Do your clients truly value your work, allowing you to charge what you’re worth, and trusting you to do more for them?
You may think you’re describing your work’s true value in conversations with clients, when you’re really not. They may not be getting it.
If you don’t think they place enough significance on what you do, it may be because you’re not communicating well enough — and if that’s the case, you can’t blame them for not knowing.
It’s not your clients, it’s you.
This takes digging and thinking and putting some meat on the bones of how you talk to clients. It may be more you, ahem, than them.
Take a look at these five ways you may be talking about your work that stop clients from placing more value on it:
1.) You may be doing work you don’t believe in. If you’re not well placed in your work or if you’ve chosen the wrong niche — if you really feel you should be a dog trainer instead of the copywriter you are (but you became a copywriter because it was the path of least resistance), or if you should be working with authors instead of executives — it’s going to show in your work. It’s going to show in the way to talk about how you serve your clients. And it’s not going to sound as valuable as you think it does.
You’ve got to be passionate about what you do in order to interest people in working with you — you’ve got to be so passionate that they can’t help but see the value in it. If you can’t be passionate about your work, find a way to be passionate about the way you deliver it.
2.) You may be offering what you think your clients need instead of what they actually want. People value what they want, not what you think they need — it’s that simple. The first rule of marketing success is to find a starving market, not to provide something and then talk people into buying it. Do you know what your clients really want?
3. You may be talking from your point of view instead of your client’s. Things often look very different from the client’s point of view — have you put yourself in his shoes? Have you put your offer in language that shows you understand what he’s up against? I love the C.S. Lewis quote, “What you see and hear depends a good deal on where you’re standing.” Yeah, and the same goes for what you value.
4. You may be doing what everyone else is doing, or saying what everyone else is saying. Do you blend in with the crowd? Does your message sound exactly like your competitors’ messages? Do you “exceed customer expectations” or help your clients “get to the next level,” “live the life of their dreams,” or blah blah blah blah blah . . . Nobody values that stuff. Heck, no one even hears it anymore.
5. You may be telling them what you are instead of what you can do for them. Do you tell people you’re a coach or a web designer and leave it at that? Very few clients are looking for people with titles. Most clients are looking for solutions to their problems, results, transformations, or things that will make them feel great.
If you think you’re doing pretty well on this list and your clients still don’t value what you do, well, it may be time to look elsewhere in the client pool. Or find something else to do that people will value.