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Print Professionals blogger

Print Confessions

By Graphic Arts Professionals

About Print

Print Confessions is brought to you by Bill Farquharson and Kelly Mallozzi. Each week, read the thoughts of a different graphic arts professional who will share a point of view that can only be written anonymously, and then join in the conversation by posting a comment.
 

Get Off the Pricing Merry-go-round

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I am selling printing...Or, am I?

Internet price lists, commodity pricing, reverse auctions, last look, poor specifications, unanswered questions, apples-to-oranges comparisons...frustration and wasted effort!

Many of us wish we could simply pull a number off a predetermined price sheet and be done with it. How much do I give away? How much do I cut into the profit we need to run our company and put food on my table? UGGGGGH!

So, I can be frustrated, throw up my hands and tell my boss that I just can’t win. Our prices are too high!

Or…

I can understand that some print actually does fit these seemingly ridiculous models. But me personally, I get no satisfaction from sitting in front of some Web portal, robot like, probably not even knowing what the person on the other end even looks like. What should that matter?

But wait, I am successful! As I reflect further, I realize that my core base of followers doesn’t practice these tactics. While they may be getting prices from several or just a few providers, I always feel as though I am aware of what’s going on. I always feel as though I have an opportunity to win that piece of business.

I have a relationship with the buyer, the company, the C-Level staff and all of those involved. I understand what they sell, their goals, their needs and how I can bring value to their daily existence. I don’t hesitate to ask tough questions and not hope to get answers, but expect answers. I offer suggestions, ideas, methods of reaching the same goals that may be a little different.

In short, they are my friends as well as my customers, bringing great satisfaction to my day in every interaction—good, bad and even in losing the job. It is the ease of doing business with me and my company that brings them back.

So, do I sell printing or remarkable service? I think the latter.

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