One thing I have discovered over the last few years developing my business in the fitness industry is that Cost and Value are too completely different things.  Not just what I charge for my service but how I invest my money to better myself, my business and my service or even what I spend my own money on.

For example I would have changed my car every two years on the button and probably paid more than I could afford on monthly rentals, at the time it was what I found value in. Now when I think about buying a new car I ask myself what will it bring me I don’t already have.

I use this question regularly when considering an investment in my business.  Am I considering purchasing something as others will think it looks good or does it really bring me value.

Coaches or personal trainers have contacted me enquiring about the price of a shoot and I have been too expensive for them which I understand as my price is not determined by the market average, it is determined by the worth I place on my work and its potential to benefit someone’s else business.  It is based on the amount of effort, time and hardwork I have put in to honing my skills, the many times I gone out of my comfort zone to continually improve. So just because I do not fit into everyone’s budget does not mean I will drop my prices. That being said I am sure there has been occasions when I have been too expensive for a coach and they have 4 times the cost of a shoot in new trainers at the bottom of their wardrobe.  I am not sure a fresh pair of kicks ever got anyone a new client.

I have reinvested back to into business to develop my service and I will be honest a few times I was worried I was paying a lot of money for something I wouldn’t see an immediate return on, although that was down to doubt in myself and my potential but also I didn’t yet know the value in developing my knowledge and the positives mentorship would bring.  Not only have I made my money back on my business investments within the year but I have gained knowledge and personal attributes that will benefit me for years to come in my business and generate me additional income for me to reinvest again.

To charge quality we must first display quality

We can consider this when weighing up the worth of a shoot.  What do you get from say a coaching shoot?  Professional magazine standard quality images that show potential clients here is someone who is willing to invest in themselves and their business to better their service.  Say that shoot is the equivalent of 10 sessions, used correctly there is easily enough potential to generate enough business to cover that initial investment.

How do you justify increasing your prices when there is no visible reinvestment in your business.

The time came for me to update my website, my previous was so out of date I refused to tell people what it was. Now I had a decision to make, do I attempt to design and build it myself to save money like I did last time and make a half arsed job of it or do I be practical about it and consider is my time better spent doing what I am better at.  Knowing roughly what my hourly rate is I quickly decided it would be more cost effective letting someone who is very good at what they do do what I am not good at.  I will not waste time checking out new website designs, new features, finding out what SEO is, procrastinating over small details that don’t really matter. No I will spend my time taking and editing photos because that is what I am good at and where I make money. So I get an amazing new site without it getting in the way of where I am most productive and save my time and money in the end.

Price was the first thing I considered but then I had to consider quality and time.  Which of these three principals was most important to my business. QUALITY, TIME or PRICE. Quality comes first for me because to charge quality we must first display quality and I take immense pride in the quality of my work. Then TIME, as they say time is money and how I spend mine is an integral part of my business and the quality of service I provide. Then comes COST!! Although money or value are the main factors behind both Quality and Time it is not the same as COST.  COST doesn’t not determine quality or time. When deciding to use a web designer I knew the quality would be there, it would save me time and although it would cost me money up front but would save me and make me money in the long run.

So I ask anyone thinking about working with me to consider the quality of my work first, if you believe the quality or the value of my work does not warrant the cost I understand and we are probably not a good fit.

I want to work with people that are serious about their business and the quality of their content