Dean Loh & Associates and Bionic Creative have worked closely for many a project. Recently, Dean brought up several pointers about one of our common encounters.

Over the years, we’ve met many different kinds of prospects and clients. Some appreciate our skill and expertise and are happy to pay our asking fee because they know it will be worth every cent. Some like to haggle and drive a hard bargain, asking for discounts and pushing for a better price (somewhat akin to flea markets).

We usually have to stand our ground when the prospects demand “Why can’t you give me a discount?”

You’ll find that product-based businesses can afford to give you bulk discounts because they can apply the economy of scale. Products can be multiplied. Time can’t.

We are operating a service-based business so our time is our most valuable asset, next to our design expertise. Every hour spent is an hour of cost to us. It doesn’t matter if you hire us for a few services. Every little bit of work requires our time and attention.

Don’t get us wrong. We do welcome negotiation, as in “What can you offer for X dollars; can we work around that?” as opposed to haggling – “I want everything but give me a discount, cut it to $_____ (enter ridiculously low amount here)…I promise to give you more work in future.”

We understand that people will always be on the lookout for a bargain, but let’s be realistic here. To slash our rates for a project is effectively making a loss and spoiling the market. We could well be taking on some other project that pays our full fee.

So folks, take a look at our work, and give us a holler if you are serious about your business and using good design as a leverage against your competitors.