FREE EPISODE WORKSHEET:
MAP YOUR CONTENT TO YOUR REVENUE PILLARS
#51: Paul Klein is a pricing and positioning expert who helps executives leverage their expertise to start and scale a 7-figure consulting business.
In this episode we cover the biggest pricing mistake you’re probably making right now, how to figure out the true value of the products and services you’re offering, and what the three best strategies are for getting people to pay you what you’re worth.
Paul also shares the three pillars of business that will get you out of feast or famine and into steady exponential growth.
And we’ve put together a special worksheet just for this episode that will help you make sure the content you’re creating is fueling each pillar of your business.
So, after you listen to this episode, remember to go to contentheroes.com/worksheet51 to download your pillars worksheet right away.
If you’re ready to work less for more money and start charging what you’re worth, you’ll definitely want to stick around for the rest of this episode.
FREE EPISODE WORKSHEET:
MAP YOUR CONTENT TO YOUR REVENUE PILLARS
Podcast Episode Summary
In this episode, you’ll learn:
- Why success in business doesn’t happen overnight;
- Paul’s 3 pillars of revenue: consulting, having a strong online presence, and training;
- How to lean into your expertise to avoid underpricing;
- The way to position yourself as the best option in your niche;
- Why you should first offer your best service to clients;
- About Paul’s podcast and why podcasts are the perfect platform for entrepreneurs.
Everybody’s an overnight success, right? You just all of a sudden get on top of the mountain, everything’s great, just start there, and everything’s perfect… No, it’s been a 10-year process to get where I’m at, and I still don’t look at myself as some guru success thing. I just do what I do and I always continue to learn. (2:18)
I think I made about $60,000 on the side to my full-time job, and I said “okay, if I can do this full-time, I know I can get enough revenue to match what I’m making in my corporate job.” (4:39)
Base consulting, that’s your high-end, one-on-one, and it takes a lot of your personal time… You should be compensated as such for that because it involves a lot of your time. True wealth is discretionary time. If you’re not charging a premium for your time, then you’re not going to have that time with your family and so forth. (8:08)
The number-one thing I see [in people who are new to pricing their goods or services] is they all undervalue their price and their services. They pretty much think “okay, what comes easy to me must not be valuable.” They just assume that. I get it. When you’re first starting out, you are an imposter because you haven’t done it yet, but that’s okay. You lean into it as you embrace the direction that you’re going, but also realize that you do have some expertise. (11:14)
Realize people don’t buy time, they buy outcomes, transformation, and results. If you’re charging for time, you’re billing by the hour, then you are commoditizing yourself. You’re limiting the amount of income. Even if you charge $1,000 an hour, that’s still only $8,000 for a day’s work. I’ve got contracts for $45,000 for a day’s work, and it’s because I position myself for value to the client. (13:30)
Always use pricing options. If you notice, when you go to the carwash, Starbucks, or buy a SaaS product, there’s always at least 3 products… We typically as solopreneurs, freelancers, consultants, will just provide one price, and what that’s doing is giving clients an ultimatum. (19:38)
Always start off with your high anchor. Offer your Bentley service. If you don’t offer the Bentley, no one’s ever going to buy it. (21:10)
We all want to raise our prices, but we’re scared to. By using the pricing options, you can provide that high option, that high Bentley product, and that kind of stretches you. Each time you do one of these, incrementally over time, your value starts to go up. (25:31)
For me, I’m not a blogger, I’m not a very good writer. As I mentioned to you before, I don’t have a degree, so I guess I have some flaws and my English isn’t as good, but my voice and being able to explain and talk to people on a podcast is a great form for me. (30:15)
We are in a monumental shift from the way we used to be. It used to be institutions, large organizations; go to work with 100 people at a company and then retire. It’s going back to the buggy whip days and the blacksmith days of the Wild West where everybody’s an independent, basically. (33:48)
Early on, I was so concerned with what people were going to think and everything, and I finally realized nobody cares about you. Nobody cares about us. The ones that do care will tune in and they’ll get value from it, so you don’t have to be too worried. (38:05)
Find out more about Paul Klein: https://www.paulklein.net
The Pricing is Positioning Podcast: https://www.paulklein.net/podcast.html
Find the worksheet for this episode here: https://contentheroes.com/worksheet51
Content Heroes 051 - How to Position Yourself to Charge What You’re Worth, with Paul Klein
Paul Klein: [00:00:00] People don't buy time. They buy outcomes, transformation, and results. So if you're charging for time, you're billing by the hour, then you are commoditizing yourself. You're limiting the amount of income. Even if you charge a thousand dollars an hour, that's still only $8,000 for a day's work. Well, I've had contracts for $45,000 for a day's work.
And it's because I've positioned myself for value to the client.
Josiah Goff: [00:00:24] Welcome to content heroes, everyone. We're back with another great conversation to help you build a profitable business on your own terms. By creating content online. Our guest today is Paul Klein, a pricing and positioning expert who helps executives leverage their expertise to start and scale a seven figure consulting business.
We're going to cover the biggest pricing mistake you're probably making right now how to figure out the true value of the products and services you're offering and what the three best strategies are for getting people to pay you what you're worth.
Paul also shares the three pillars of business that will get you out of feast or famine and into steady, exponential growth.
And we've put together a special worksheet just for this episode that will help you make sure the content you're creating is fueling each pillar of your business.
So after you listened to this episode, remember to go to contentheroes.com/worksheet51, that's worksheet five one to download your pillars worksheet right away.
If you're ready to work less for more money and start charging what you're worth, you'll definitely want to stick around for the rest of this episode. So let's jump in.
You're listening to the content heroes podcast, where entrepreneurs and marketers and creatives share how they build profitable businesses on their own terms by creating content online.
And now your host, Josiah Goff.
Welcome to Content Heroes everyone. I'm here with. Paul Klein. Who's a business consultant and host of the pricing is positioning podcast and I'm super pumped for this conversation. Paul, thanks so much for being on the
Paul Klein: [00:01:54] Hey, thanks for having me on glad to be here.
Josiah Goff: [00:01:57] Awesome.
So before we dig into all things pricing, I'd love to hear a bit more about your story and how you got to where you are. You're at the point where you started multiple successful businesses, but you didn't start there. And so tell me about that transition from going from. The corporate world into the entrepreneurial world.
Paul Klein: [00:02:18] Yeah. Yeah. I mean, everybody's an overnight success, right? You just, all of a sudden get on the top of the mountain and everything. Great. Just start there. And everything's perfect. No, it's been a 10 year process to get where I'm at and I still don't look at myself as like some gurus success thing. I just.
Do what I do, and I always continue to learn, but if I take you back to 2009, I was in an 18 year career, $150,000 a year, full benefits in my hometown. I could almost walk to work three young kids, a mortgage payment. And if you remember in 2009, it was a lot like it is today with the market. Took a dive in late Oh eight.
So in early Oh nine, when I was talking about leaving my corporate job, My wife was like, I trust you and everything, but I'm just nervous. Just don't tell me when you quit your job. Just don't tell me I can't handle it. So I've been putting things in place in Oh eight and then early in Oh nine when I made the jump and then one day it was a weekend and we're planning out the week.
And my wife's like, Hey, I got an appointment on Monday. Can you talk to your boss? See if you can get. Get off a little early to pick up the kids from school. And I said, well, I can pick up the kids anytime you want. She's like, no, from that point on, we were, uh, you know, , she's always been self employed.
She's a hairstylist. So many years ago we put a hair salon in our home so she could stay home and work her schedule around her kids. She's been doing that for. My daughter is 25, so 25 plus years. And so I just, I was itching to get out of that corporate space. I was tired of forming a committee to make a decision and the politics and everything that went along with it.
But my life around my work, just to get a paycheck, as opposed to my business and my finances around my life that I wanted to live, which was a more free life, so forth. And again, one of the things I did early on was looked inward. I looked inward at what I was having struggles with, what was making me unhappy about being in that organization and so forth.
And I didn't blame the system. I didn't blame my employer. I realized, Hey, it's not fair to my employer for me to be here. So I looked inward, I realized I was an entrepreneur or stuck in a bureaucracy. And I was like, okay, I need to make a change here. And so I. Started studying business. And I had always dabbled in side consulting and freelancing, and I said, man, I think I can do this full time.
And so I started just kind of an exit plan and then the wife was like, do it, but don't tell me. And then that was when I got to a certain point financially, I made the jump. And then once I knew, I think I made about $60,000 on the side to my full time job. And I said, okay, if I can do this full time, I know I can get enough revenue to match what I'm making in my corporate job.
Yeah, off to the races, you know, then hit the six figures and then mid six figures and high six figures and started another business. And if you combine both of those at seven figures, so done real well over the last 10 years, work with a lot of fortune 500 companies, a lot of the brands that you know, and one of the things I've learned over those years is how to price my services as a freelancer consultant, solopreneur, as well as mixing in content marketing, which I know your audience is big on, you know, using podcasting, digital marketing.
And things like that over the years has really helped me just kind of build that freedom based business that we all are after. Love it. That's awesome.
Josiah Goff: [00:05:28] I love that. Before we get into the pricing conversation, I'm really curious, you know, cause you alluded to, you said earlier that there is no overnight success, right?
Like it's a long journey and we hit the highlights there. I'm curious if there. What comes to mind if there were any points where you were just like, did I make a huge mistake making this transition?
Paul Klein: [00:05:50] Oh yeah. Early on. I was like, man, who are you? Who are you to think you're a consultant can have your own business.
What are you talking about? You can't have an incorporated business. You're just a moron, you know? And, and, you know, I had all those thoughts early on and everything, but. I man, I just stayed focused on what I wanted to achieve and didn't listen to the naysayers and just believed in what I was doing. And, and I had three kids and a mortgage at that point.
So I mean on the card table, in the living room, man, I'm working till two in the morning. I'm busting, you know, what to get after it. So if you expect to have results based on. Knocking all these books or these gurus that say, you know, here, you just buy my program for $1,200 and you're going to be flying 10 X, jacks, and every, all that kind of stuff in 90 days, that's just not going to happen in business.
And maybe it does, I'm not knocking anybody, but, uh, but for me, it was getting after it every day, showing up. Working with clients driving hours to meet with clients and just getting after it, man, there were times when I'm like, man, what am I doing? I could just have that secure day job, but I knew the freedom was so, so great.
And once you turn that corner and you start getting a good funnel coming in, and I talk about what I call the three pillars of revenue, every freelance or consultant, coach solo preneur needs to be able to ride out those highs and lows. And once you have those three pillars in place, man, now you can just take off.
My wife comes in. Hey, you want to go to lunch? Yeah, let's go to lunch. Okay. Well, I'm not going to watch who got kicked off the Island tonight. I'm going to work a couple extra hours in the evening. Cause I took off earlier in the day to have spend time with my family or catch my daughter's play at school.
So that's what it was really about. Not just the money.
Josiah Goff: [00:07:23] Fantastic. I love it. So yeah, let's talk about what are these three pillars of revenue that you mentioned?
Paul Klein: [00:07:28] Yeah. Yeah. I work with a lot of people and one of the things I've learned, I kind of just stumbled across this. Again. Everybody says, Oh, you just automatically are successful.
And what happened early on, first off, when I left my organization and started my own business in Oh nine, I was scrambled. Like we all do. And I was trying to figure out how to make different revenue, but. One of the things I knew there was this new thing called the internet. And so I was like, okay, I got to lean into this.
I, I, I started dabbling in email marketing early on, like with con, Oh, what is it? Constant contact. That was my first email program. All corporate lame, no personality trying to be the corporate speak, but I developed just kind of. Over the first couple of years, those three pillars. And the first pillar is your just based consulting.
That's your high end. One-on-one a lot. It takes a lot of your personal time. It's a, again, high level consulting. You should be compensated such for that because it involves a lot of your time because true wealth is discretionary time. And if you're not charging a premium for your time, then you're not going to have that time with your family and so forth.
So that's just your base consulting is pillar one. Pillar two is having an online resources and guides or an online website presence, lead magnets, a place where people can go on your niche. So if you are a content marketer or you teach content marketing, then your webpage should have resources, guides funnels.
One of our friends, I know we both know Josiah is Shannon matter. She has a great online presence with her. She's got lead magnet. So that's her pillar. She has one on one consulting and coaching that she does, which is the other pillar. So she has two of the pillars. And I don't know if she does the third one.
And the third one is what I call training and education. This is a little hard to do right now in the current environment with COVID, but it's having a live in person workshops going to. Business events, annual business meetings and doing, speaking and training around your niche or your expertise. That's how I got my first fortune 500 company.
I was speaking and doing some training in my niche and my craft and all of a sudden, lo and behold target shows up, Hey, we want to work with you now. Oh, okay. Yeah. So anyway, that's the three pillars, your consulting, online resources and guides and your niche, and then go out and do. I call it training and education.
Cause some people don't like to speak. They don't want to think of those cells as speakers. So just go out and train people on what it is that you do and teach people about your craft and that will we all work together and create a great revenue source for you in developing, um, The three pillars of revenue, because if you rely just on your one on your high level consulting or your, and for you stuff is, you know, you're just feast or famine, you get super busy and then it's dead for six.
We'll have the online courses, online products, knowledge products to balance that out, along with training and education in person, that's the magic that works all together to write out those highs and lows. Yeah,
Josiah Goff: [00:10:18] absolutely. I think that's such timely advice with everything going on in the world right now.
So many businesses and especially in the agency world where I'm at, I've seen several agencies shut down because they only had that one revenue stream. And like on the consulting side or the direct one-to-one time for money. And if their target customer was part of the non-essential group of businesses that had to shut down, like.
No one's spending any money and therefore they're not making, and they I've seen entire agency shutdown.
Paul Klein: [00:10:50] So
Josiah Goff: [00:10:51] 1000% agree with you there. That's so important to get those pillars in place so that you're not just propped up on one, but you've got a firm foundation for when things start to get a little wobbly.
I'd love to hear your thoughts as a pricing expert. What do you feel like are some of the biggest mistakes that people make, who are new to pricing their goods or services?
Paul Klein: [00:11:13] Yeah, the first thing is, I mean, the number one thing that I see is that they all undervalue their pricing and their services. They pretty much think, okay.
Well, it comes easy to me. Must not be valuable. Assume that that's one of the truths that I speak about, and I'm just bringing up my notes right here. And that is, is that you don't charge enough. You don't value your expertise, especially when first starting out. And I get it. When you're first starting out, you, you are an imposter because you haven't done it yet.
But that's okay. You lean into it as you embrace the, the direction that you're going, but also realize that you do have some expertise, some knowledge and so forth. And in this day and age, you can become an expert in just about anything very quickly. You can go learn Facebook ads. You can go learn content marketing, StoryBrand marketing.
I mean, there's just so many things that you can just niche down on. So someone like me, who's looking for a copywriter. Yeah, I know about StoryBrand. I know Ray Edwards. I know Mike Kim. He's a friend of mine. I know. Alternative copy. Writers, but when it comes to copywriting, the average person could know more about copywriting.
Then I do it just by studying it. So once you become very knowledgeable in that craft, or if you have some experience in that background, you got to lean into that and realize it is valuable and it's valuable the right people that don't know anything about that particular niche. So don't undervalue your services is a big thing.
And typically you're just undercharging for your services and that, and that puts you in that commoditized service based business. And next thing you know, you're competing against Fiverr and Upwork and people in the Philippines that $5 is a month salary to them. And so you just can't compete that way because we are in that global market.
So you've got to separate yourself in other ways.
Josiah Goff: [00:12:49] Yeah, that's great advice. So for people who are in that process of figuring out like what their, what their true value is, how do you, because it's very relative, it's there. It feels very relative and it feels hard to quantify what are the steps that you can take to really start to.
Put together a pricing, packaging, whatever that truly reflects the value that you bring to your customer or client.
Paul Klein: [00:13:19] Yeah. There's a couple things I can share specific strategies, but there's a couple of foundational things that you've got to get first. And the first thing is when you're first starting out, or even if you've been doing it for a while is realize people don't buy time.
They buy outcomes, transformation, and results. So if you're charging for time, if you're billing by the hour, Then you are commoditizing yourself. You're limiting the amount of income. Even if you charge a thousand dollars an hour, that's still only $8,000 for a days work. Well, I've had contracts for $45,000 for a day's work.
And it's because I've positioned myself for value to the client. They're not concerned with how much time they want that expertise. They want that problem solved so they can get to the result that they want. So it's all about that transformation. And so if you ask me for any of my clients asked me how much do I charge by hour?
They all know better now, but the first thing. I say, I don't have an hourly rate. So let's talk about what you're trying to achieve. What are the results. And then that becomes what we call the value conversation. And this is all based in a great works by Alan Weiss million dollar consulting. Ron Baker, who's been on my podcast of implementing value based pricing.
Blair ends, who is a great pricing, creativity book for agencies and so forth. All of them talk about. The value conversation. And it's truly that it's it's what is the value to the client? Because value is so subjective. If you look at, uh, a flight from New York to LA, if you buy your tickets six months in advance, you're going to pay a different price than if you do it the day before.
Well, if you have a funeral to get to in LA and you gotta get out there today, you don't care. You're going to pay a premium price. Cause you've got to get out there. And then if you take it down even further, Do you want to sit in first class? Do you want to sit in the extra leg room, whatever they call it, or do you just want to get there?
So you're willing to sit in row 32 and in the middle row, just because I want to pay a lower price. So we all value things differently. And the problem with solopreneurs consultants, coaches and so forth is we don't look at the value to our clients. And we just, we say, okay, I have a service. It's just gonna cost $1,500.
Well, $1,500 to a mom and pop is totally different than to Nike or to a mid tier company with 500 employees versus 10 employees. So you've really got to look at the client and I love what blur in says, and that is price the client, not your service, and really look at the value that you're bringing to them.
Not how much time it takes you.
Josiah Goff: [00:15:36] Oh, that's such great advice. I love that we're having this conversation. Cause I fortunately experienced this early on in my business where a lot of people, you touched on this earlier, there's this sort of devaluing of their own skills and their own value that they bring to the client.
And so they underpriced themselves. And I noticed that when I made that transition out of my corporate job into, I started with consulting and then started the agency. I was coming out of a six figure job. And so in my head it was. If this company is willing to pay me six figures, then I can at least deliver that much value you.
And so I out of the gate, but like without even really like looking at the market much, I price myself towards the top end. And actually one of the things that I did when I got started was I actually started on Upwork, which is notorious for all these low price freelancers and really commoditized services.
And I put myself like, well above the, the other people doing what I did for web development. And I got high paying clients who hired me specifically because my, my hourly rate was higher than the next person. And it all came down to the mental outlook that I had on it was I valued myself. And I got to that conclusion because of my past employment, but none of that matters.
It's all a mental game, right? It's all like, it's all in your mindset,
Paul Klein: [00:17:04] mindset and positioning, you know, you position yourself cause you had that experience and yeah. If your company is paying you a hundred thousand dollars, then you gotta be making them at least 300. In revenue, it's usually three times of what you're paid is what they, you know, just for them to break even.
Yeah. I mean more than that. Yeah. But when you put it in that context, when you go out on your own or you start looking at your services again, think about what you're doing for the client. Connie pack is somebody I worked with. She's a Facebook ads down in Southern California. She's a great gal. Love her family and everything got to hang out with her at social media marketing world.
This last February. I've been working with her on her pricing. Cause she's been so busy, just consulting and everything in our pricing is way too low. And I, so I started talking to her about this one client. She was talking about wanting to raise her prices. And I said, well, let's talk about this. I said, well, how much do you charge?
She's well, I'm charging them $1,500 a month, but I'm just so busy. I can't keep up. And I said, okay, well, let's talk about what you're doing for the client. I said, what are you doing? What are your Facebook ads generating for your client per year in Facebook ads? And she said about $500,000 in revenue. I go that's, that's awesome.
That's good. And I said, what were they generating in revenue before your Facebook ads? And she said about $50,000. So I said, okay, well, your value to that client is $450,000. So we reverse engineer that. I mean, good money on the stock. Market's 10% on your money. If I can get 10%, I'll invest in that all day.
Well, we positioned her at $45,000, which is about $3,500 a month. It was a little under 45,000. And so, but she went in and positioned, Hey, we want to go to 45,000, which is $3,500 a month guy. He's like. Yeah, no brainer. It's easy. You're making me 450 grand a year. And so she was just itching to go from 5,000, to like 2000.
She would have been happy. I'm like, no, you got to get closer to the value. Bring yourself up. Don't sell to your own wallet. Don't undervalue yourself. And once she positioned herself and talked to her clients that way and explain the value that she's actually bringing, he quickly realized that, yeah, I need her more than she needs me.
And this is a yeah, the drop in the bucket for the rate.
Josiah Goff: [00:19:10] Oh, that's so good. So you had mentioned that there are some specific strategies that you deploy. You kind of touched on one there. Can we talk through your strategy when it comes to pricing?
Paul Klein: [00:19:20] Yeah. Yeah. One of the things you can do is no matter what, you know, I covered a couple of the truths and so forth about the first sales yourself, getting over the mindset.
But once you get into pricing your services, whether it's a high end consulting gig or an online course or whatever it is, use these three strategies. For all of them. Number one is always use pricing options. If you notice, when you go to the carwash Starbucks or buy a SAS product, there's always at least three options.
It's called good, better, best pricing. Goldilocks pricing is what it's called sometimes. And we as solopreneurs freelancers consultants, typically we'll just provide one price. And what that's doing is that's giving your clients and ultimatum. Let's take it or leave it proposition. And so what they end up having to do to make a value decision for them, they have to compare it to something else.
So what do they do? They compare it to your competitor or they go to Upwork and compare it there. So by providing the pricing options, you're giving your clients the context that they need to make a value decision for them. Plus you're empowering them to make the best decision for them, what you want to do.
You don't want to just use some kind of Jedi mind trick to get over on people. You truly want to demonstrate your value and by giving them those pricing options, it does that. And the other thing it does, Ron Baker says this, when you do provide pricing options, it becomes a question in your client's mind.
I'm not, should we work with just IO, but how are we going to work with Josiah? So it really brings the focus back on you and not on other things to make that value determination. So pricing options, three options. All the time, the standard carwash, the deluxe and so forth. So just simple pricing options.
And then what you want to do is deploy the second strategy here, which is always anchor high. You've probably heard of anchoring before and anytime you're in a negotiation or your doing any kind of a client onboarding process or a pricing for your course or anything, always start out with your high anchor offer your Bentley service.
Don't offer the Bentley. No one's ever going to buy it. And we always have a tendency to start out. We assume we project our own devalue on our prospects and we put out the, well here here's the Corolla? Well, no, they wanted, they wanted the Lexus or the Bentley, but you never offered it. And then you put your Corolla out there and they were thinking really much higher.
And now all of a sudden you come in low and it's kind of like what you did on Upwork. Or a, whatever it was, where you put that higher rate on, are you okay? Anchored yourself? And so that got the respect to the certain types of clients you wanted to attract. So you weren't playing the commodity game. So always anchor high.
So if you're, if you're in a negotiation, make it the first time you say, see or hear is your high anchor. And so if you're you and I are talking just, I about doing some coaching with myself and we talked for a while. Yeah, it sounds good. Just, I think my coaching package is somewhere around $45,000. And then you just go silent and let that awkward silence kind of set in, see how they react before you get off the phone.
If Josiah says, Oh man, that's crazy. I can't, if they start foaming at the mouth flopping on the floor, then you know, you're way out of the ballpark. But if just, I says, yeah, send me over a proposal. And they say, I'll come up with some options for you. And now I know, okay, I'm in the ballpark right here in, and you've anchored your value for what you think you can provide to that client.
And now you just kind of ease into it and then you structure your three pricing options once you've anchored around that. And so you can kind of play with that. I do it in an email too. I get an email from a club, I'll say, yeah, this sounds great. I'll work up some pricing options for you. This is going to be somewhere in the $15,000 range and then they'll come back.
I'll be like, That sounds great. Looking forward to it. Okay. Boom. I know I'm I'm in the realm. Sometimes they'll come back and say, Oh, that's way over budget. We can't afford that. Then what I'll do is I'll I'll structure my options accordingly based on that. So anchoring is a very powerful strategy when used with options.
And then the third and final strategy for you today is using a one page proposal or a single page proposal. I I've found this to be true. All these things were things I was doing regularly for the last 10 years. And then when I read Blair N's book pricing, creativity, it all came together. So these are all based in behavioral economics.
That Blair talks about a Ron Baker talks about in behavioral economics. There's tons of books out there that are just all based in this. It's just all. Proven stuff. And so I just learned this over time and things I learned, like I got tired of putting together five page proposal with, you know, my grandpa started the company and all these great projects I did.
And I've been on the other end. And what do we do with the 30 page proposal? We flipped to the end and looked at the back sheet to see what the pricing is. So just use a single page proposal. Put in your bullet points, put your high anchor on the left because we were where we read left to right. Put all the value benefits in option one, which is your high anchor, your mid tier option, and then your low tier option and with all the benefits to your client and make it super easy for them to engage with you.
Once you have a hook, once they commit. Yeah. We'd like to go with option B the middle option. Send us over a contract. Boom. Now in your contract, you can put all your qualifiers, all your disclaimers and all that stuff. But what happens when you start doing that on the front end, before you get the client to commit, you're just overloading them into what's called choice overload, and they're likely to shut down and go somewhere else.
So those are the three, three pricing strategies for you today. Number one is always using pricing options. Number two, always anchor high, say show and provide an anchor before moving on. And then strategy number three is using a single page proposal for your clients. Oh man.
Josiah Goff: [00:24:39] That's so good. You know, I definitely had, I heard the first strategy and have used that for pretty much everything that I do, but the other two are really interesting that what you talked about, that they're different than some of the advice that I'd been given, but it makes so much sense.
So like you said, anchor high and the kind of conventional wisdom or common advice out there is that you, you want to aim at the middle. Right. You have this middle sweet spot and then you, you got a high anchor and a low anchor just to make that middle sweet spot seem more appealing, but it makes so much sense what you're saying.
You could be leaving so much money on the table by doing that.
Paul Klein: [00:25:19] Yeah. And it's very similar to the same. I mean, what all happen is when you start doing this, you'll find that 80% of the time they'll land in the middle. But what I coach you to do and help people with is because we all want to raise our prices.
Right. But we're scared to. So by using the pricing options, you can provide that high option, that high Bentley product, it kind of stretches you. So each time you do one of these. Incrementally over time, your value starts to go up because you learn, Oh, wow. I option this time. I had 25 and I never charged more than 15 before.
Okay. Well now I'm going to make my high option 35, my middle option, 25 and my low option 15 where I used to be in bam. All of a sudden you've made that job. And so it just kind of happens over time, but yeah, well, they can always talks about that when you provide them. Typically you do land in the middle, but you always want to put the foundation of the conversation with that high anchor against saying the high anchor in a discovery call, showing it in an email or making it the first price they see or hear in a discovery.
And I do workshops with 12 people decide they'll love this story real quick on anchoring. And I tell them, Hey, we're having this conversation just like we are here. And I explain anchoring works, you know, it's being done to you. So let's do an exercise. So I divide the groups, six people in group, a six people in group B, the six people in groups.
Hey, I give them a questionnaire, handwritten paper, and it says, what do you think the average. Hourly rate is for all consultants in this room and then a blank with a dollar sign. And they'll fill that in. Then the group B is my anchor group. And what I'll do is I'll say I'll seed that question with, do you think the average hourly rate of all consultants in this room will be higher than $500 per hour or less than $500 per hour?
Then I'll ask them the same question. So I anchor the, I use the same exact questions for two groups. I just put that anchor question in there with the $500 value. And inevitably it averages about $1,850 per hour for the group that I anchored with the $500 anchor in the group that I don't anchor. I were just somewhere about 150 to $200 an hour.
And I tell them that I'm going to anchor you right, right now. And I've done this numerous times. And every time it works, it just amazes me how, um, it always just works out that way. So anchoring absolutely works.
Josiah Goff: [00:27:32] So Paul, I'd like to shift gears a little bit. And earlier you mentioned that the three pillars of revenue were straight consulting and then having an online presence with content and that sort of thing.
And then training and education. I'd love to dig into the content side and get you to kind of peel back the curtain a bit to your own content strategy for your business, specifically around your podcast. I'd love to hear why you started the podcast, how you went about it and how that's impacted your business.
Paul Klein: [00:28:01] Yeah, absolutely. A podcasting is so, so good. I can't recommend it more before I created my pricing is positioning podcasts. So let me back up a little bit. In 2009, I went out on my own hid behind the corporate veil, created a company name and all that, and didn't even do Facebook or any content, just, it was all behind the corporate veil.
Well, I heard about podcasting and so I actually started a podcast and did about 50 episodes in that vertical. It was a very hyper niche, vertical. But it was amazing how much credibility that gave me. And the more niche you are the better, I mean, this was such a hyper niche that it's a niche of a niche of a niche for architects, engineers.
Very, very small. Everybody tuned in every week. They looked forward to it. They sent questions. I think we did it in a, what was it? It was like 2015 to 2016, but I realized the power of podcasting. And so I took a cliff Ravenscraft podcasting a to Z back in the day who he trained John Lee Dumas. And, uh, Pat Flynn, pretty much every podcast or out there, he's not doing podcast training anymore, but that's why I have this giant microphone here.
It's a cliff Ravenscraft microphone. But anyway, once you, that, that was a great experience. And the, one of the really things that struck me is when I would meet people that I didn't even know, they felt like they knew me. I mean, they had caught me off guard initially, but then as it happened more, I realized they really feel like they know me because my voice has been in their earbuds as their.
Mowing the lawn taking a shower, you know, other places we don't even want to think about. So, you know, it's just a very intimate platform that really provides that trust and so forth. So in 2018, I pivoted from my corporate, I still have my two corporate companies, a SAS company and consulting company into what you know, me for Josiah, which is pricing is positioning and my personal brand.
So I launched my personal brand in 2018 in may of 2018. Well, by. January, 2019 is when I launched my podcast. And again, I've had Chris DOE on my podcast. I've had Ron Baker, Blair ends, Jonathan Stark, Mike Kim, Shannon matter. And I mean, just all these people that are just, I would never have gotten a phone call with.
David C. Baker, you know, just a Michael Bursky from consulting success and I've been on his show. So none of that would have been possible without the podcast. So, and for me, I'm not a blogger. I'm not a very good writer, as I mentioned to you before, I don't have a degree. So I guess I have some flaws in that area.
My English isn't as good, but my voice and being able to explain and talk to people on a podcast is just, is a great forum for me. So it really works as opposed to being a writer or a. Bloggers social media, just pick one and go in and podcasting it. And you've got, what is it? You might know the number just there's like, I don't know, 2.5 million websites, but there's only what 700,000 podcasts or something like that.
I mean, it's, it's a really low number for a member
Josiah Goff: [00:30:49] cross. The 1 million Mark, like a few months ago. Then that's just because I think the over the last year, it's just really exponentially grown, but yeah, the comparison between like podcasts and even like YouTube channels too, there aren't nearly as many podcasts and the podcasts.
75% of them end up being pod faded, which is where people just sort of slowly give up on them and then they, they go away. So it's really easy to, well, I won't say easy, but it's a, cause there's a lot to podcasting. Right. But it struck me in the same way. Like I started this podcast in October of last year and it blew me away how quickly I was able to build relationships with people that I never.
Thought we would ever sit down with me, but because you have, you have this platform, even if you're just starting out and you're small, like you still have a platform, so you have something you're bringing to the conversation. So you can serve first and go into those conversations saying, Hey, I want to help spread your message, help people get to know you.
And then you're also serving an audience, but you also get to sit down with amazing people and have awesome conversations and get a lot of free coaching and consulting, which is what I've done here.
Paul Klein: [00:32:01] Yeah, the great thing about it. Is it doesn't or a screen or screen time, all the other forums, Facebook ads, LinkedIn, all that video all require a screen or screen time.
So you can pop in a podcast, go on a run, mow the lawn wash dishes, multitask. You can be working as a security guide and you're still listening to podcasts and continuing to learn. So it's my favorite by far. And like you said, to your point, it is really opens up the doors. And it's really telling to me is when I meet people in person.
Yeah. They have such a comfort level with me that I'm like, wait a minute. I mean, but I've already talked about my mom or my kids and they already know all those stories and it's like, we've already had a conversation, even though we haven't. So it takes me a minute to warm up to them. And then I realized that they're harmless and they're just, they've just been listening to my podcast for two years.
Josiah Goff: [00:32:49] I'm curious what your strategy was for starting the podcast and how you've grown it over the last year and a half.
Paul Klein: [00:32:56] Yeah, it's been growing great. You know, I had a couple different strategies. One is I just wanted to launch it to talk about my favorite subject, which was pricing, which my real goal was to be a business coach and be hired to help people become a consultant, solopreneur, make pivots and so forth.
And I do masterminds and I have a horse community called a rock, your pricing. It's all kind of wrapped around pricing. So I'm kind of niching down in the pricing. But my ultimate goal is to, is to be a business coach, teaching people how to start and run them. And I'm doing one on one and so forth. So the podcast is just that platform and, and I niched down cause I knew pricing was a very tough thing for a lot of people.
And as more and more, you know, I think Forbes magazine predicted there's a 54 million people that are freelancing. And now with COVID, I mean, it's going to probably double in the next five years. So. We are in a monumental shift from the way we used to be. It used to be institutions, large organizations, company go to work with a hundred people at a company and then retire.
It's going back to the buggy whip days and the blacksmith days of the wild West, where everybody is an independent basically. So my theory is longterm, and I'm thinking a decade, you know, I'm not thinking in the next six months, I'm thinking as I approach my fifties, that I can help people with my background and doing that and pricing was where it's at.
So I went to Blair end's workshop. I learned a ton from Blair and I didn't have any credibility. I didn't have any, I think I had two episodes and, uh, because I had invested in his workshop, it had a relationship. I said, Hey, Blair would be honored if you'd be my first, first guest. And if you go back and listen to episode three or four, I'm so nervous.
I'm not like I'm fumbling. I mean, I'm just, I sound like a moron, you know, but I've grown from that. And now last week I had Chris DOE on here. I've had Ron Baker and just, you know, some big names and just jump in and do it, man. And just, don't be afraid to make mistakes and so forth and just go for it. So.
It's a great, great thing to do. If you can wrap it into your business plan overall, that's kind of how I did it or I'm doing it.
Josiah Goff: [00:34:57] Yes, that's
Paul Klein: [00:34:58] great.
Josiah Goff: [00:34:59] Absolutely. Don't be afraid to do it because the great thing is you can always edit it.
Paul Klein: [00:35:08] That's the thing that I have a,
Josiah Goff: [00:35:09] I have a fantastic editor and he makes me sound way smarter than I actually am because there's so much of the stammering and the
Paul Klein: [00:35:17] unintelligible.
Yeah. I bet it's out. Yeah. I have a, I hired a producer, Danny Osman with Emerald city studios. Awesome producer. He produces Mike Kim's show a couple other big names. And, um, I can't say enough what that allows you to do, if you can afford it. Not everybody can afford it, but if you can afford a good producer, cause then all you gotta do is concentrate on your content.
So I'll, and here's another little tip that I've learned that I do just as is I do. If you look, go back and look at all my episodes, I do two solos, one interview, two solos, one interview. So what that allows me to do is all I gotta do is put out two interviews and two solo and I'm a month out ahead. So I can batch two interviews, come up two solo episodes, and I'm a month ahead.
So I'm always ahead of the curve now, right now we're recording this in May, 2020, and I'm in the process of moving, but I have about 10 episodes batch for interviews because I'm moving. It's going to be interview shows from may 20, 20, June, 2020. Cause I'm in the process of moving to Nashville, but.
Before that you'll see. My pattern has always been two solos, one. I mean, that was a good rhythm for me. I tried three and one, four, and one, but two episodes. And then an interview is really a good rhythm for me and worked really well. Staying ahead. That's a great
Josiah Goff: [00:36:32] idea. I'm curious on those solo shows, do you try to make them longer like the interviews or do you try to keep them shorter?
What's your strategy for those solo shows?
Paul Klein: [00:36:42] I used to get caught up on that early on, and I finally just said, you know what? The content needs to be good. If it takes me 10 minutes to put up. Rock solid content, then it's kind of like a song. Part of my story is that he's playing a hairband. So I used to run around with guns and roses and Motley crew out here in California.
I got the pictures to prove it. Got the guitar back there. You can see the Les Paul. So anyway, and so it's like a song, you know, uh, tell Ted Nugent that he can't do. Was it stranglehold or whatever it was, you know, it's like a 10 minutes long or something like that. You know that you gotta make it five minutes.
Cause that's what radio wants now. Make the content good and valuable. And if that takes you 15 minutes or 45 minutes, that's what it does. So I just dive into a topic. I try to do all my topics around pricing and strategies, and I just make notes, you know, on Evernote. I have Evernote on my phone. So as things come to I'll wake up in the middle of the night with an idea and I'll just blast it into Evernote real quick.
And then when I'm ready to. Focused on that episode, I'll just, I'll make some notes, just kind of as a, some guardrails of where I want to go. And then I just kind of riff on that and if it takes me 10 minutes or 45 minutes, as long as the content is good, I don't try to fill time that doesn't serve anybody.
Josiah Goff: [00:37:47] Yeah. Great advice. When you were starting out doing the solo shows, did you, did you find it difficult to talk through that content or is that always come naturally or did you, has it taken a lot of practice to get to the point where you can just sit down with an outline and talk through everything?
Paul Klein: [00:38:03] Yeah, it took a little practice. I think, early on, I was so concerned with what people were going to think and everything. And I finally realized, you know, nobody cares about you. You know, nobody cares about us. The ones that do care will tune in and they'll get value from it. And so you don't have to be too worried that if I put something out there, the whole world's gonna know about it from the president to.
Gary V to whoever they're all going to. I know about it. And if it's not good, no chances are no one's going to see it or care. So the ones that do care are going to tune in and like it. So just get over that fear. And I just started focusing again, just to provide value, provide tons of value, continue to establish a relationship, go in it for the long game, commit to it.
I committed to do it the first year, no matter what come or high water, I was going to put an episode out, but I, I just. I love my content. I think that's the other thing is you want to have something that you love. So I have 10 years of consulting stories I sit around and think about, Oh yeah, I remember, you know, I did on Apple when Apple was building their new building.
So I have a story about how I went in with a team to get the Apple job. And I eel you'll notice I don't have the Apple logo on my webpage because we didn't get the job. So I have a whole story and business lesson around that. And I think those stories combined with a business lesson, at least in the business space is where people find value because they can resonate with the real life story and learn from it and maybe either avoid it or, or learn from it and be better for them when they get in something similar.
Josiah Goff: [00:39:30] awesome. Well, Paul, this has been fantastic. I've loved our conversation before we hop off here. Can you share with everyone where they can connect with you online?
Paul Klein: [00:39:41] Yeah. The best ways as you're listening to this podcast right now, whatever player you're on. Just go down to the search bar and search for the pricing is positioning podcasts and hit subscribe.
That way I'll come up in your player right now. Okay. And if you want to get a copy of my one page proposal, it is a word document that you can just slap your logo on and see how I lay those out. Go to episode three, episode zero, zero three. It's one of the first podcasts I did. And in that episode, it tells you how you can get a copy of that.
So subscribe to the pricing is positioning podcast, episode three, we'll get you a copy of the one page proposal that I'll email you personally. And then if that is not of interest to you and you're listening online or something, and then you'd just rather check me out or go East dock me, you're more than welcome to Paul klein.net.
And on there I have a pricing quiz and I have a webinar. She can go in and see pictures from my hairband days and bombs going off when I was jumping off the stage like van Halen. So all kinds of good [email protected] as well. Oh, I love it. Cool. Well,
Josiah Goff: [00:40:42] and we'll make sure that all that's linked up in the show notes, Paul, once again, thanks so much for being on the show and to everybody listening, go be a hero.
Thank you so much for listening to this content heroes episode. As a reminder, we've put together a special worksheet just for this episode, that will help you make sure the content you're creating is
Paul Klein: [00:41:00] fueling each pillar of your business.
Josiah Goff: [00:41:02] So go to
Paul Klein: [00:41:03] content
Josiah Goff: [00:41:03] heroes.com/worksheet 51 that's worksheet five one to download your pillars worksheet.
Right away. And if you have any questions or if you want to share what you're learning, be sure to head over to the content heroes, Facebook [email protected] slash feed.
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