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How to respond when wedding couples ask the price question too soon

How to respond when wedding couples ask the price question too soon. Look at it from a bride and grooms viewpoint

There are a lot of frustrations going on inside a couples head when wedding planning.
Brides and grooms may source around 20 suppliers for their big day, often with minimal professional wedding planning experience. And when you factor in couples may shortlist three suppliers in each category before making a decision, that’s at least sixty initial enquiries (generating at least sixty responses) just to get their wedding in motion. It’s no wonder couples sometimes use price for whittling down the massive choice.

Sometimes couples ask the price question too early because they don’t know what else to ask. They don’t yet know about the intricacies that make you shine, so they can’t ask about that. It may be the first time the bride and groom are hiring a videographer or venue for e.g., and so they may be asking purely out of naivety.

A naïve couple may have a preconceived idea of how much they believe a celebrant, caterer or florist for e.g. may cost, but this approach is flawed because at that stage in the conversation, brides and grooms won’t know what makes you unique, trustworthy and potentially ‘The One’.

They don’t know what they don’t know

It’s Saturday, you go to your favourite bar, instead of getting in free as usual, you’re asked to pay because there’s entertainment. You think “Really! Another out of tune screecher!” Reluctantly you cough-up. Halfway through the evening, an artist sings from behind a curtain; it’s pulled back revealing Sade, followed by Corinne Bailey Rae then Adele.

It turned out the artists had given their time free, and your door payment was a donation to the GAAP Orphanage Foundation. You ended up having the time of your life. The experience surpassed what you thought would happen by miles.

How much would you value the evening before knowing about the secret entertainment? How much would you pay for it after discovery?
If you’ve got star quality but just quote before explaining your brilliance, can you see how you may be rejected on price because your couple doesn’t know who you are nor what you can do?

Seek first to understand, before being understood – Stephen Covey

A couples initial budget for your service is often a made-up figure gathered from their lifetime party-planning experiences. For example, if they believe the average price for a photographer should be £X, or a DJ £Y, couples will not want to move too far above those numbers…. unless you can clarify where the extra value is.

How to respond when wedding couples ask the price question too soon
Wedding Planning and how to answer the ‘price’ question

With this in mind, let’s make two assumptions:

  1. Your wedding experience delivers thrilling results.
  2. You charge more than average.

By giving your price BEFORE you’ve had the opportunity to articulate your value, you’ll potentially come across as expensive, and eliminated from the selection process prematurely. Has that ever happened to you?

A smarter way to respond when couples ask the price question too soon is to deflect it, elegantly

Imagine an email hits your screen; the couple asks: “Can you give a rough idea of your price first as I don’t want to waste your time?” Instead of sliding down their price comparison funnel, (a route you are more likely to lose), move them into your value-driven funnel by using a price deflector that delays answering the price question until you’ve first articulated your value.

I initially created the price deflector template for myself, because I found whenever I quoted before explaining my value, typically just 2/10 couples booked. The eight that did not thought I was too expensive. But whenever I met to articulate my value first, 8/10 booked saying I was exactly what they were looking for.

Download and customise the Price Deflector here: it’s an elegant way to get couples back into your value-driven funnel, and out of their price comparison funnel. This paves the way to for you to price reveal AFTER you’ve expressed the emotional benefits enjoyed through your signature wedding experience.

Coming full-circle, about 60% of the couples who receive my price deflector accept my invitation to meet. I’m happy to let the other 40% go because price-shoppers are not my avatar.

Be creative and thoughtful, customise your price deflector download to reflect your brilliance, and it will serve you well.

In closing, there will be times when you will want to comply with their request for prices, but still want to push for a meeting. This is why I’ve also created Template 2, which helps you craft an eloquent email response that meets both needs.

Main header Photo credit
Please download both templates here:

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Further reading

Tracy Butterfield

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