Niching and price increasing to create a great solo business – Val Geisler

Door Erno Hannink | Podcast

dec 06

Vandaag het gesprek met Val Geisler.

Val Geisler is ridiculously obsessed with email. An Email Marketing Conversion Copywriter and Strategist, Val spent over a decade on the inside of companies from non-profits to 7-figure businesses to tech startups.

 

She brings her background in content creation, customer experience, and digital strategy to her incredible clients every day. Email isn’t dead, and Val is here to help you bring yours back to life.

 

The last six years she’s spent deep in the world of customer experience and research. Val built the content and email marketing for a fast-growing startup, wrote around the Internet about what makes for good email. She is an introvert who loves figuring out how people think.

 

Val started her business in 2011. She started as a virtual assistant, a generalist. The goal was to simply replace her salary. Which she did, but she also learned about the other expenses, taxes for a business owner. Slowly she shifted more towards project management where she contracted other specialists.

That’s where she learned to focus more and more on customer experience – niching.

 

Then she was offered a full time position at ConvertKit. So she paused her own business. After 1,5 years she was ready to restart her business but now with the focus on email in this niche of companies that use monthly recurring revenue for their business.

 

By talking about the development of her business it becomes clear that once she makes a choice for the direction of her business she is clear what to say no to.

 

By saying no to more and more leads that came to her from experience of the past, she was able to create her own blue ocean. She increased the pricing slowly but steadily. Her full day rate is now almost at $ 3.000 and she is booked out for 2-3 months for projects.

 

Enjoy the insights with Val.

Let’s get started…

Show Notes

Phillip Morgans

Episode 175

www.valgeisler.com/

www.linkedin.com/in/lovevalgeisler/

www.instagram.com/lovevalgeisler

 

Links uit de podcast

 

Transcriptie:

 

Erno:

Today I have another conversation with a solopreneur Freelancer that has created at a very specific niche for herself. And in this way, she’s able to make the money that she’s looking for. And that it was she came onto my path because of Joel Kletke that have also interviewed in the previous podcast, I will put the episode Lincoln with the show notes and Val is another person that was on my list that I said, Well, I think it is really great to talk to her because she has is really great niche and and, and the way that she charges is also very interesting. Welcome to the show, though.

 

 

Val: Well, thanks for having me.

 

 

Erno: So I’ve been reading a lot of your stuff today in the preparation of this conversation. And I found a lot of stuff that you do and how you write. And I like the way that you

are transparent, but also direct. And, and

I know it feels easy to connect with you, you in your writing.

 

 

Val: Oh, thank you. I aim to be helpful, but also not beat around the bush. So I like to, I don’t want to waste anyone’s time. So I get straight to the point as much as possible. But I also try to do some teaching around that. So that’s the that’s the main way that I like to write. And to me, it’s all about delivering value, and you can’t deliver value if you aren’t helping people. And if you aren’t telling them the truth, then that’s not very helpful.

 

 

Erno: Hmm. And, and because I’ve listened to have listened to I’ve written he’s now right. I’ve been reading your profiles, for example, on on LinkedIn. And they are you saying that you work in general for what you call brand?

 

 

Val: I’m in our focus brands. Yeah, so monthly recurring revenue, Mr. Yeah, so typically, that looks like software companies. And sometimes it’s e commerce if they have a subscription service, but those are the main companies that I work with, is people who are really focused on on what that monthly recurring revenue is, and, and the impact that that has on their business.

 

 

Erno: And he didn’t, he said, mostly in business to consumer business to business, or is it both,

 

 

Val: it’s mostly B to C. And so I don’t do a ton of b2b,

it’s a and I definitely don’t do enterprise. That’s like a whole other problem to solve. And my friend Allie solves that problem really well. And so she does a lot of the similar work that I do and a bit more on that the enterprise side so I like to send referrals to her when I get those but I love B to C and I love e commerce

great so I I am a member of the form of superfast business that is a James Franco ease in Australia, and he’s doing coaching and he has a membership as well. But it’s not it’s not it’s it’s a yearly fee that you pay does it does that fall into the, in your workers, or is that just not included.

 

 

Erno: Um, I think the, the membership model is interesting, because

it you do need to work to retain your customers over time. And even if you’re paying an annual fee for something you want to continue to see value month over month, so that you’re never questioning that annual fee, or, you know, asking for a refund or. And then, depending on the business model, I mean, it might be that he only wants people in there for a year, and then they leave. But if he wants people to continue to come back then looking at some of the same techniques that that we utilize for, for software as a service and,

and subscription based e commerce, those those techniques can definitely apply to membership based businesses. It just depends on, you know, the intention behind it, how long they want people in the program, things like that. But yeah, the whole point is that your your job as a business is to provide value to your customers. And when they you stop providing value to them, that’s when they leave. And in, in SAS, that’s called churn. And it’s one of the biggest problems that that SAS companies face is dealing with ongoing customer churn. And, and, you know, the, the fact the matter is, is that you might have a really great product, but the product alone isn’t going to keep your customers around month over month, for the most part, I mean, there are cases where the product doing its job is enough. But more and more these days, you know, we have so many choices as consumers that we need to feel a connection with the brand, we need to feel like we matter, and that we’re more than just a number, because otherwise, we’ll find a deal for a different software that does the same thing. And if it’s not too cumbersome, to try to switch over to a different piece of software, then the natural instinct is to, to want to find that place of connection. And, and then, you know, feel some sense of belonging. And if you if the only thing you’re providing is a service a piece of software month over month, then it becomes more challenging to battle churn. When you when you go focus on building relationships, and connecting with your customers on a human level, then churn magically goes down, people stay longer, and they feel connected. And, and sometimes, even if they aren’t actively using the product, they’ll still stick around just because they, they feel connected to your brand. And they’ll find reasons to use the product that maybe they weren’t using it for. So there’s lots of reasons to focus

focus on that connection, and the customer from a

from a communication standpoint, and not just a product standpoint.

 

 

Erno: So how, because you started after you left University, you started

in another business, you know, that area, you were at the state and event manager in several companies, how does this relate to what you’re doing today?

 

Val: my friend Natalie calls it a spiral staircase, you know, we’re not on this corporate ladder, necessarily, where it’s this one, one straight line, but a spiral staircase, where they, you’re still going up and, you know, progressing. But the view might look a little bit different, each couple of steps. And, and that’s certainly been true for me, I mean, I, you know, I, I did go to school for theatre production, and I worked in theatre and special events when I graduated. And, and a lot of that work still does apply today. I mean, ultimately, theatre and special events is about humans, and connection, and creating something really special and walking people through a journey together. And, and all of that goes into the work that I do today, I today, I do it sitting behind a computer and through email, but that that experience that overall customer journey or you know, in the case of an event or theater production, that the journey the audience goes on, it’s all still there. And that that’s the piece that carries through in every kind of work that I’ve ever done.

 

 

Erno: So in the theater, you’re in direct, you’re on the stage, you’re in the center.

Now, since since you started your own business with your own website, you’ve more or less

the common like an introvert because you’re, you’re just behind your website or your screen?

 

Val: Well, and in theater. I majored in theater production. And I was a stage manager, which means you’re behind the scenes. Yeah, so I was never on stage or in the lights or anything, I was definitely behind the scenes, and the person who would make everything happen without, you know, ideally, no one in the audience knows that I’m the if everything’s going well. And that’s still very much true for the work that I do today. You know, if, if everything is working smoothly and going well, then it’s not even a thought in the customers mind that that somebody is doing all these things. And you know, that they are being segmented and sent communication based on their activity. And they don’t even think about that, because it’s happening so smoothly behind the scenes. And that’s, that’s the work that I do. I think I’ve always, I’ve always been an introvert, and it’s just manifested itself in different ways. But yeah, it’s still

still focused on people. But I, I get to do it from a little bit more of a quiet place, and, and not surrounded by, by people in theater unnecessarily anymore.

 

Erno: I can understand the parallels now. There. Yeah. So how did you What was it drink from you, for you to start your own business. And,

 

 

Val: well, at the time I this was about seven years ago, I was working for a retail company called Lulu lemon Athletica. And they were just coming to the United States for the first time they’re based out of Vancouver, Canada. And my job for them was I was opening stores and, and that really meant putting on a lot of events around town and connecting with the community. And again, that that overall customer journey and working there, I learned a lot about business they really

focused on, you know, here’s a budget, here’s, here’s every, all the supplies, everything you need, will teach you how to run a business. And, and it’s up to you, how you spend your budget, how you sell your merchandise, how you connect with your community. So I did a lot of it was a little bit of like a business Masters in Business or something, because it was

crash course in how to run a business working there. And in doing that, I learned that, you know, one of the things that was constantly shared with us was that as a brand, they didn’t want you to, necessarily unless you really wanted to, they didn’t want you to work there for the rest of your life. And, and again, unless that was a career goal of yours. If you had other goals, the the real intention behind teaching people how to run businesses was so that you could take what you learned and take it out into the world. And, and, and see change happening in you in your own work and in your community. And so I knew that I wanted to do something a little bit different. And I had these skills that I I learned over the years there and, and I had some friends who ran their own businesses, and they needed some support and help and things that I knew how to do or knew how to Google how to do and, and so I I offered to help them virtually. And for a fee. And my goal was to replace my salary. And I did and and I became a virtual assistant before even really knew what one was. And I just helped my friends, even with little things they needed done here and there for their business. I was very much a generalist, I kind of did whatever, for all different kinds of businesses. And and again, like I said, My goal was to to replace my salary. And I, I did that. But I didn’t learn about like,

Okay, well, you replace your salary, but now you have to pay your taxes. So what are you gonna do about that. And, you know, there’s the exception is that come along with running a business paying to have your website hosted and your email list maintained. And those things they those little expenses add up. So I was really battling that from a financial standpoint of how do I continue to make ends meet and and not get myself into a ton of trouble here. And and that was a real life lesson. And how do I how do I manage it all and

and be profitable, and it’s something I struggled with for a really long time

 

 

Erno:  Yeah, I understand. So battling the financial issues, because you had to learn about all the extra cost you had. And it was not just about replacing the cell, you had to have more money, make more money so that you can cover on your cost.

 

 

Val: Yeah, there was definitely a lot of things that weren’t considered, you know, I didn’t think about all those extra costs. And, and so I tried things like, well, I’ll just take on an extra client. And then I

said, Yeah, continue peace. Yeah,nso I thought that I would like take on an extra client. But I realized, well, now I don’t have any I was working all kinds of crazy hours. And, you know, I that wasn’t going to work out. And it wasn’t until I I shifted into being like, more of a project manager and I worked with other virtual assistants who were

specialized in certain areas of, you know, the things that I was doing as, as more of a generalist, they they did that and that alone, and I worked with them, I hired them as, as contractors, for me to help manage this huge workload I had built up and, and that’s when I started to think about specialization and the impact it would have on on my business.

 

 

Erno: I didn’t implement anything for several years after that, but it’s when I it’s when I really saw people specializing for the very first time,

How long did it take you to implement this when you saw it, and then you figure out you have to do this.

 

 

Val: Yeah, well, my business changed a lot. So I worked with these specialists as a project manager. And, and,

 

and in the course of that, my my business ended up shifting a lot. And I stopped doing virtual assistant services in lieu of working with people on their overall customer experience. Because a lot of what I was doing as a virtual assistant was that kind of administration, managing the customer

flow, the project management, all of that, and I started working with small teams on how they manage their customers and, you know, basically like project management, but teaching them how to better manage their own customers. So I I didn’t have a need for these subcontractors anymore. I wasn’t offering those services and any longer so my business really shifted then and when I was doing that work, I was essentially just focused on customer experience. And that’s where I really started to

at the time I thought about it as Nishing, that was like my niche was customer experience. And I started writing about it on my blog. And, but I still was really focused on

on the, the niche itself, and not who I was serving. So I was still doing that for all kinds of different business types. And, you know, I was working with graphic designers and, and small business owners and mom and pop shops, and, you know, all different kinds of people. And so their customer experiences were very unique. And when I was doing that, I was

writing on my blog a lot. And I had started using an email marketing tool, and I pitched them about working with them on their customer experience as well. I had never had a customer who was a software company, and they were a small growing startup and with some need of better customer onboarding., I pitched them to work on their customer onboarding. And, and they said that they wanted to hire me to write the blog and manage their, their blog content.

And so I ended up working there full time I, I left my business, you know, I wrapped up things with my existing clients and, and figured I’d try this in house role for a little bit and work there for a year and a half and learned a lot about email and the way that it related to the customer journey and overall customer experience. I learned about software companies, and met a lot of people in that industry. And the the future of what my business would become was kind of shaping itself without me realizing.

 

 

Erno: and in the meantime, did did you said you just stopped your business for a while? But did you just also stop the website and everything, just everything? Okay.

 

 

Val: Yeah, I kept I, I would occasionally blog and email my my list, I did have a pretty engaged email list. And so I would continue to communicate with them on a fairly regular basis. And at the same time that my focus was changing in, in the business, I was interested, you know, a lot more in this customer journey, and less about, like, kind of the systems and tools thing that I was talking about a lot as a virtual assistant. So my audience was shifting, they want a different things for me, I wanted different things from them. And so it kind of made sense to have a slower cadence with the, with the email list, and with my blog, and and let it evolve, and get all the unsubscribed and collect new subscribers and all that stuff. Yeah,

 

Erno: I am, I’ve had that I have a similar experience

changing my audience number of times, in the in, in, in my career as a as a business owner. And I find it very difficult for people to understand what I do, because they’ve seen a number of times me changing my topic or my niche.  how did you work with that?

 

 

Val: Yeah, it’s

a little bit of just saying, Yeah, no, I don’t do that anymore. And,

and then also, in a lot of cases,

what I talk about has always related back to this, this main point of customer experience. So whether it was through virtual assistant services, or through one to one coaching that I was doing for a while or now through email, it’s all about this, this customer experience, customer journey. So if someone would say, like, oh, valid, she she does, you know, coaching on customer experience for good developers? I can say, Well, not quite. I definitely talk about customer experience, but it’s all through email, and I work right now with b2c, SAS, SAS companies, and e commerce companies. So I don’t work with, you know, the small business owner entrepreneur who is, you know, running a web design company, for example, so

 

that I’m, I’m very comfortable saying, No, I don’t do that anymore. And a lot of times, people are referencing something I did you know, at this point. Now, I’ve been focused on email for a year and a half. And that’s not going anywhere for me. So if someone’s referencing, oh, Val knows everything about systems, well, that’s from when I systems and tools of, you know, various needs for small businesses. That’s from when I was running a virtual assistant business five years ago. So I’m like, that person obviously hasn’t done any research into what I’m doing now, before, they just recommended me to someone. So I don’t I take those things with a grain of salt. If you if you go to my website, Val guys.com, it’s pretty clear exactly what I do now. So yeah, I don’t worry about that too much.

 

 

Erno: But it means that you just have to learn to say no, a lot more than

 

 

Val: Yeah, absolutely. Yep.

 

 

Erno: And is I read your post from I think it was 2016 where you had to you have Hell no, it all lines up.

 

Val: Yeah, yeah, I, you, you do have to get comfortable saying no, as a business owner. And, and in lots of different ways, you need to say no, to clients that aren’t a good fit, you need to say no to opportunities that are taking up time that you don’t want to spend that way, you need to say no to friends who want to have lunch in the middle of the day, because they think that you don’t do anything all day long. There’s lots of things you need to say no to. And the more practice you can get, you know, do it in small ways. So that it when it’s the big ones it and it really counts, it’s easier to do.

 

 

Erno: So when you when you’ve decided that you were going back on your own and you focus on email right away in the from the beginning, did you did you say okay, no, to all the old business or did you just get something going so that you at least made some money.

 

 

Val: Yeah. And when I left my in house position, I was a kind of a general marketer. So I was this generalist, again, that did lots of different things. And I kept finding myself drawn toward these email projects that was, you know, something that I was really passionate about, and still writing about, and blogging on a regular basis. And those are the projects that I really wanted to be working on. And I just, I kind of just noticed that for, for some time, it was a couple of months of realize this slow realization of, you know, I really want to be just doing email. And I

learned about someone named Philip Morgan, who I credit entirely to my knowledge of specialization, because Philip has this wonderful email list, it’s a daily email that you get about specialization, and I, I joined his list and implemented what he said every day a little bit, you know, it’s like a little tiny step every single day. And over time, I realized that, you know, where I need to be, is focused on this, this space of email marketing and customer experience, through email, and, and specifically for monthly recurring revenue businesses. And it goes even further in that I like to work on life cycle emails, so onboarding, retention, reactivation and webinars, those kinds of campaigns, I don’t, I don’t like writing the one off emails, or the weekly newsletter updates, those aren’t for me, I like the campaigns where you can really see people move through an entire customer journey on that campaign. And that’s, that’s the kind of work that I do best. And so that’s basically all I do now.

 

 

Erno: That’s great. And I have written anything down from Phillip Morgan’s, I will put the link in the show notes, because I think there was an important tip that you gave there.

 

 

Val: Yeah. And he, he teaches specialization for developers. But I knew that I could replace the word developer with marketer and, and still learn hand. So if you’re willing to do that, then then. And, you know, I think that that’s something that’s really important as a an entrepreneur, and probably just as a human being willing to learn from other scenarios, and knowing like, what word to replace, right? You know, we, I teach yoga, and

we say, all the time in the yoga studio, that if there’s a word here that you don’t like that, that doesn’t speak to you, if, if a yoga teacher is talking about the universe, but you’re particularly religious, and so you can replace the word the universe with God, and then that, then it works for you, and being open enough to just making that tiny switch and something and so that it works for you then do it and I knew I could replace developer with marketer and it paid off in the long run.

 

Erno: So I think that my guess is that you paying attention to to interaction with people and community is also one of the things that you that that started work at Mama

 

 

Val: Yeah, yeah. So I started that organization. Well, a couple of friends of mine and started it. And I had a different different local organization. And we just kind of merged things together. And I knew that as a new mom and who was working and in a unusual situation, I wasn’t going to an office and

didn’t have that kind of regular camaraderie. I needed something. And I needed a place to work. But I also needed support for my kids. And so just being able to connect with other moms who do to do work in similar ways, and have young kids and the challenges that come with that that was something that was really important to me. And we haven’t, maybe it’s a byproduct of having kids and, and having our own businesses that we run, we haven’t had a lot of events or activity with that that group recently. But it definitely is a heart project, you know,

 

Erno: So to be clear, it is

an opportunity or network for co working with other women.

 

 

Val: Yeah, we Yeah, I mean, that that was the intention when it started. And we’ve it’s been kind of evolving, and, you know, we have events for other moms, and

just creating the then based on the needs of the community. So if they need a Saturday afternoon event, where it’s just moms, and we can provide babies and the kids can all hang out together, and sometimes their speakers, sometimes it’s just for working on whatever you need to get done for the day. But yeah, it’s really evolving based on what the community needs.

 

 

Erno: But I I maybe it was my mind, I thought about a co working space, but it’s not it’s not that.

 

 

 

Val: Oh, yeah, it was at one point, but that that just didn’t, there’s a lot of red regulations and red tape with those kinds of things. So especially when kids are involved. So I know we moved away from that.

 

 

Erno: Yeah, I I also read one of your posts think it was in your blog about that you stopped doing promotional posts?

 

Val: Oh, yeah. I even for my business.

 

 

Erno: Yeah. And you’ve placed it with a statement of work. I think that sounds very interesting to me.

 

 

Val: Oh, yeah. So essentially, they’re the kind of the same thing, a statement of work is a proposal with the terms and conditions attached to it. So it’s a combination of a proposal and a contract. And,

and it it allows the customer to sign off on it right away. So they can they can read through everything,

all of its right there, there’s no Oh, okay. Yes, accept the proposal, okay, here’s a contract. Except that, okay, I’ll send that back. That’s too many opportunities for them to change their mind, right. Whereas if the statement of work, they’re getting everything all together there, it’s right there, they can sign it, send it back. And it’s done that and the payment form of payment, and it all taken care of, there’s not a lot of back and forth. And I found that to be really, really successful in moving clients through the customer journey.

 

 

Erno:   In the previous podcast, I’ve been talking to Peter, and he uses another method that also been talking about with, with potential up with a number of entrepreneurs, he’s when he’s with the client talking about the, the, the, the project that they’re working on, and he’s doing training, coaching, he, he, he draws the whole process on the whiteboard or flip over, then he puts the wise down and whatever discussion comes up. And he pointed that the client has not sure they, they elaborate on that. And it’s a goal. So it also goes on the paper and any anti makes a photo and then he sends out a standard contract with the photo. And, and that’s it. So you don’t need to make proposals, long written proposals. And the client sees the photo. And again, again, and room discussion remembers the points that we talked about, and the price they actually have already agreed upon in the meeting. And I found that a really smart way of avoiding as a entrepreneur business owner to make to go back to your office and make a proposal and then send it to the customer. And even if you have like, the whole package together like a statement work, it is all written down. Now. It’s it is often it’s, it’s, it’s something different than they expected when they were talking to you.

 

 

Val: I love that. And, you know, I think there is something to

to that kind of handwritten style. I know, I’ve definitely when we’re talking about

when I was doing more kind of generalized marketing stuff, I would sketch out a wireframe on a piece of paper and take a picture of that and send it to the to the client as opposed to then getting into some kind of wire framing tool or trying to turn it into something on my computer, I would just take a picture of that, or I have an app called Scannell that looks like it was scanned in, you know, so I can so it’s still on my phone in a essentially I’m taking a picture, but it makes it look like it was something scanned in and and I’ll send that and and it almost comes across better. Like, oh, yeah, you were really listening. You actually took the time to do this, there’s so many templates and pre done things out there on on different software’s that a client might think like, Oh, this is a template that was copied and pasted from someone else. But if you hand drew it, it’s clearly for you. So there is something to that, that hand drawn element. I like that idea of, you know, kind of just shooting over your notes and having that be attached to a contract. I like that.

 

Erno: Yeah, and I agree, I think it is, it is, like you said, If you make this drawing or hand write something down, it becomes very personal. And that’s, I think that’s it is so you because the personal connection with people I think, I think is very

wanted today, especially with all the online communication going on, and having just more connection, it people are looking for that.

 

Val: Yeah, exactly. And that’s what I do in in the email side of things, too, is like, how do we create a more personal connection and not make it so, so standardized or a cold or about, you know, closing the sale, but I’m creating a connection with people so that they feel like they matter. And they’re not just one of, you know, thousands of customers. Okay,

 

Erno:

I have a couple of questions. And we only have five minutes. Yeah,

 

I saw that you have a really nice series going on your blog about these tear downs of onboarding email sequences. Well, how does that work for you? Do you get the do you do you see that people are attracted to that and that potential clients come from it

 

Val: yeah it’s so funny people ask me about these tear downs all the time. And I yeah, I started doing them because I saw a need

for better emails I didn’t I didn’t have a lot of client work to show for for what I could do. So I had a couple of clients but I felt like well I need to show people more what I can actually do and I was kind of inspired by mas had these whiteboard Fridays so they did and I was kind of inspired by that to say like, Well how can I do my version of that and and so I picked a couple companies and signed up for their email list got all their onboarding emails and or lack thereof and and then you know, share my my commentary and added added emails. I’ve written Swype copy on my blog. I have said what works and what doesn’t work. And yes, every time I publish a tear down, I have someone else who’s interested in working with me,

the there’s only been one tear down that I’ve done that the client had that that company has actually hired me. And they didn’t hire me until about nine months later. So it took some time and relationship building. But you know, if you do tear downs properly,

then you’re not burning bridges. You’re not making anybody mad. You know, I do mind with respect. And again, going back to what we talked about at the beginning, sharing value. So I know that when I do that, I’m, I’m only building relationships and not tearing them down. So that’s, that’s why I do that is to show an initially I did them to show what I was capable of. And then in doing that, I gained new clients. And now I have this portfolio of real work. But I also have the tear downs that are like, yeah, you could, you could hire me and I could put that into place. And then some and and other companies get inspiration from them. So I’m happy to to, to know that they’re, they’re working, even if they aren’t working on the company that I wrote it about.

 

Erno: Hmm, I agree. I did. I did a similar thing for quite some time. I think it’s like 50 videos and also tear downs and on how their funnel it’s working. But yeah, now the funnel is not my focus anymore. So I stopped doing those. And actually, I also take took them down from from YouTube and anything so that because it doesn’t support my work today, anyway.

 

Val: Yeah, you do have to do some some cleanup of things that don’t work anymore when you change your areas. Yeah, I’m

 

 

Ermo: okay. So So you’ve decided at some point, you’re going to completely focus on what you’re doing today? And how did you build up your pricing? Because today, you have a strategy, which is close to $3,000 for a full day working with you, how did you how did you build up to this price

 

 

Val: and all when I started offering day rates, and at the time, I was kind of just taking like, an a rough hourly rate and multiplying it by the number of hours I was doing. And even then, I think my original day rate was think it was like 1400 or something like that. So it wasn’t insignificant, but I figured at and even then it was more than my kind of hourly rate, because that would be a pretty high hourly rate. But I and you know, My days are six hours, it’s, it’s a six hour block. It’s not some 10 hour thing or anything. And sometimes people ask me about that. And I’m like, you don’t want my work after six hours. You know,

it’s like when people asked me, if I can squeeze them into my calendar, I’m like, you don’t want you don’t want my work. If they are squeezed in, that’s not going to be the best of me that you’re going to get. So I started off with what felt slightly uncomfortable and people paid it. And I was happy to, to find that even when I pushed my my own personal limits of what I was comfortable charging people paid it and they were happy with the results. And, you know, I stayed with the particular rate for a couple of months. And then I slowly increased it over time. And now it’s, like you said, just under $3,000 for a day rate, and for a single full day, and,

you know, I am still booked out, I’m booked through December now.

 

Yeah, it sounds like I need to write Yeah, I I feel comfortable with the price Where is my clients are, are happy with where it is. And I also do projects to so the day rates are just like a way to hire me. And the other thing is that the day rates are a bit of a done with you. So there’s no like hard and fast deliverable at the end of a day rates like, well, this is what I’ll be working on, here’s what we’re aiming for. But, you know, we might not get all when I get all five emails written, you might have an outline, you know, I have three of the five written at the end of the day and outline of the other two. So it’s a little bit more of a done with you. And and guidance and strategy is the most important. And then implementation is kind of like the last thing on the list in day rates. So, so yeah, it’s just a little bit different way of working and, and that way we’re able to work together sooner as well. Because projects right now I’m booking three months out. So whereas day rates, it’s a little bit sooner that I can fit people in,

 

 

Erno: right, so to close to to have a nice close to this conversation, do you have a trick to help people to

go through their personal boundaries for setting pricing that that feel very uncomfortable,

 

Val: find a group of people that you trust, like a small group, and you know whether that’s a couple of friends or a very small Facebook group or something like that, where you can say, Hey, here’s a I’m thinking about, I would say, take your if you run an hourly rate, and

I let’s say, take your hourly rate, and multiply it by the number of hours that you’re going to do. So let’s say you have $100 an hour rate. And so multiplying that by six makes it a $600 day rate? Well, the $600 for a day feel like that makes sense for you. And if you’re used to hourly work, it probably does. But I would challenge you to see what would happen if you double that.

So instead of it being $100, make it 200 and times six is 1200, and then go to your small group and say, here’s what I’m going to offer this day rate of 1200 dollars, here’s the the work that I will do within that time frame and thinking about the value that you’re providing. I mean, that’s the most important thing in the in any work that you do is what’s the value you’re providing on the other end? And how will that person continue to get value long after that those six hours are up and so if you’re a copywriter and you write sales page copy, I mean, is that person going to turn around and sell $30,000 and in product when at the end of the day, when they’ve just paid you 1200 bucks, I think it’s a pretty good value in that case. So, you know, putting it out there testing that that value over time. And then like I said, you know, raising your rates when things start to go well, and people are coming back and I did for my existing clients. I gave them six months to continue to pay the old rates so I let them know hey,

 

Okay. You dropped out just Yeah, but I understood that you gave them six months and then you in front and you were gone to the new pricing. That’s that is really smart because I was really scared of using that technique. But I will I will. Yeah, we’ll use it

 

give them a heads up and and then also an encouragement for them to book with you. Right? Oh, well, I want to get in on their schedule before the prices go up. So let me let me get that booked and paid for. So it’s a great way to get some business in the books.

 

Erno: I’ll let you go as soon can now.

 

 

 

Follow

About the Author

Erno is de Business Coach voor ondernemers met 5-25 medewerkers. Ik help ondernemers bij zelfzuchtige beslissingen voor meer vrijheid. Mijn unieke eigenschap is om lastige vragen te stellen en je richting actie te duwen. Erno is auteur van 7 boeken, 1000+ artikelen en host van de podcast de Erno Hannink Show. Lees meer over Erno

Leave a Comment:

Leave a Comment: