Price Transparency: Flowers Part III


Preston Bailey Charging Prices Cost Low Centerpiece Flowers

As I promised, I will continue this week to discuss the issue of pricing and transparency. This is an important topic for not only the floral industry but for all vendors who work in the wedding and event planning business.

However, before continuing, I want to remind you that I sold my first centerpiece for only $75. I could have easily told myself that my clients would never pay more and kept charging that price. But I didn’t.

As I see it, regardless of what city or market you work in, you have two choices:

1. You can continue to accept the lie that your clients will never pay more.

2. Or, you can start creating designs that are so different and so compelling that your clients will have no choice but to happily pay more.

Dear Readers, you need to embrace the possibility that you are an artist. You are not just selling flowers. Potentially, you could also become a commercially successful visual artist. It’s up to you as an artist to change your clients’ minds and convince them that your work is worth more.

It’s not easy, even for me, but I am always open to working with clients who appreciate my work enough to pay for its’ real value. Do not sell yourself short. Be diligent and patient. And, eventually, you will create a new market in your area.

As I continue to write these posts, I’d like to also answer a few of your questions. Let’s start with this one from a commenter named Delilah:

“While your centerpieces look beautiful, your work is appallingly overpriced. You cannot suggest that you don’t get bulk discounts for items such as vases and Styrofoam squares. I guess you have enough high-end clients who are willing to pay for your services, but this should not be the way everyone should price their service. Just disgusting!!”

Dearest Delilah:

Disgusting, ha, that is a very strong word.

Everyone thinks that working with flowers is a fairytale job. But looks can be deceiving. If you’re a florist, then you know; it’s a lot of hard work and long hours. I started out as a florist, and for fifteen years I was so excited to be working with flowers, I never charged enough. Consequently, I almost lost my entire business. It took me many years to develop the confidence to charge enough to make a decent living!

I am not pretending to tell everyone how to charge for their work. Especially since I don’t know everyone’s markets. What I am doing is sharing the method of pricing that helped me save my business.

But, of course, Delilah, you don’t have to follow any of my pricing suggestions. Everyone has to do what works for them. Good luck to you.

Dear Readers, how would you answer Delilah? As a florist, do you have the courage to charge what you deserve?

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