Just because we’re not the cheapest option doesn’t mean we can’t appeal to price-conscious customers. We just have to lure them into the tent and level-up the importance they place on quality — from zero to anything more than zero. It’s simple math.
We can do this with discounting, a strategy that has exploded over the last few years. This means free Lyft rides, loyalty programs, or $5 off a customer’s first order. In a B2B sense, it’s a half-day of free consulting, a readiness evaluation, a low-feature free version, or 14-day free trial. Whatever the discount or promo, its purpose is to make us the cheapest option for a limited time — just long enough for the customer to understand why quality matters to us.
If we want to push customers toward a behavior that is better for our business, we discount that option.
Invariably, a first-time customer discount will attract non-price-conscious consumers as well — especially those who believe quality matters but don’t yet know why. It’s an opportunity to play on their gut feeling — their unspoken desire for quality — and they’ll appreciate getting a deal along the way. Again: This is only for a limited time. We can’t discount forever. Every time I go to one of those discount clothing stores, there’s always a red line through a higher price that I’m not paying. I know no one is paying that price. I just don’t care how long my socks last.
Discounting is also an opportunity to use price as a tool for growth and optimization. If we want to push customers toward a behavior that is better for our business, we discount that option. We do this at my current startup, Spiffy, an on-demand mobile vehicle care and maintenance company. We want to take care of vehicles in office parks, so we work with property managers to set up days for us to service multiple vehicles on-site. Then, we offer a discount for employees of that office park on that day. This saves us a bunch of time and money, which we pass back to the customer.