Last week, at Bliss & Bespoke, Tara Guérard told a story about an entrepreneur and a client. The client had asked an entrepreneur for advice, and the entrepreneur responded by whipping together a solution in ten minutes. Thrilled, the client asked how much she owed the entrepreneur, and the entrepreneur replied: $10,000. Shocked, the client exclaimed, “What? That only took you ten minutes!” “No,” the entrepreneur replied, “that took me ten years.”
One of the most frequented posts on this blog is Charge What You’re Worth and Don’t Apologize, but it’s advice I have such a hard time personally swallowing. I’ve had numerous requests for full branding packages lately, and it’s so tempting to put together a few packages and accept a few new clients.
To be honest, though, the thing I have the most trouble communicating is my value. It’s hard to communicate over a decade of wholesale business, eight years in the retail arena, four years of parenting, at least three years of massive web development lessons, print knowledge, branding knowledge, and countless business and self-help books read, analyzed, and dissected. I know what I NEED to charge, but finding the courage to charge that is another story.
Communication happens when there is meaning and emotional connection present, and that’s a side of myself I have to nurture. I normally lean towards logic, not emotion, which means I quantify and analyze things. Good for product development, bad for marketing. Good for listing features and benefits, bad creating emotional connection.
Whipping together a few branding packages is not a good way to nurture meaning and connection. Taking the time to understand what potential clients need is an investment well spent.
Instead of accepting new branding projects, I’ve committed this year to my Authenticate14 crew, and I want the best part of my brain and ideas to go to them. Last week I spent a great deal of time at Bliss & Bespoke, doing one-on-one consultations with wedding professionals. This year is about emotional connection (easy for some of you, hard for me). I’m trusting that taking the time to invest in others will open doors at some point in time in the future.
Quite simply, it is not about the money, after all.