LinkedIn & Personal Branding Expert – CEO & Founder of Black Marketing – 1,000+ LinkedIn Recommendations, 4 Best Selling Books.
What’s the value of a service? It’s what people will pay for it. It’s what results it will bring. How do you judge the value of a business? Often, it’s by recommendations, case studies and experience (how many years the business has been in service). Good businesses tend to last longer than bad ones.
The value of a service is often seen by looking at what not doing it will mean for you and your business. If the outcome is greater in doing something, it’s worth investing in.
Employ a cheap lawyer, accountant or IT person and see what results they bring. You’ll soon find the value of someone you can trust and who knows what they’re doing is immense.
People are usually prepared to pay more for someone who has recommendations, credibility, a track record — someone who specializes in a particular area because that is what they have built a reputation, personal brand and business on. The value is their years of trying and failing to do things and learning from their mistakes. You are paying more for them because they have been through all of this so that you don’t have to.
There’s a value in that and, usually, it’s a premium.
You Get What You Pay For
I’m a massive believer in this. As a rule, you tend to get what you pay for. The best lawyers, CEOs, rock stars, DJs, movie stars and football stars are also the most expensive. Experience and expertise cost.
The same applies to LinkedIn. You can get a million LinkedIn trainers who are one-man bands but have never actually taken responsibility for managing a profile or creating a social selling and content marketing campaign. You can join a million LinkedIn courses, take part in online training and watch YouTube videos but, ultimately, you still have to manage your LinkedIn yourself.
So, you have to ask yourself, what is your time worth? Is your time better spent working on your clients rather than working on your LinkedIn? And, if so, who do you want to manage your profile? The cheapest or the most premium?
Ultimately, you choose to outsource because it saves you time. So, what’s that worth to you? The value you place on this will determine how much you’re willing to invest in outsourcing it and then deciding what level of investment you wish to spend.
The other consideration around price is how people will judge you. Will they know that you have scrimped and cut corners, or will they know that you have chosen premium?
To Invest Or Not To Invest?
When it comes to any business service, the biggest question you have to ask yourself is what is the time saved not doing it yourself worth to you? You can take legal action to recover a debt, for example, and represent yourself, but if you spend your time doing that, who’s running your business?
There’s also the emotional investment question. How many diversions to you being CEO are you willing to allow in order to do something that you can outsource to someone better qualified? What’s that worth to you?
These days, you can learn to do anything from accounting to legal to SEO to logo design to research. The question is how much are you willing to invest in outsourcing these aspects of business in order to save time and allow you to focus on growing your company?
“Jack of all trades, master of none” is a great saying for a reason. People employ masters of their trade to do the things they don’t have time for or to enable them to focus on their core role — running their business.
If you’re a business owner looking to outsource, here are a few things to consider:
• Do you have the budget to outsource?
• How good of a job do you want to be done? (Quality is often dictated by price, so the more you pay the better the service.)
• Given the task at hand, how premium do you need to go?
Sometimes, if the task is straightforward, such as accounting, you don’t need to spend the most to get the job done. But when it comes to tasks like writing thought leadership content, you may need to spend more to find the best writers who can reflect your personal branding.
The old sayings about never being fired for choosing IBM or McKinsey still ring true. There brands can charge a premium because merely saying you work for them shows that you mean business. If that enhances your reputation and communicates serious intent, then it’s a price worth paying.
Often, the higher the price, the more you are committed to it as well. If you’ve spent very little, then you may not really care about the outcome as much as if you’re fully invested.