how to respond when someone says you are too expensive
As an artist, a professional, and an expert, you deserve to get paid a premium price when you sell a premium product or service! Here’s how to respond when someone says you are too expensive.
“Can I get a discount?”
“That’s not in my budget right now.”
“Why is it so expensive?”
“I know someone who does it way cheaper.”
Let me just immediately ruin your morning because don’t those four lines feel like a colossal F U to your expertise?! You make sure to research best practices and ethics, you stay up to date on current trends and techniques, you invest your personal time into education, you do your absolute best to make every single damn client experience phenomenal, and THIS IS HOW YOU’RE THANKED?!
It really blows to put your heart, soul, and gluteus maximus into making your offer the most valuable it can possibly be only to hear “you’re too expensive” when it’s time to talk about the moolah.
I’m bringing attention to this yucky, insulting feeling today because I’ve been seeing Instagram Reels and TikToks of truly talented entrepreneurs talking, singing, and dancing about the reasons why their prices are so expensive:
Because it takes them hours and hours. Because they use top quality tools and ingredients. Because they’ve spent thousands of dollars on education. Because their cost of doing business is so high. Because their professional equipment is really expensive. Because software and taxes and licenses and fees and all of the other costs add up really quickly.
FREE BEER! Oh hey, just wanted to get your attention back ‘cause I’m pretty sure you skimmed over that last paragraph. You got a little bit bored reading it, right?
That’s because it is, in fact, boring. Nobody wants to hear about that stuff, yo! Your cost of doing business is none of your clients’ concern, and honestly it has nothing to do with them. Your marketing isn’t about you; it’s always about your clients.
There is absolutely something to be said about educating your audience. But if you’re going that route, share the benefits of why your prices are so high, not why your prices are so high. Let’s look at a few examples of how to respond when someone says you are too expensive:
My wholesaler charges $3 for long-stem roses because they’re a premium flower, so I need to charge at least $6 in order to make a decent profit.
As a floral designer who believes in quality, I stock long-stem roses because they’re a premium flower! They’re cultivated to grow the biggest blooms in the most vibrant colors, and you’ll be amazed how long they last in a vase.
Here’s another example of how to respond when someone says you are too expensive:
My color correction service costs $500 because it takes me 6-8 hours, I use a ton of supplies, and I attend workshops every year to stay updated on the most modern techniques.
As a color correction client, you can rest assured I’ll do everything in my power to give you your dream color! I only take one color correction client a day to ensure I have enough time to blend every single strand of hair. I only use industry-approved formulas and always make sure to stay updated on the most modern and beautiful color techniques.
Can you feel the difference? The first ones are CRINGE-CITY. They almost feel defensive and really put the importance on the business owner. The second ones focus on the consumer – it feels like they have our best interest at heart.
But client education aside, you should not be expending energy justifying your prices – your brand should be doing that for you. Potential customers should understand immediately upon stumbling on your Instagram feed or website or blog post or landing page whether they’re your type of client and you’re their type of business. They should get the feeling of luxury or affordability or creativity or serenity or boldness or romance or adventure or whatever it is your brand is all about.
You don’t need to prove you’re worthy of accepting money from your ideal clients – your time is FAR better spent producing alluring content that reinforces the feelings you want your brand to communicate.