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Why you need to help prospects appreciate the details

Or, a trip to a hypothetical furniture shop.

This is adapted from some feedback I gave to one web dev on facebook.

He had posted up some feedback for his own freelancing site, which I happily looked at. Unsurprisingly, the site was beautiful, yet it missed out key details in his past work.

So, I gave this hypothetical example

Into the store...

Let's imagine you were looking for a new table.

You walk into a shop that's got lots of cheap, attractive tables that's got you nodding in approval.

Out of curiosity, you wonder into the high-end shop next door. Their stuff that looks a bit nice, but you can't work out how they justify 2x the price. After all, you know nothing about furniture design.

"After all, you know nothing about furniture design"

But you've got time to kill before meeting your friend for coffee, so you figure you might as well check out one more high-end shop. As soon you walk in, the experience is completely different.

The owner takes the time to explain how he spent ages finding a varnish that will keep your stuff looking new for many years. He crouches down with you to look underneath and talk through how the joints he uses are more labour intensive, but make it extra durable. How would you be feeling at this point?

I'm guessing you'd start realising why his tables are worth the price. Not just because you can tell the difference, but because he explained why these differences benefit you.

Your industry is no different

Well, [insert your industry] isn't any different.

Yes, you can look at your past work and see all the details that made the difference between you and a cheap alternative. But do you think your potential client can do the same?

For example, only other web developers can naturally spot the difference between a generic template and something custom. Plus, a business owner won't care unless they think it'll impact their revenue.

If you think your extra efforts are worth their money, it's your responsibility to be that friendly store owner to walks the visitor through judging the work on offer and explaining why they should give a damn.

Adding annotations

In a shocking turn of events, I'm trying to follow my own advice!

I've been adding annotations for my portfolio items. That way my potential clients can understand the reasoning behind each statement, seeing it as more than just pretty words.

For example, here's one of my email rewrites I've annotated.

It doesn't walk the viewer through everything, but it aims to give a glimpse at the deeper reasoning behind my writing.

Takeaway: be their guide

So your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to help demystify your process. 

Take the time to show your prospect exactly why you're worth the price. Suddenly you will have separated yourself out from the competitors who just make pretty websites.

Good luck!

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