The Cost of Everything… The Value of Nothing
Is charging a prospective client a ‘proposal development fee’ a good idea?
Last week, I contacted a company that sources cars for contract lease/hire to see what deals he might offer for my daughter who had recently passed her driving test. He phoned me to suggest he could help, but there would be a £100 up-front fee to carry out his research, to ensure the enquiries he gets are serious. He explained that his business is full of time wasters – folk who would get him to do the research/leg work and then go off and try and find a better deal elsewhere. I don’t blame him in the slightest.
In fact, I applaud him.
If only the ‘communications’ industry could do the same! Imagine a world with no time wasters and only customers who want you for your years of experience and what you can bring to their table… and wouldn’t balk at being charged a small percentage up front for the development of a proposal of strong creative ideas! This would soon sort out the time wasters from the rest.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]
I know most prospective clients are well meaning, but we’ve all been there – regardless of our industries and services offered. There have been many instances of ‘prospects’ that become erroneous waste of time – and we end up chasing our tail with never a distinct possibility of a conclusion one way or another.
It happened recently. A well respected business in the digi-tech space got in touch with us through recommendation by a highly respected/high profile investor. They needed PR..and they wanted to start quickly. Two meetings and a four days spent developing an internationally focused PR programme…and …nada! Not a sausage! No further correspondence. no email response..phone calls going to voicemail. messages left…no calls returned…etc… this was November last year and so, it’s another one we put down to bad luck….and bad manners!
Civility costs nothing and even a ‘thanks, but no thanks’, is an outcome.
So, this idea of charging an up front cost for ideas development, might have given credence to the seriousness of the enquiry…and like my call to the car hire company, would give food for thought to time-wasters who know the cost of everything and the value of so little.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]