How to Talk About Cost


Talking about cost should be part of your business plan. And there’s a simple, specific way to address cost that’ll bring you more customers and potential team members. 

Marcus Sheridan, a famous marketing guide and author, will teach you how to talk about cost in a way that makes people want to work with you.

Figure out how much your products or services cost

You already know this, but according to Marcus, you need to write it down. List the major products and services you have. Which ones are alike, and which ones are different? Remember, Pareto’s Law says that 20% of your products or services make up 80% of your revenue. Start there. 

Write about costs for customers

When Marcus says to write about costs, he doesn’t mean just slapping a line or two on your website. He means writing full-blown articles that teach your customers about the costs of your products and services.

Every cost article should have five sections: 

  1. What factors in the industry drive the cost of a product or service up?
  2. What industry factors keep the cost down?
  3. What makes some companies so expensive?
  4. Why are some companies so cheap?
  5. Where do you fit into the industry’s overall cost picture?

Industry cost factors 

The first two sections of your articles are the meat and potatoes, so they should add up to at least 1,000 words. (That may sound like a lot, but it’s easier than you think. Plus, it’ll help improve your Google search rankings and bring you more web traffic. More traffic equals more business.) 

Company cost factors

The third and fourth sections sound similar to the first two, but they are different. Instead of writing about the whole industry, now you’re writing about how things like company size and quality can impact cost. 

If you’ve ever lost bids because another company was cheaper, now’s your chance to educate customers about why some companies are so cheap. Teach them where it’s okay to save money and where it’s a mistake to cheap out. 

Your cost factors

Finally, it’s time to talk about you. If you tend to cost 5% more than your competitors, talk about why you cost 5% more. Communicating that the right way builds trust with the customer. And when they trust you, they’re happy to pay more because they believe they’re getting a better product. 

Think of each article like a funnel. It starts with a broad picture of the whole industry. Then, it narrows down to look at how things work for different companies. Finally, the article ends by pointing to you as the trusted source. 

Write about salaries for recruits

You’ll need to write separate articles for potential team members. After all, you’ll pay them—not the other way around. Recruits want to know how much money they’ll make in specific jobs, so teach them about salaries for those positions. 

Now, these articles will still have five sections, and they’ll be a lot like the ones for customers. They are:

  1. What factors in the industry drive salaries up?
  2. What factors drive them down?
  3. Why do some companies pay more?
  4. Why do some companies pay less?
  5. How do salaries at your company fit into the overall picture?

Be thorough when you talk about factors that lead to higher or lower salaries. Don’t just assume recruits know those things. 

However, when you talk about salaries at your company, it’s best to give a range or percentage. For example, you could say, “Dozer operators at our company usually make about 3% above the industry average.” You don’t have to (and shouldn’t) reveal your employees’ exact salaries. 

Depending on the products or services you offer, you’ll probably need multiple pieces of content about cost or salary on your website. Creating separate articles for each topic is also helpful because people only want an answer to their specific question. Don’t overwhelm them with information they don’t want.

Benefits of talking about cost

If you create content that talks openly and honestly about cost, you’ll stand out in the industry. People will notice you, and they’ll trust you more. You’ll become the industry thought leader by saying the things others won’t say. That’s how you grow your business.

Of course, cost is just one of the five big things customers and recruits want to know before they work with you. In his next lesson, Marcus takes on the second big thing: problems.

← The Big 5: Cost

The Big 5: Problems →

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