steinmetz rejected assistance from Ford’s staff and spent two days and nights listening to the generator operate, and scribbling notes and calculations on his notepad.
After two days of observations, he asked for a ladder from one of Ford's employees, climbed to the top of the generator, and made a chalk mark on a distinct location, telling Ford’s engineers to replace 16 windings in that area of the generator. The engineers were skeptical, but it turned out that Steinmetz was correct – the generator now worked perfectly.
Steinmetz sent Ford an invoice for $10,000, an incredible amount of money for the time, especially for two days of work at the plant. Ford resisted paying and demanded an itemized invoice, which Steinmetz provided:
Making a chalk mark on the generator – $1
Knowing where to make chalk mark on the generator – $9,999
Ford paid the invoice.
If you haven't experienced it yet, there will come a time when a customer or client tells you that your prices are too expensive. They are only looking at the product or service being provided.
We all praise each of our products or services and advocate their benefits. We must also be confident in why someone should value our knowledge and accept the advice we offer them.
As a business owner, it is vital that you demonstrate your expertise and support your recommendations by conveying the value of your knowledge just as much as your product or service's value.
Sales rely on trust and rapport. Don't focus only on what it is you are selling and why they should buy IT. Spend time informing them of why they should buy it from YOU. What experience do you have in solving the problem they have?
Once you become successful at communicating your personal value as well as the value of what you are selling, your customer will begin to see the worth far outweighs the cost.