Language to Use When the Buyer Asks About Fees

Language to Use When the Buyer Asks About Fees

• I have no idea, but I can give you some options and ranges as soon as tomorrow if I can ask you a few questions now.

• It would be unfair to you for me to cite any fee without understanding your needs and the scope of your expectations. I want to consider what I can do to most effectively minimize your investment while maximizing your return on it.

• Let’s look at value and impact, to see if the project makes sense to you. If so, we can talk about fees in that context.

• I don’t have fee schedules or time-based rates, because they’re unethical. After all, you’re best served by a quick solution, but a time-based consultant is best served by a slow solution. We should be partners, not competitors.

• I realize that past consultants have probably charged you by the hour or day, and that’s why you need me at this point.

• My fees are based on my contribution to the results you agree will be generated by this project, with a dramatic return on investment for you and equitable compensation for me.

• You’re not going to make a decision this afternoon, and I’ll have the complete proposal in front of you by tomorrow. You’ll be able to see your options in the context of the entire project that quickly.

• I don’t provide discounts for “exposure” or to “get in the door.” Do you do that with your customers? If you don’t, why would I? If you do, then you need me more than you can imagine!

© Alan Weiss 2011. All rights reserved.

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5 Responses to Language to Use When the Buyer Asks About Fees

  1. Jose says:

    It’s all about value-based fees. Results not deliverables!

  2. Lew Sauder says:

    This post does seem to point to value-based pricing. I’d be interested in a follow-up post on how you communicate pricing to clients based on value. Do you define parameters around measuring the value on an on-going basis or estimate what the value will be up front?

  3. This is excellent. It’s one thing to have a concept; it’s another thing to have the language to express it.

  4. Alan Weiss says:

    You need to read my books, or past entries on this blog. I’m not going to write five pages on value based fees here. Read Million Dollar Consulting, Value Based Fees, or The Consulting Bible. Or try the free articles on my web site.

  5. Jose says:

    Lew, read Million $ Consulting, chapter 9 – Stop Thinking That Time Is Money. But, I think you’d be more interested in 40 ways to raise fees on page 194.

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