Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Happy to Lose the Race to the Bottom

How many times has a client asked me, "I got a lower quote, would you like to beat it?"

I got the call today from a long time client. They have been truly wonderful for almost eight years, giving me lots of interesting T Shirt printing work and paying on time. It's been a productive, win-win relationship.

They have some new talent to promote, new shirts to print, and some new management in the mix. It's always tough to keep an account when management changes, but I always try.

I do not let my clients dictate the price at which I will work. I am selling quality and service, and I do not compete on price. Thus, every time I am asked to win the race to the bottom of the price barrell, I politely decline. That's what I did today.

There is nothing more corrosive to a small business operator like myself than trying to win the race to the bottom. If you win, you lose, because you will be pissed off as you work, to say the least, and when you account for all the extra time, materials, hassles and details of doing top quality work, you probably are LOSING MONEY on the low fee deal.

So, no thank you, I do not care to beat my competitor's price--or to let a client dictate the terms under which I do business. If a competitor wants to work that cheap, that is their problem. My condolences to them for winning the race to the bottom.

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