You know, my friends are amazing. Whenever they see someone looking for a photographer, they literally attack them with my email, website, instagram, social security number, list of my favorite foods, I love it! But every time someone used to tag me in a facebook post that started off “looking for a cheap wedding photographer” I would cringe because I knew they saw "photographer" and wanted to help, but I also knew Im not the cheapest and probably not this person's ideal photographer, rate-wise.
It is always weird though to see “cheap photographer” seekers, half-ass attempt to seek out a professional photographer, but I know they just typed that from their $1,200 macbook. Or see someone tell a local jewelry maker they "cant afford" their stuff while they're dressed head to toe in Free People. Literally. Look yall, don't be fooled. Everyone can afford what you are selling. Now whether they value it at your rate or not, is another story.
Sometimes people can be quick to make solopreneurs and small businesses feel like your prices are too high, but they aren't. Because Im sure you did hella research to set them and they are fair and you're the boss so even if they weren't, it doesn't matter. Sometimes people just want the amazing shit you're selling for a price that will allow them to still irresponsibly hit up Ponce City Market in the same week and not feel like they've completely failed at adulting the next time they check their bank account. It happens.
Ladies, don't let anybody make you feel like your rates are too high. You gotta eat, you probably gotta dog to feed too and your time is money just like everyone else's.
Truth bomb but like not really, 9 out of 10, what we make and sell is a want. Not a need. Art, handmade goods: it's a luxury to own that...now, y'all know that! You are a luxury <3 People need food and water. Well, water I could go without. Food though, I neeeeeeeeed. But (although branding might lead people to believe otherwise) nobody needs wedding photography or ceramic vases or a new website or a vanilla latte or those high-waist jeans from Urban Outfitters. I mean, they got some cute stuff though. But still! People want these things, naturally, but they don’t need them. So your prices should reflect that. We as humans and consumers, we set a value to everything we look at, touch, taste, experience, things we want and things we don’t want. So we're either going to buy something we want or we're not.
When you're grappling about setting prices for your epic goods or services, please remember, "Cheap" and "Expensive" are relative to the financial situation of the babe you're selling to and their own personal disposable income. Nasty Woman A may value a pair of Giuseppe heels while Nasty Woman B could care less about any shoe from anywhere because this month she has to concentrate on paying her blood-sucking student loan. And so NWA saves up her coins for shoes and NWB saves up her coins to pay off her loan. Great! Both fab decisions in my book. Boss Babe A may value a dress from Anthropologie; Boss Babe B may value getting her dog groomed. Whatever! The point is, if something is important enough to a gal, she will take the money from her bank account and she will buy it, whatever it is, at a price that she and she alone can "afford". And if she can’t buy it today, she may make a mental note and save up for it. Right? This could be clothes for work, a BMW, a trip to Whole Foods, or you and your epic goods or services.
And just like our favorite boutiques set their prices, so do we. And just like nobody would ever ask Bill Hallman to discount something that is clearly not on sale, neither should they be asking you! In actuality, nothing is ever a matter of being “too expensive”, it’s a matter of how much someone values it and if their sources of income allow them to buy it without remorse or not.
So, for those that have ever tried to tell you that they “can’t afford” what you're selling at the price you so strategically created to keep your lights on, you can say it, its bullshit. It's just not true. We can afford any luxury we want: louboutins, a down payment on a home, a night out at Bacchanalia (yummmm!), a macbook air, solange's new album on itunes, a new iphone that does the same thing as the old iphone (no judgement if you upgraded, just saying), tickets to the super bowl, a skirt from Alice and Olivia, a Tulum, Mexico vacation, anything…including whatever it is that you do or sell, if you're willing to pay for it. And if somebody wants what you're selling, just like they can find coins for all those clothes hanging in their closet, they can find a coin or two for you. Don't ever forget that.