Archivo de la categoría: PR

Guía para establecer precio o fee de servicios a un cliente

En varias oportunidades se charló y debatió en Australinos acerca de los criterios a tener en cuenta a la hora de cobrarle por servicios prestados a un cliente. ¿Cuánto cobrar? ¿Qué tener en cuenta a la hora de establecer un fee o de ponerse un precio? ¿Cómo estimar cuánto valen nuestros servicios?

A continuación una interesante nota (lamento que sea sólo en inglés) con criterios para tener en cuenta. Básicamente una guía que plantea los beneficios de comenzar con productos/servicios for free, apelando al “experience good”: un producto que necesita de un período de uso antes de que el cliente pueda determinar su valor. Otra de las opciones planteadas es comenzar con un precio de entrada bajo, confiando en que el producto/servicio de uno creará valor en la empresa cliente.

El artículo habla también de la ley del costo marginal y del precio de largo plazo en el mercado. Hace más hincapié en internet e incluso en el modelo free que plantea, pero sirve como guía para levantar buenos criterios a la hora de ponernos un precio. A continuación:

The Complete guide to fremium business models

Fuente: techcrunch.com

Editor’s note: This guest post was written by Uzi Shmilovici, CEO and founder of Future Simple, which creates online software for small businesses. The post is based on a study done with Professor Eric Budish, an economics professor at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. It also includes ideas and comments from Peter Levine, a Venture Partner at Andreessen-Horowitz and a professor at Stanford GSB

The idea of offering your product or a version of it for free has been a source of much debate.

Pricing is always tricky. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs don’t give it enough thought. They will often copy the pricing strategy of similar products, base their decisions on pompous statements made by “experts” or rely on broken rationale (we worked hard so we should charge $X).

Free is even trickier and with so many opinions about it, we thought it would be refreshing to take a critical approach and dive deep into why some companies are very successful at employing the model while other companies fail. We’ve looked into economics academic papers, behavioral psychology books and strategies that worked for companies to come up with the key concepts below.

The Law of Marginal Cost

Pricing plays a huge part in competing for customers. Here’s an economic law that holds almost as much truth as the law of gravity: in a perfectly competitive market, the long-term product price (aka “market clearing price”) will be the marginal cost of production.

Guess what? Because of declining hosting and bandwidth costs, for most Internet products the marginal cost today is practically … zero.

In other words, if the cost to serve a customer (support aside) is zero, the long-term price of the product in the market will be zero (because of competitive pressure).

An Experience Good

At the core of the “Free” models are the products or services being offered to the customer. Most Internet products or services fall into the definition of an Experience Good: a product that needs a period of use before the customer can determine the value they can derive from it.

A good example is Dropbox. Consider Drew Houston’s words: “The fact was that Dropbox was offering a product that people didn’t know they needed until they tried.”

There are plenty of academics who looked into the pricing of Experience Goods. In 1983, the Economist Carl Shapiro wrote a fascinating paper about this subject. His conclusion was that since customers tend to underestimate the value of a product, the optimal pricing for an experience good is a low introductory price which is then increased when the customer realizes the value of the product.

In some cases, a customer might overestimate the value of the product. In that case, the optimal pricing strategy is to charge as much in the beginning or to lock in customers with long-term contracts.

This is why customers are reluctant to buy when someone asks them to prepay for a service or product or sign a long-term contract.

Hence, the introductory price is a signaling mechanism. The conclusion?  A low entrance price signals that you are confident that your product will create value for the customer.

The Psychology of Free

Much has been written about the Psychology of Free. Two books that looked specifically into the subject are “Free” by Chris Anderson and “Predictably Irrational” by Dan Ariely. Putting it simply, Free is an emotional hot button that immediately reduces the mental barriers for the customer. Free makes people think that they have “nothing to lose” since many ignore time as an investment.

From this perspective, free is a huge accelerator of adoption. The flip side of this is that after using the product for free, it is very hard to get the customer to start paying for it. This phenomenon was broad enough to get its own name: “The penny gap”—the hardest part is to get your customer to pay you the first penny. This is why it is so critical to choose your premium features wisely.

Decision Factors

If all that is true, it seems like Free (or Freemium) is the answer. Well…. not so fast. The decision is definitely not easy. Here’s a basic framework to help you make a more informed decision. A word of caution though: for every complex problem there’s a simple solution … and it’s wrong. The framework is helpful as a thinking tool but there’s no magic formula.

Here’s a set of questions that you’ll need to ask yourself:

  1. How big do I want my company to be? If you are looking to build a lifestyle business that’ll make you $8,000 a month and you have a good product, you can probably do without Freemium. If you want to build a dominant company that has a substantial market share, Freemium can help you accelerate adoption.
  2. What is the value of the free users? Across all successful Freemium companies, there is a way of making money or saving money from the free users. Either by saving on marketing costs (Dropbox) or by making money from ads or data (Pandora, Evernote, Mint) or both. If you cannot turn your free users into savings in marketing costs or revenues from third parties—figure out how!
  3. What is the cost to serve free users?  This is a critical aspect of the model. If you spend a lot of money and/or time servicing free users, you are going to lose a lot of money. The cost of servicing free users must be lower than the dollar value they provide.
  4. How big is my market? “The easiest way to get 1 million people paying is to get 1 billion people using,” says Phil Libin, the CEO of Evernote. Free adds another conversion step on your way to revenues. You need a big market to have enough people who will be paying you at the end of the day.
  5. Is there value to one customer from other customers using the product? This will determine how many new users the free users will refer. There are three levels of value:
  1. Inherent value – You can use Skype only if the person you talk with also uses Skype. You can share a Dropbox folder only with other Dropbox users. In this case, Freemium can be a powerful strategy.
  2. Added value – You wouldn’t want to be the only user of LinkedIn. You derive value from other people using it. In this case, Freemium can help you gain traction if you use an effective invitation mechanism.
  3. No value – You don’t care if someone is using Evernote or not. The only reason for one person to tell another about the product or service is if they think it is awesome.

The Types of “Free”

One of the key factors in making Freemium work is the structure of the offering. What is it that you offer for free vs. charge? There are different types of free strategies. Let’s take a look at the popular ones:

  1. True Freemium – Give a version of the product for free and charge a fee for the other versions. There are two ways to go about this:
  1. Value based – The most successful type of Freemium strategy. The more a customer uses the product, the more value she derives, the higher the switching costs are, and at some point she’ll hit a usage limit and convert to a paying customer. Evernote and Dropbox are beautiful examples of this.
  2. Characteristic based – For example offering the product for free for one user (so it is based on company size for instance). Let’s think about a B2B application. If I’m a freelancer, I will use the application forever and I will never have to upgrade. If I’m a 3-person company, I can’t add more users and try the application for real and hence might not get to the point where I see the value in using it.
  3. Free Product for a Cross Subsidy  – Give one product for free and charge for complementary products.
  4. Time Based Free Trial – Give a free trial for X days and start charging once the trial ends. The issue here is figuring out what X is. On one hand you want to create a sense of urgency, on the other hand you need the customer to see the value in the system.

Open Source as a Free model

Lately I’ve seen many entrepreneurs confuse Open Source with Free so I thought it would be helpful to make the distinction. An open source model can definitely accelerate the distribution of your product and is a viable free model. It has two main advantages. You might get developers to contribute to your product (see WordPress). By doing that you can accelerate the development of your product. The other advantage is that you give customers peace of mind as they have control over the source code. You can then make money from selling pro features or value added services. There’s a critical distinction here and that is that your code is out there and anyone can start a company to commercialize this code. Bear in mind that it is very hard (often impossible) to reverse a decision to open-source.
The Last Bit And The Secret To Success

There are many factors to consider when you are evaluating whether to use the Freemium model or not. However, there’s one last secret that I didn’t share with you. During the study, while looking at the successful Freemium companies, a pattern emerged. They all had phenomenal products. All of these decision factors are useless if the product or service you are offering is nothing short of amazing. If your product is not creating great value for its users, no tactic in the world will make Freemium work for you.

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Archivado bajo Branding, Comunicación, PR, Publicidad

Clubs de miembros on line, ¿podrán salvar a los diarios?

Por: Marina Kempny

Comparto nota de Fast Company, hoy que abundan las membresías y clubs no sólo a fines de marketing sino también para el acceso a los contenidos e información.

¿Pagar o no pagar por contenido? Ya no desde la perspectiva del negocio de una empresa de información/contenidos, sino de los usuarios, aunque la que se cobre sea solamente cierta información seleccionada, ¿valen en el mundo web las mismas reglas del off line? (pagar por la información).  ¿La regla es el medio?

Could Paid Online Member’s Clubs Save Newspapers?

BY Kit EatonWed Aug 12, 2009 at 10:27 AM

The U.K.’s The Guardian newspaper is about to try an alternative model to charging for online content that sounds infinitely more digestible: Bonus content “member’s clubs.”

The idea was spawned from a survey email sent out to registered members of the the paper’s Web site, with the following text–“The Guardian is considering launching a members’ club which will provide extra benefits in return for an annual or monthly fee. These benefits might include, for example, a welcome pack, exclusive content, live events, special offers from our partners and the opportunity to communicate with our journalists.”

After the story surfaced, to quell assumptions that such a club would result in some of the existing online content slipping into the pay-per-view zone, The Guardian’s director of digital content made it clear that that’s not going to be the case, with an emphasis on the point that restrictive pay walls would turn away users.

This is interesting–it’s a wholly different take than some suggestions made by Rupert Murdoch that the future of online newspapers is to charge for all published content. The Guardian‘s thinking is far more groovy, in a progressively Internet-savvy kind of way, and it borrows a jot or two from the marketing of DVD and Blu-ray disc extras and even Apple’s upcoming Cocktail music album-wrapper. These last three content delivery systems are marketed, in part, on the idea that behind-the-scenes footage, or special artworks and video extras will increase sales of the product–and clearly The Guardian feels the same way. In fact, with a suggestion that club membership could involve direct communication with the paper’s journalists, The Guardian is even tapping into the whole Twittering-celebrities meme, which has brought a wholly new degree of accessibility to stars.

Would you consider canceling your physical copy, and going online to pay for a subscription for additional content from your fave newspaper? It’s certainly an intriguing idea, and if newspaper publishers are to remain in business in the digital future this is certainly a business model that’s more likely to win-over the public than charging for access to all content.

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Quiénes NO son los viejos comunicadores

630 palabras sobre los nuevos comunicadores

Escrito por José Playo – 08/07/09 a las 08:07:13 pm – Peinate que viene gente 
Un público nuevo se come las uñas. Del otro lado de la ventanita, la partera del futuro tira de la cabeza del comunicador que iba a renovar la confianza de la gente; no sale, entonces crece la sospecha de que deberemos seguir escuchando las mismas boludeces sobre las tecnologías y las herramientas multimediales que han venido a destruir el mundo y nos están consumiendo.

 

El público nuevo ya no tolera cascarrabias hablando de Internet como si fuera un pantalón nevado que pronto pasará de moda. Es un público silencioso y paciente, un montón de gente sin raza ni credo que sabe que la Red acelera procesos y sirve, fundamentalmente, para transferir información y conocimientos. Es un público que apuesta por la efectividad y los caminos cortos, que sabe que la enredadera de la paranoia no prende bien en los muros de Facebook, donde la tijera de podar del sentido común hace trizas los brotes que crecen al pedo.

El viejo comunicador, apostado en la redacción solitaria de un diario bohemio, o anquilosándose en un plano americano dentro de un canal de noticias, da batalla por inercia contra ellos, porque cree que las nuevas generaciones son igual de boludas que las herramientas, o que son todos floggers y hay que hablar de sus pelos.

El viejo comunicador está apostado en el andarivel de la comodidad, viendo el humito del tren del siglo 21; cree que esperarán que acabe de fumar y se sacuda las cenizas de su traje de amarillismo e ignorancia. Su tranquilidad se nutre del desconocimiento: ni puta idea tiene de la kilométrica línea de controles remotos silenciándolo a botonazos, o cambiándolo por un documental sobre cultivo de helechos.

Los nativos digitales —a quienes debería respetar si pretende hacer su trabajo en serio— le han picado hace rato el boleto; ya no disfrutan de los informativos que refritan bloopers de YouTube o hacen foco en el sensacionalismo relleno de escándalos y presentados como pescado fresco. Pasan. No sonríen. No perdonan. Se van.

El comunicador que subestima a su público se aplana hasta convertirse en carne de blog o en tela para programas de errores televisivos: sus trucos engañosos sobre la gripe y la inseguridad han sido descubiertos, está solo —a lo sumo con una coequiper— hablándole a una generación con el ojo entrenado en campañas virales que descubre la falacia y se agenda no perdonarlo por eso.

El arma nuclear del periodismo, La Información, ahora está en manos del común de los mortales; la ven de cerca, la estudian, le copian la fórmula y le sacan provecho. Los usuarios hoy consumen y procesan con voracidad los datos de su interés, pasándose por las bolas los pronósticos agoreros y las encuestas sobre tendencia. Al viejo comunicador, para subsistir, sólo le queda la tremenda responsabilidad de empezar a construir una relación distinta con ellos; algo desde cero, con ánimos mucho más modestos.

Todavía rebotan entre las paredes de la obstinación los argumentos periodísticos basados en la negación de las nuevas tecnologías: salen de las bocas de los que odian el mail, no saben qué es Facebook y opinan que Twitter es una boludez para pendejos con tiempo.

Los comunicadores éstos —viles, soberbios— mastican teorías de la muerte del libro a manos del blog y dicen que quienes no leen sus aburridísimas columnas son “malos lectores nuevos que reemplazan a los que se van muriendo”. Los comunicadores éstos se pasean ojerosos, malhumorados y cubiertos de maquillaje, frente al cajón donde se está velando su empecinamiento.

Si lloran, es por enojo, porque no saben cómo cambiar el mundo nuevo. Es fácil identificarlos, llevan la boca más abierta que los ojos.

No estaría mal que empezaran a entender que el mundo está esperando que cambien ellos.

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Campaña y gestión política: nuevo escenario 2.0

La charla de café de hoy es sobre el nuevo escenario 2.0 para diseñar y llevar adelante, hoy, una campaña (y por qué no, gestión) política.
Les paso una presentacion llevada adelante por Lucas Lanza en la Universidad de San Andres (octubre de 2008). Es muy interesante y me parece que tira mucha luz sobre el tema:
http://www.slideshare.net/lucaslanza/nuevos-medios-nuevos-escenarios-para-la-accin-poltica-presentacin-udesa-presentation
 
Luego de ver esta presentacion, me acordé de un video (Did you know) que me pasaron hace poco. En este caso, el enfoque es bastante más general, y creo que puede servir como disparador para el diseño de campañas como las de Obama en el caso del marketing politico, asi como otras campañas de marketing, o estrategias de RRHH, posicionamiento de referentes de opinión, el laburo de periodistas, etc. No nos quedemos sólo con marketing, el paradigma cambió para todos.
 
Volviendo a la presentación de la Universidad de San Andres, me parece que puede ser tambien una muy buena conclusión del video Did you know (desde la mirada de la acción politica lógicamente). Y una invitación a que cada uno en su rubro haga lo mismo y aplique también esta información de modo mas específico, a fin de generar un cambio -con éxito – en la manera de hacer las cosas. Después de todo, “cambio” parece ser la palabra clave para salir adelante en este contexto de crisis.
 

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Archivado bajo Branding, Estrategia, Marketing Político, Notas de Australinos, PR

Plan para una campaña de Social Media

No es el plan de comunicacion…. pero bien puede un Social Media Plan cotizar en la bolsa australina tambien! Les copio nota y video (sugiero verlo) que levanté de Interactividad.org.

Para esta semana, el album Sound of Silver, de LCD Soundsystem. Bienvenido junio!

miércoles 20 de mayo de 2009

¿Cómo desarrollar un Social Media Plan? (Iniciador Barcelona)

Ayer tuve la suerte de ser el ponente invitado en Iniciador Barcelona (honor doble ya que ayer se celebraba el primer aniversario de este evento). El tema, “Social Media para emprendedores“. Mi objetivo era tratar de transmitir mi experiencia personal en la red, así como la de Cava&Twitts durante los últimos meses, tratando de explicar lo que me ha funcionado y lo que no con el uso de los Social Media. No era doctrina, no era una tesis doctoral… era mi experiencia.

Y nada mejor que empezar preguntando… ¿Cuantos de vosotros tenéis blog? ¿Cuantos de vosotros tenéis Twitter? ¿cuantos de vosotros estáis en una red social?…. la inmensa mayoría contestaron que SI. La siguiente pregunta es ¿Cuantos tenéis un plan?… la gran mayoría no lo tenía.

El objetivo era constatar la importancia de seguir unos pasos, sencillos, pero necesarios para tratar de garantizar un resultado. Construir un Social Media Plan no garantiza el éxito, pero si evita cometer muchos errores. ¿que pasos seguir?

1. Definir objetivos : que quiero conseguir
2. Posicionamiento: ¿que dicen de mi? ¿como funciona mi sector en Internet?
3. Escuhar y hablar: definir que herramientas utilizar
4. Medir, medir, medir, medir (lo que no se puede medir no existe)

 
Os dejo la presentación de ayer (supongo que en breve colgarán el vídeo con toda la charla):

 
http://www.slideshare.net/marccortes/social-media-plan-iniciador?type=presentation 

 

De todo lo que hablamos si me gustaría repescar algunas cosas que se comentaron:

 

  • Para encontrar diamantes hay que picar mucho carbón“. Sólo con tener un blog, un twitter y estar en facebook no te garantiza nada, hay que entender tu entorno, tener claros los objetivos… Sobre este tema se cuestionó cuanto tiempo dedicar a cada cosa: la respuesta se irá modulando, al principio seguirás a muchos blogs o participarás mucho en las redes sociales y poco a poco se irá encontrando el punto de equilibrio. Cada uno tiene su propio equilibrio.
  • Internet y los Social Media son muy potentes, pero no hay que olvidar que una parte importante de la población no está todavía en la red o, si lo están, no participan de forma activa.
  • En los Social Media hay el mismo SPAM que por correo electrónico. Discutimos si es o no legitimo usar los social media para generar notoriedad y atraer tráfico (como cuando un “amigo” de facebook te invita 10 veces a que te hagas fan de un determinado grupo)… opiniones encontradas como siempre. Para el que envía un millón de correos vendiendo Viagra para que 2 lo compren, seguro que les es rentable pero ¿que imagen dejas a los otros 999.998?
  • Para todos hay un ecosistema en Internet, lo importante es encontrarlo. El que venda ropa para perros… tiene su espacio para encontrar a su público objetivo, la comunidad Unitteddogs tiene más de 44.000 perros dados de alta.

Seré un romántico, pero sigo pensando que hacer las cosas paso a paso garantiza un éxito a medio y largo plazo, aunque a corto no sepas ver los resultados.

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Claves para vender tu servicio y conseguir una reunión

Getting in the Door: The Key to Convincing Decision Makers You’re Worthy of a Conversation
 
By Jill Konrath, Contributing Editor
RainToday.com
 

Don’t get me wrong! I love being a consultative seller. It’s literally a part of my sales DNA. But a few years ago, I discovered that “being consultative” didn’t convince decision makers that it was worth their valuable time to meet with me.
To show you what I mean, let me take you into their world and put you center stage as the designated future client.

* * *

You’re busy working at your desk—and have been since 7 a.m. this morning. The phone rings. You glance at the clock and see that it’s 2:57 p.m. You can’t believe that it’s so late already. Your “to do” list is longer now than it was when you started.
But you’re expecting a very important call at the top of the hour so, without even a glance at the originating number, you pick it up.
“Hello,” you say.
“Pat,” the voice on the other end of the phone answers. “This is Terry. I’m the account executive from Global Solutions. I’m glad to finally catch you in. Do you have a few minutes?”
You shudder. You’d have never answered the phone if you thought you’d end up talking to a salesperson. “I’m expecting a call at 3 p.m.” you reply tersely, hoping to shake yourself free from this unexpected interruption.
“Not to worry,” says the voice. “I’ll be brief. As I said, I’m from Global Solutions. We specialize in state-of-the-art services to help companies like yours with all your solution needs. I’d like to set up a time to meet with you to find out how you’re handling your needs in this area—and share with you how Global might be able to help you out. I’m wondering how your schedule looks next Thursday?”
“You’ve got to kidding!” you blurt out. “You expect me to take my precious time to meet with you and tell you how we’re doing things here? I’ve been slaving at my desk since bright and early this morning without even a break for lunch.
“Yet you have the audacity to request a meeting with me when you can’t even give me a valid business reason for doing so?”
The voice jumps in, “Pat, I would never assume to know your needs. Every business is different. And I couldn’t possibly recommend anything without learning more about your goals this year and how you’re currently handling things.
“Plus, I’d like to understand the problems you’re facing, as well as their impact on your organization. It would be presumptuous of me to assume.”
“And,” you butt in, “You’d don’t think it’s presumptuous to request a meeting with me when you haven’t even taken time to learn about my company. Sorry, that just doesn’t work with me. If I meet with you, you better bring something to the table.”
The voice on the other end stammers, “I would never want to assume anything.”
“You just don’t get it!” you say emphatically as you slam down the phone, disgusted with another so-called ‘consultative salesperson.’ As far as you’re concerned, all they’re doing is wasting your valuable time without offering anything in return.

* * *

What just happened here? It’s the end of a consultative sales era as we know it. Prospective clients simply don’t have time for it today.
Instead, they need you to be assumptive! That’s right. You need to assume—even though you were trained that to do so was to make an ASS-out-of-U-and-ME.
In short, you need to demonstrate expertise right up front in order to earn the right to be consultative.
So how should you approach a prospective customer? How about something like this:

“Pat. Terry from Global Sales. I know how much the economy is having an impact on manufacturing companies like yours. What we’ve found is that way too many organizations are paying way too much on their software licenses.
“We’ve been able to trim their expenses by up to 22.7% in the first year. If you’re like other CFOs, you’re looking for dollars everywhere in your budget. Let’s set up a time to see how we can cut your costs in this area. Sound good?”

Feels completely different, right? You’ll get appointments—not brush-offs—when you start assuming.
To be effective in today’s crazy business environment, you need to be assumptive to demonstrate your value. Yes, you have to spend time doing research up front. Yes, you need to craft a personalized message.
But that’s what it takes to get in the door. And after that, you can put your consultative sales skills to good use.


Jill Konrath is a Contributing Editor for RainToday.com and is a recognized expert in complex sales strategies and creating business value for B2B sales organizations. She is also founder of SellingtoBigCompanies – a web resource that helps professional services providers, consultants and salespeople win big contracts in the corporate market. E-mail Jill at jill@sellingtobigcompanies.com.

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5 Estrategias esenciales para ir con propuesta y volver con cliente

Hace mucho, tiempo atrás (creo que recién nacía Australinos y eramos apenas 15…), hubo una discusión sobre qué poner y dejar de poner en una carta de presentación. Situación/contexto: vos con tu carpertita, tu mejor remera y tu cara de profesional, dispuesto a ganarte un nuevo cliente.
De haberme encontrado con la nota que les paso hoy, la hubiera enviado como respuesta. Nunca es tarde cuando la dicha es buena dicen. Que la lectura de estas líneas traiga dicha de nuevos clientes a unos; y a otros, bueno, nos conformamos con reducir en un 20% las visitas de los carpetita boys, asi como esos tan eternos llamados de 15 minutos (que en mi caso, suelo poner en alta voz para seguir con mi trabajo y contestar -en el silencio del minuto 15- “no tengo plata” o “pasame la propuesta por mail, gracias, adios!”).

Espero que les sirva…
Five essential strategies for highly effective initial meetings
(Jill Konrath)

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