Over spring break, I was on a scuba diving trip with my son. It was his first open water dive since being certified. After the dive, we took our gear to the car, and I returned to the boat. There is always a lot of gear to get off the boat after a trip (dive tanks, rental gear, coolers, etc.). I grabbed a couple of dive tanks from the dock and started walking them to the company’s truck, so they take them back to the shop. Apparently, not everyone does this as one of the boat crew said, “You’re on vacation, you don’t have to carry dive tanks, that’s what you pay us for”, to which I replied, “I’m on vacation from my work, not from carrying dive tanks.”
As we finished unloading and talking, I said that I wasn’t paying them to carry dive tanks (that doesn’t take much skill or knowledge), what I was really paying for was for them to keep us safe and make sure we had a good experience and to pick a good dive site for the day given the weather conditions. It was my first open water dive in a long time and my giant stride off the back of the boat wasn’t my best causing me to hit the water at a bit of an angle. That coupled with a horseshoe BCD (buoyancy control device) which was different than those I’ve used in the past left me with a mouthful of 65 degree salt water. As others gathered at the front of the boat, I needed a moment to catch my breath. One of the boat crew recognized this immediately and asked if I was OK and gave me some advice about the BCD.
My entry for the second dive was better but my son was cold (we should have added another wet suit layer) so he opted out of the second dive soon after getting into the water. I proceeded knowing that the boat crew would help him back on the boat, get him warmed up and give him a snack. On both dives the visibility was low so the dive master kept the group close together and because she knew the area well made sure we could see the sights despite the low visibility. There are a lot of things I was paying for that morning, but schlepping dive gear was at the bottom of the list. It goes without saying that I am a big fan of Florida Underwater Sports in Sarasota, FL.
The last time I called my plumber, it wasn’t because I couldn’t fix the leak under the sink myself. He knew I could and actually started our call by giving me advice on how to fix it. But a quick fix for him would have been a couple of hours and more than one trip to Home Depot for me. After he gave me a couple of repair options on how I could fix it, I said “I have a better idea. Why don’t you come by and fix it?” He said, “I’ll see you Monday afternoon.” Yes, I was paying him to fix the leak but what I was really paying for was to clear my Saturday morning for something more enjoyable.
When we have groceries delivered at the start of our annual ski trip, what we are really paying for is the ability to hit the slopes earlier in the day by skipping the grocery store on the way to the condo.
So, ask yourself, when your customers choose your product or service, what are they REALLY paying for? Are you making it clear to everyone the benefit (not the features) of your product or service? And are you pricing accordingly. A good dive experience, a free Saturday morning, and hitting the slopes early are each worth a lot more than carrying dive tanks, fixing a leak, or going to the grocery store. Know the benefits you deliver; price accordingly.
If your business could benefit from fractional CFO services, I would welcome the chance to speak with you. Please give me a call at (314) 863-6637 or send an email to [email protected]
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