How much is PR worth???



After spending several days going over my pricing I decided to lower them to the lowest possible. It was a painful ordeal.
Later that week I had a customer come in and after a bit decided upon the mat and style she wanted for her already framed piece of art. Her soon to be husband made the frame from scratch and I must admit it looked pretty good. I had to cut UV glass. Double mat it with a "V" grove. cut the acid free foam board and fit it..All said and done she agreed to the final price. Several weeks went by and I had to finaly call her. ( first time ever this has happened)I called her to remind her that the piece of art she had framed for her soon to be husband was waiting. I had called her before when it was done. Well she finaly came in to pick it up but complained about the pricing. It was a shock to me cuz she had agreed to it and I went ahead and did the job. She loves the job and workmanship, just that she thought it was a bit spendy and said she could get it done elsewhere for cheaper. Who knows!
She paid for it cuz she felt obligated and because I had already done the job before she could cancel it..according to her.
My question is this...I now have an unhappy customer. This bothers me a lot and I am wondering just what it is I should do for her. I would almost rather give it to her for free than to have her walk out mad. I have thought of giving her a discount, taking it all apart and giving it back to her and have her take it elsewhere. I don't feel like it was overcharged, but who knows what the other guy will do for a sale?
I know that you can't please every one all the don't even try!
Is this a PR problem now??? What should I do? What would you do??? I am thinking about calling her this morning and asking her what would it take from us to make her happy again. What does she want? Of course I am expecting a lower price even still from her. Might as well give it to her.
I hate to totally disregard the question so I won't. But I just have to ask what reasoning did you used to find your rock bottom price. This is now a new pricing strategy you intend to lead with? What result are you looking for? These aren't sarcastic questions (shocking yes I know) they are legit.

Now to the original question - forget about it. You stand to gain nothing by "fixing" this. If she became a "regular" are you sure you want her?
Sometimes the complaints have nothing to do with you, your prices, or your product.

It can be a lifestyle habit that people fall into.

I would send her a thank you note for her business, compliment her soon-to-be husband on the nice job that he did in making the frame, and let her know that you look forward to doing business with her and her husband again in the future.

Then let it go.
Do as Terry suggested and send a thank you note. Did you ever think that maybe she's pissed off a t her fiancee and regrets spending the money on him. It can be as fickle as that. I wouldn't open a can o' worms. Never give your work away!
I'm more concerned about your new rock bottom pricing, I hope it is something you and your business can survive on.

Remember too...50% deposit, price agreed upon before work. If she has issues with that after the fact that is her issue.
I agree with Jay, why in the world would you lower your prices?

And yes, do what Terry suggested and learn the lesson, it will happen again unless you do something different. What could you do to change that?
How about;
1) Use a pos program and always give the customer a printout of the transaction, they don't have anything to argue about.
2) Always get a 50% deposit or full payment upfront, again nothing to argue about and it helps with cash flow.
Steph we posted at the same time with the same ideas
...I now have an unhappy customer
I don't think so Trapper. Maybe a cheap chiseling house weasel that came up a little short at the end of the month. . . .

Maybe that catch did fetch what they were expecting, maybe she got her period an hour before while she was in a restraunt and now her thigh-high muk-lucks are tainted....... who knows what its all about.

Or maybe it;s the husband who was talking trash about going out and chewing bark and pounding it into matboard and melting down some of that nice iron rich sand on you Bering beaches to make the glass......

Get over her. Either she comes back or not. Focus on the good customers and new customers.

As you wend your way though life
my friend,
whether quietly or bold,
Keep your eye upon the bagel,
and NOT upon the hole.

Odd that this comes up today. I had a customer who 'chisels' constantly, wants framing done in ways it never should be; and sends her husband in to pick things up and he complains about everything, like crazy. This week a friend of hers came in and asked "How do you put up with Mary, and her husband?" So today I said "Mary, I think we both would be happier if you had your framing done elsewhere." Wow, do I feel better!

However, I do have customers that help me alot with their friends. All my advertising is strictly word of mouth. One of my favorites is Rocky, a lady with a large educational facility. She brings her friends in herself, to make sure they get here, and she does a wonderful job up 'upselling" the customer for me. "well, Sweety, that's a good price! You won't get better work done cheaper any place." is her standard comment. Someday I'm going to figure out how much she's actually worth to me.
Originally posted by Baer Charlton:
Maybe that catch did fetch what they were expecting, maybe she got her period an hour before while she was in a restraunt and now her thigh-high muk-lucks are tainted....... who knows what its all about.

I am awlays in the habit of getting 50% down. But for some dumb reason she managed to get out the door with nothing down. I did not write the order up.
I lowered the prices Jay because I felt that I needed to be more in line with our competition.
( Pricing at best has always been a confusing issue for me. I don't want to take anyone for a ride, and by the same token I don't want them to take me for a ride. To small of a community to try and work volume. I have always said I don't mind you making a killing, but do you have to do it all off of me??? lets share it..spread it around a bit.).
I looked at their prices. Only a few. took a look at what an item cost me to get to my door and then took my competitors price subtracted the dif from door to door cost and adjusted accordingly piece by piece..!
Do I reccomend it to another..not really!
I feel you charge what you charge and not really worry to much about the other guy. unless your constantly getting turned down. I had a very unpleaseant experience once ( once was all it took for me ). I had vistied another shop ( courtesy call ) and I saw on his wall two jobs that had been in my place the day before for pricing. I figured that I had lost because of that..but it could have been at or around the same price as I quoted, they just did not feel like making the drive all the way back to my place. Whatever the reason I had lost out and it hurt to see that. I won't say I do a better job than him, I will just say aethetically ( SP ? ) I have a much better looking place. I think he does a great job but has made his share of enemies as well. Don't we all.
I consider him to be a competitor, but really wish him well cuz I feel he is servicing the community and does a good job. I don't want to take a nickel from him. Rather I make my own niche. So my trying to match or beat his prices was not an act of takiing work away from him but rather an act of trying to be fair.

I really felt the lady was mad because she was embarrassed that I had to call and remind her of the job..especially after having meade such a to-do about it all and then she forgot..ha! Whatever the reasons she had, right or wrong..I felt bad!
I like you guys idea about the thank-you card.
We do that anyhow with our customers, but never thought about extending it to a disgrunlted one.
Reminds me of a proverb that says " a soft answer turneth away much wrath" Good wisdom showing here.
I think it might take a special card though for the grumps and not just the generic thank-you card
So, Trapper...

Have you checked to see if they need any help on the crab trawlers? Put your name on the list so thatway when your framing business tanks for lack of money, you will have something to fall back on.

We all have those type of customers come in and I just ingore their comments and take their money. If they can get it cheaper as they say, then they won't be back. Usually tho, they seem to always come back in to get more stuff done. They will probably always complain about something. It makes them feel better. I have one older woman who complains everytime she comes in about how expensive framing is... she has been doing this for the last 8 years and was just in last week picking up her latest batch.

Unless ALL of your customers are doing this to you, just ignore her and keep your prices as you need them to be to survive.

On the other side of the coin... if you lower your prices enough, I will send all of my work to you to do for me!!
Don't let this get you down.

There will ALWAYS be a customer like that. No matter what kind of business one is in, there is always some PIA cheapskate weasel (as Baer aptly called her!).

You could have the lowest prices in the continent and guess what? You'd still get that person!

Move on. You don't need such a customer, and stop lowering your prices.

Otherwise, as Framah said, we'd outsource our work to you!
and Jay..NO I would not welcome her back into the shop as things stand..But I feel it only takes one and your bad mouthed and it wont be long before years of hard work can be undone.
Maybe I am wrong but I know that if a friend of mine says something bad about a certain restaurant, the seed has been planted and for some reason I wont go in. That is totally unfair so the restaurant. but the spoken word carries a lot of power. I go into a restaurant once and the food is bad..thats it for me. One time is all it takes for the reputation to be shot. So unfair to the restaurant. I want to avoid that like the plague. But you can't possibly be all things to all people all the time. Can't be perfect no matter how hard you try. All great philisophical speeches and they all sound right on, untill it happens to you..then what? Who was it that siad goodbye to a customer recently by telling them they might be happier elsewhere...What a liberation that must be..I would give anything to be able to do that. I am just not use to rejection I guess. Got to toughen up. Right now I don't even want to go near the shop...arrrgggghhh!

If everyone complains that your prices are too high, then they probably are.

If no one complains that your prices are too high, then they are definitely too low.

You cannot make everyone happy all of the time. Determine your pricing according to your needs and circumstances and stick by it. If your customers know you can be low balled once, they will try it again and, I’m guessing, that if your area has a relatively small population, word is gonna get out that you can be haggled, and then you are likely to have to do a lot of ‘splainin’ each time you make a sale.

BTW: when you say, Kenai, you mean the town near Soldotna or somewhere in the peninsula itself? Man, that is gorgeous country up there!
Ya know, it's the Same Old Story .... it's simply that people have no conception of what constitutes a "right price" for framing.... they all seem to think it should be a little more than a haircut (which can be pretty outrageous in itself).

I had a customer today who balked at a $105 price for a 36 x 15 dry-mount, spacer, UV glass and Roma frame... thought it should have been about $50.

I had to explain that the per foot frame charge includes the glue, the wire, the Lineco backing paper, the SuperSoft Strand, the nickel plated hangers, the v-nails, the rent, my salary, the lights, the wine that we serve (which she drank the p**s out of, I might add), the pens, the ink, the coroplast layer (we don't charge for one), and on and on and on...

Oh, and let's not forget the freight, the gas, and the national deficit that Bushie ( has suceeded in passing on to the next 8 generations.....

Ya sigh, smile, and have another glass of wine.

Will I drop my prices to impart unrealistic expectations? .... Not On Your Life.
I'm arriving late to the party. (Boy, you guys really jumped all over this one.) I hardly know which cliche' to lead with.

It's not possible to make your customers truly happy or unhappy with your prices. Framing is a luxury. Most people simply do without it and probably don't even care how naked their walls look.

Any attempts to make framing affordable to everyone will not make consumers happy and it will really annoy your suppliers, your landlord, the utility companies, the IRS . . .

I honestly don't know where PR ends and goodwill and word-of-mouth begin. I think there is some overlap. They are priceless, and they don't come from your prices.

At one time, people would come into my shop and say that so-and-so told them I was the cheapest* framer in town. (They said that like I should be pleased.) I didn't wanna be the cheapest framer in town, and I kept raising prices until they stopped saying those nasty things about me.

They started saying they heard I was knowledgeable, or honest or had a great selection or a really friendly dog.

And I was happy.

*What they usually said was I was the most "reasonable," which we all know means "cheapest."

Thanks for the JibJab link. Don't know whether to laugh or cry... ;) about that Genius!

But hey, it is only 9 Trillion $$$$, could have been worse, like 10 trillion, maybe soon.
You can't base your prices off your competitors. Your costs are different than theirs. If they have lower costs and you charge the same as them, you could wind up loosing money on each sale. You need to set your prices based on what you need to pay your expenses.

It sounds like you would really benefit from point of sale software. It's definitely worth the cost. I know mine has saved me alot of headaches and more than paid for itself in added revenues.

One other thing I don't understand is why you this need to not take a money or business away from your competitors. Is this an Alaska thing or a personal thing? Our competitors have no qualms about taking money and business from us, I'm going to try and get all I can myself.
Originally posted by trapper:
I am thinking about calling her this morning and asking her what would it take from us to make her happy again.
two things:(Sorry about the "out of context reference" but it's just too ripe).

1. You are working under the assumption that she was happy before...

2. That is, in fact, the question for the ages.

You've gotten some sage advise...even from some that might understand the dynamics of a small frontier community. You know the routine, just don't shoot yourself in the foot trying to be your competition.
I think everyone has beat the concept of "why the heck are you lowering your prices?" into you so I will touch on your issues with your client.

First of all she should be the apologetic one here. She agreed to do business with you. She came to you for your services. You didn't solicit her work. She agreed to your pricing. I don't understand why you feel bad about this. If anything you should be spreading the word around town about her(not realy). You provided her with what you though was a fair price and have personaly backed up that thought by checking your competitors pricing. There will always be someone out there willing to do it "cheaper". But you do it better (don't we all?).

I have quoted out framing jobs that I felt were a good value for the job and you think the client understands the value of what you are selling them and they say "Oh. Well I thought it would cost like 50 bucks or so." Peoples perception of value can vary widely. You can't please everyone(sorry for the Giclee oops I mean cliche) so don't try to. If you feel like you have done something wrong then by all means send a card. IMHO you should leave this alone. I bet she comes back regardles.
Originally posted by trapper:
But I feel it only takes one and your bad mouthed and it wont be long before years of hard work can be undone.
If a framer existed that was the cheapest on the planet whilst still providing the best quality work possible while you waited and was the most loveable person on the planet too. S/he would still upset someone, sometime, somehow.

You can please all of the people some of the time
You can please some of the people all of the time
But you can't please all of the people all of the time.
everyone has given you great advice Trapper - I don't have much to add except for that I think we have all had this experience several times over and it can get to you sometimes.

One time we had a customer who was such a jerk to me that one of my partners got into a big yelling argument with him about it and basically threw him out of the store. It was a nightmare. It was one of those things where you look back after it's over and feel the horror of the whole situation and it just makes you feel sick to your stomach.

Luckily this has only happened once - we learned our lesson from that and although we *feel* like telling people off and throwing them out sometimes, we have learned to just grin and bear them and just be as polite as possible.

I like the idea of sending a thank you card.
Originally posted by Handy:

One time we had a customer who was such a jerk to me that one of my partners got into a big yelling argument with him about it and basically threw him out of the store.
I can beat that,

Sorry, but the story just flashed up...........

Customer (female) going ape over a refusal of a refund, foul language, shouting, threats.

I wasn't there.

Thrown out by another customer............... suited gent "Madam, I have heard enough of your foul mouth, also I am in the legal profession and you are in the wrong, please leave" (holds door open - woman leaves, muttering)
Trap, You can't be certain she's bad mouthing you anyway. It isn't unheard of for a customer to complain about the cost of the framing to you then go rave about what a wonderful job you have done to their friends. Some people are just compulsive about trying to get everything for the least cost possible.
I had one I call the Green Mat Lady. Had a
newspaper article framed for her fiance's birthday. Multi-opening, she set up the design, a out of balance bad one that I tried to talk her out of but she insisted. Chose a green mat to "go with the tree" in the picture. I told her that was a lot of green, I could visualize the finished product. She insisted.I hated the finished product. Wouldn't even sticker it. I was working at a BB then, and it wasn't a sale week, but she needed it "right away", so I made sure it was finished early, just in case.
When she picked it up, she loved it. Said it was exactly what she wanted, that he would be thrilled.
A month (!) went by and she came in furious. Said it was the worst framing job she had ever seen, she couldn't believe "they" would hire such an inept person, she demanded a refund and that she would tell everyone she knew what a crappy framer I was, and to never go in there, ever.
I was shocked, shaken, and then angry. I had even written on the order, that she got a copy of, "customer's design, green mat her choice".
So...I took it apart, said if she got her money back, the frame and mat were no longer hers. She got the newspaper articles back exactly as she gave them to me (thanks for photo corners!)
She even wrote a letter to Corporate!
The same day, Corporate received a letter from another customer saying how much they appreciated my "outstanding artistic ability and customer service", and how happy they were with the many frming jobs I had done for them.
So what do you think I focused on??? The nasty one! For days!! Made me sick to my stomach to think of it. Eventually, I got over it, but I still shudder when I have to do something with a green mat!
Turns out her fiance' found out how much she paid for it and pitched a fit. A friend of hers was another happy customer of mine and told me about it later.
Goes to show ya that when they act like that, it's rarely about you, but someone or something else and you get to be the target. Sucks, but it happens.
I agree with the thank you card. Nice 'em to death, my Mom says. May not make her feel better, but you will. Then get over it, and be thankful for the nice ones, they far outweigh the nasty ones, don't they?
Everyone is sharing stories, here is one of mine...

I had a first time customer come in with a frame job (24 x 36) from a competitor wanting the print and mats changed out using his frame and glass. I had to disassemble, mount print, cut double mats (Artique) and re-assemble. I quoted 60 bucks plus tax and he whined but agreed to the job. Two days later when he came back in he jump my *** for 30 minutes about the price. I offered everything I could to make him happy including a full refund and returning the piece to it's original condition. Nothing would make him happy. He told me 5 times how great my competitor was and how I "would never make it in this business".

It sent me in a spin checking pricing again, recalculating everything again and again. Finally, I got a friend to be a secret shopper to my competitor. Guess what, they quoted 85 bucks to do a similar job.

Two weeks later on a Saturday morning I went in Panera Bread to pick up bagels and a cup of the best coffee in town and there HE was raking some poor girl over the coals about the quality and price of their coffee. He was going on and on about how he had "bought coffee all over the world" and theirs sucked.

Moral to the story is, there are people out there that suck the life force out of those around them for no reason. Don't be a victim.
Originally posted by FramingFool:
I had a customer today who balked at a $105 price for a 36 x 15 dry-mount, spacer, UV glass and Roma frame... thought it should have been about $50.
WOW! :eek: That sounds like wholesale or a typo. Can you do my framing for me?
Originally posted by ERIC:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by FramingFool:
I had a customer today who balked at a $105 price for a 36 x 15 dry-mount, spacer, UV glass and Roma frame... thought it should have been about $50.
WOW! :eek: That sounds like wholesale or a typo. Can you do my framing for me? </font>[/QUOTE]Eric:

That's exactly what I thought!

I could never charge this and survive! At least a hundred more is more like it.
Well I ended the story yesterday and called her up at home. Introduced myself as the guy who did her framing for her and asked if everything was ok with the job. She spent a few minutes praising the job
( to the point of embarrassing me )and finaly ended with but the girl quoted such a high price, and went on to say how she has had many frame jobs done before and was willing to pay up to a certain amount but not that. I informed her quickly that she had gotten a deal and that we were still the cheapest around within a 200 mile radius that I knew of. When I checked the work order I found out that we had only charged her a few dollars more than what she says she was willing to pay. Geesh!
Well for Mom's day we will be running a spring clearancce sale alongside of a mothersday special.
So I offered this as a refund on her piece..In-fact I demanded she take it and will write out a check today and hope she won't ever come in again. Nothing is to go out of my shop without your 100% satisfation. No questions asked.
But then I thought about this and decided that first I needed to make sure her check cleared and was not cancelled.m Maybe this will buy some good will..maybe mot..probably not, but my conscience is clear. I done my best, bent over backwards for her, and went the xtra mile when I did not have to.As far as I am concerned this story is done with..haven't a clue what she is going to do with it however..we will see! In the meantime I am so gratefull that this has only happened once in all the years. Next time aroundf I will know how to handle it better, and won't be so nice about it..ha!
I hate that. When you try to do something nice for a client like a big discount and instead of saying "thank you. That's very kind of you to do that" you get "Wow! that's way to expensive.". Makes you wanna kick em out for being so rude. I've gotten that before myself. In those cases you just have to raise your white flag and say that you can't supply them with what they want for what they are willing to pay.
Tapper I got to ask this...usually I let Jay be the blunt one, but...How long do you wish to be in business for? How long have you been in business?

Those two kwestions can have the same answer if you keep this pricing scheme up. This is just foolish. Don't you think there is someone around the corner that wishes to get into framing, heck maybe out of their house? I am sure they can charge less than you. Being at the bottom as far as pricing goes makes you easy to pick off. There will always be someone around the corner that can do it cheaper than you.

You need to go to a trade show and take some pricing classes, before you loose your shirt. This is not a strategy this is bad business.

Sorry if this seems a bit strong, but I think it is needed in this case. PR has nothing to do with this.


[ 03-20-2006, 05:33 PM: Message edited by: Patrick Leeland ]
Yeah Patrick!!!!

My competitor went rock bottom pricing, then offered 100% satif, then 10% discounts.

He got more business than I.

Oh yeah, he don't frame no more. Lost too much money. He can't figure out why?!

Trapper (John? M.A.S.H.?) getting down to bare knuckle price levels is a bad idea, because your suppliers are going to raise their prices. Then where are you? Oh yeah, they charge to get the stuff to you don't they? plus incidentals, like wire screw eyes, d-rings, hangers, backing paper, (knowledge).

Don't give away the farm: the gas station doesn't give away the gas, do they? **** they even charge for air around here! It's now 75¢, used to be 50¢, no wait 25¢, wait it once was free!

If you want to be in business next year charge for your services this year.

Reminds me, I have to revisit my pricing! (Upwards not down!)
I agree with most everything said, but especially with AnneL's comments. She won't complain to any of her friends about the price...she will probably bring your name into the conversation in a very good light when her friends admire the piece!

I have a reputation as being "expensive". Whether that is a true or not is mute. I also have a reputation as doing top quality work and I like to think that is true. In conversations I have overheard people dropping my name as their framer of choice as a sort of bragging right. I'll take that... :cool:

Not that you can totally ignore other's pricing but set your own prices based on what you need to charge to produce the quality of work you choose to produce.

More businesses fail due to undercharging than overcharging.

Dave Makielski
Hi Dave- I agree with your comment on more businesses fail due to undercharging than overcharging.

And, would like to add that more businesses fail due to not selling enough than selling too much

The key is to have pricing that is profitable while still being appealing to the a widest possible spectrum

A smart blend of some aggressively priced product, some competitively priced middle of the road product, and some "the sky is the limit" fancy pants products will probably out perform any one single segment

Today's marketplace makes it difficult to rely upon just one factor
I agree with Dave.

If you provide high-quality framing and material, exceptional service, good environment, and you are perceived as "expensive", there is nothing wrong with that.

A customer has to realize they are getting their money's worth.

Many times, a customer will say they really didn't want to spend that amount of money, but when they pick up the finished product, they are really happy and they think the money was well spent. And I believe it was.

The world is full of very expensive boutiques, restaurants, hotels, airlines, cruise-lines and spas. Last time I checked, they are all doing well, thank you. Because they do offer the elements I mentioned above.

We all go to restaurants, and if an expensive one lives to its reputation as providing great food, service and ambiance, I don't feel bad paying a hefty check. And that's for something intangible, not art that will grace my house for 20 years.

If one is perceived that they are just plain expensive or over-priced, it is not good for business. Any business.
Paul-That is a great analolgy. Having eaten in many restaurants (and other reasons) I might have a little understanding of the restaurant example

You are dead on about the combination of great food, great ambiance and great service. Recently, we were in Chicago and went to a great steakhouse right across the street from a Ruth's Chris (Sullivan's). Tried to get reservations at RC's but were booked and the concierge recommended Sullivan's

It was great and they had a "pit crew" efficeincy that amazed me and my wife. After watching the way they did biz, I asked for the manager and complimented him on the way he ran his shop. We shared our "expertise" and had a wonderful visit

My point? How many of us "think" we operate at that level? That our shops truly "justify" the prices we charge with those exemplary levels of service, product and ambiance. My suggestion is that there are not many (and many will become defensive and tell me otherwise-But, it just ain't so)

These corrections start with not what we think about our operations, but what our consumers think about them.

The folks at Sullivan's passed that test before the gentleman offered to pick up the tab
A few years ago we had a woman who just seemed never to be satisfied.

"That is not the color of mat I ordered." "I think it's about a 32nd out." and of course "It's just so darn expensive." [We're talking a single paper mat, cheapest black frame kind of person that takes an hour to sell to while she complains loudly about price to other customers.]

Finally I was fed up and knew that Shar would never say anything out of fear of this womans mouth. So as she came in with only her purse... and maybe two 2x3 photos "why can't you just squeeze them in a $6 5x7 and maybe put some free scrap matting behind..."

She got to the counter and I came right out with the Yellow pages. Which I was opening to picture framing.
"I've got that information that you will need right here." As I tore out the whole section of framers; took a black marker and marked out our name.

"There you go." Handing it to here and stepping to the door and opening it, "That is all you will need in your search for a new framer. Thank you for your past patronage; but we can no longer afford to help you. Have a great day, cover up I think it's going to rain."

[Ed note: I couldn't find that emoticon of the gasping speachless mouth of a fish out of water..both the customer and Shar.]

About a month later, a new customer came in. VERY nice order with several items. And made a point that in a couple of months she would want to start tackeling the "upstairs"....

When we asked how she had heard about us... [her address was other side of city (20 miles)] she giggled, and named our old customer. :eek:

She told us how the old customer had ranted and gone on so about this "horrid" experience from this framer that she had only tollerated for so many years... and to be sumerily dismissed...

So the new one just KNEW that she had finally found her new best friend.

Actually, we now frame for 4 of that little lunch group. We do a lot of Red Hat stuff... I wonder why? :D
Baer that is a gem. Sometimes the folks that complain make it a habit. You wont satisfy them if it is free. Others know these people act like this. They will know who is right and who is a PIA

I was once told that the public will tell you what it wants, not the other way around. You may think you got the world, but in reality it sits and sits..and will continue to sit until you make the world believe that this is what they want. Most often however it is them that tell you what they want. I don't know if there is a clear cut answer.
I really do like Bob Doyles quip about charging today to be around tomorrow.
Got a lawyer in and he never blinked an eyebrow about the price..It was me this time who went "woa is that spendy". Course I mumbled it under my breath.
One of the things you have to learn when doing sales is that expensive is relative. What you may think of as expensive, your customer might think is cheap. It's hard, but you have to put aside your own biases and learn to say "the total comes to $500.00. Will that be check or credit card." :D
Had a discussion with my Roma rep yesterday about this very issue .... he cited a conversation he had with one of his clients, centering on the presumption that the client's customers couldn't afford this or that moulding ... the rep responded by saying not to underestimate the customers .... put 'em on the wall and do yer d**nest if the situation warrants ... so the client stocked a few of those pricier Romas, with the understadning that if the customers freaked over the long run, off the wall they would come.

Well, the obvious outcome of this was that the customers, by and large, didn't bat an eye ... they knew exactly what they were getting (thanks to a competent sales effort), and down the money pluncked.

Moral: Low Buck is appealing, and, sometimes, necessary..... but don't underestimate your customers.

Of course, this is relevent only if one's business is not designed to be a WalMart in the first place.