The “Everything for less then a Dime” market is fully saturated.
Starbucks is offering lower prices and free Wi-Fi.
“Free” “Lower Prices” “Huge Discounts” are the mantra of the business world. Why?
We have been told that “If you are not the cheapest then you are losing customers.” That is why the American and world economy are shedding employees like water off of a ducks back. Business today is racing to the BOTTOM of the money ladder. Shed employees, no more airline food, “Please hang up your towel if you want to reuse it” all in an effort to reduce costs and stay at the bottom end of the price scale.
People are simply jaded now. In 2001, in the wake of 9/11 and desperate to jump start the market Ford Motor Co. introduced something absolutely unheard of…employee pricing. ‘You buy the car for what we buy the car” was the advertising used. People went insane. For the next 30 days Fords sales numbers went through the roof. GM, Chrysler, Toyota and Honda “sniffed” at the stupidity of this move saying “We would never devalue our product this way.”
Ford did it again the next month and GM and Chrysler grudgingly went along. Happy days were here again! Sale numbers were record breaking. Fords numbers were up over 40%.
Funny thing though. You can’t keep giving away your product for little to know profit so the pricing ended. And so did the sales. I was in those Ford stores during this disaster. People said, “No. I’ll wait. You will put those prices back up again.” Also, the manufacturers pulled the next 90 to 120 days of customers into a 30 day span. So there were no more catch-able fish in the sea. They were “too small” and not ready to be caught yet. So the choice became, lower the cost again or manufacturers had to wait for more buyers to come back into the market. They waited.
It happened again in 2009 with the stupid “Cash for Clunkers” fiasco. In another ill-conceived effort to help the market the government paid up to $4500 for what was considered “gas-guzzlers.” Again sales were record in August. But not in July. Since the government advertised this for months ahead of time customers sat out of the market until the deal came live. Then after CFC ended the customer went away again. They artificially pulled 90 days of customers ahead and killed sales for the rest of the year. Another “unforeseen” affect was that by pulling $3000 to $4000 cars out of the market, the market that struggling people, students shop in for their cars, the market skyrocketed and these garbage cars became priced out of reach for struggling families. The market is just now starting to recover.
A new strategy is needed. Don’t sell on price. Sell what is scarce.
1. Beauty. Beauty is something that is timeless and always needed. Internal beauty and External beauty is important. Are you healthy? The boomers are retiring, they are going to live for years and want to be able to enjoy their savings and their freedom.
Have you considered an industry that caters to this market? Travel, health care, businesses, supplements and retirement homes are all going to explode for the next 30 years. The boomers are wealthy and young. They want to stay both. So these markets are not NOT cost oriented they are VALUE oriented.
Are you able to solve a concern for this market? Then price it accordingly.
2. Change. Businesses are frightened to death and are hunkered down scared to make a move. If you can show a business a smart move to make, a “change” that will be beneficial in this current economy, the world will beat a path to your door.
Many people and business would be happy to make a move if there was someone to hold there hand.
The market is unlimited.
If you are a current business, give the customer what NO ONE ELSE is offering ( better customer service, free delivery, free advice online…) but stop dropping your price.
Be different. Stop being cheap.
In my consulting firm I promise to be at the customers business open to close, everyday. I don’t take 2 hours lunches or check out at 3. I have run snow plows and closed deals, fired people and answered phones. I have set up social marketing programs. I have traveled to remote Afghan provinces and run a snake in a customers home. But I DON’T negotiate price.
Think outside the price box.