The reason Apple was able to take on the PC was that Apple made beautiful products that were not plagued with the challenges of the PC—and at a higher price point. At the time Apple executed this strategy, you could buy a PC or a laptop for a few hundred bucks, and Apple offered you a MacBook Pro at something close to the highest price available.
Apple did not go the market with the pitch, “We are just like a PC but cheaper.” They went to the market with, “We are different, and we are better, and people are switching.” Then they ambushed unsuspecting shoppers by popping up retail stores that drew people in to look at their products, products that looked much better designed than PCs, even if those old Apple designs can’t match Apple now.
It’s important to understand the elasticity of price and general strategy. Pitching that you are just like your competitor but cheaper is an admission that you are investing even less in what you provide than their current provider, that you are making even greater concessions. This is why “Me too, but for a few bucks less” only attracts the population of clients or customers who mistake price for value.
Another segment of the market, a larger segment in many markets, isn’t interested in maintaining the status quo and all the challenges they are experiencing. These clients and customers will pay more to eliminate those challenges and produce better results. It can be difficult to believe, but it is true that people who are willing to change for better results are also willing to pay a little more to obtain them.
If you have a compelling, differentiated offering that happens to have a higher price than your competitors and alternatives, you should embrace the advantage this provides you as a salesperson. Instead of avoiding the investment conversation and withholding your price as long as possible, you are better off leading with it, promising what you provide is better than what they are experiencing now—and worth the greater financial investment.
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Filed under: Pricing