I am traveling through Oklahoma today, coming from Chicago yesterday – it’s been a busy week. Yesterday I was talking with a sales person and the issue of assessments came up…Should you be discounting your assessments? This has come up several times in the past week with sales people I am coaching – getting hit with budget cuts and pressure to discount, or possibly a request to delay the project altogether, can create some unnatural reactions. Now is not the time to exhibit a lack of confidence by begging for meetings or giving away high-end services.
While there are times that I recommend giving away an assessment, for instance as part of an executive level event (under very strict guidelines which I will cover in my podcast series), assessments should not be given away or even discounted as a normal course of action. Differentiation and value come primarily through your intellectual capital (IC), not product sales. Save discounts for commoditized product offerings; charge a premium for IC. If your IC isn’t worth much, improve it.
Our new economy demands differentiation and justification. Justification is built through the Four Things Buyers BuyTM, which generally comes through some type of analysis or assessment (See November 28th Podcast – Boardroom Conversations). Resist the temptation to cave in on high-value offerings built on IC. Instead focus your efforts on areas such as the exponential growth in Cybercrime and leverage these trends to drive your assessment business. Once in, you’ll have plenty of justification to continue on through remediation and managed services offerings.