Price vs Value


FMacRumours cover


So often the topic of “price” comes up when I’m speaking to business owners.

Our competitors have lower prices.

We can’t lower our prices anymore without losing money.

The market won’t support our pricing strategy.

I don’t buy it. And rock ‘n’ roll history is on my side.

Last week I saw Fleetwood Mac at the Rogers Centre in Vancouver, BC. The place was packed. Sold out. Just like the rest of the stops on this tour that reunites the epic Mac line-up that includes Christine MacVie.

My tickets weren’t great. They were good, but not great. We were eight rows up, at the side of the stage.

Each ticket was $225. So my wife and I paid $450 to see a band we had already seen a dozen or so times.

And there were plenty of people who paid that – and more – to experience Fleetwood Mac that night.

I could have seen another band that night in Vancouver for a fraction of that $225!

Hell, I could have been entertained by buskers in the park for pocket change.

But that night, 18,000 people chose to pay at least $100 a person to see Fleetwood Mac.

It was never about the price.

When the product is so unique, the price no longer matters.

When the service is so special, price isn’t an object.

When the heart craves something, the mind doesn’t care what price tag comes with it.

Fleetwood Mac gave 18,000 people the chance to relive memories, take part in a reunion, hear amazing music, and see a legendary band at their best. That was an experience well worth the money.

If you find yourself constantly fretting over your prices, you’ve got a bigger problem.

If price is the issue:

* You aren’t providing a service or product that is unique enough.

* You aren’t creating an experience for your customers.

* You aren’t appealing to your customer’s emotions.

Unless low prices is your defining characteristic (like Wal-Mart, the dollar store, Southwest Airlines, etc), stop worrying about price.

When price becomes an issue, think instead about the experience, value, and reward that you provide. Think about the emotional needs you satisfy in your customer. Think about the things that transcend price.

Price is a logical element to the purchasing process. It speaks to the left brain, where numbers are calculated and figures are analysed.

Value is an emotional element to the purchasing process. It speaks to the right brain, where hearts sing and skin gets goosebumps and lifelong memories are made.

If you base your business plan on value instead of price, you’ll have a much easier time building a brand that is rock solid against competition, economic recession, and consumer fads.

But it’s up to you. You can take my advice. Or you can “Go Your Own Way”…

PS – thanks “gay concert dude” for the amazing video of this song.


Fleetwood Mac 1,174 Comments

Don’t Be Afraid Of Your Brand

AC/DC has a new song out called “Play Ball”.

It’s a three-minute three-chord sing-along with a catchy guitar riff, thumping backbeat, and plenty of sexual innuendo.

Essentially, it is just like every other AC/DC song ever.

There are no songs in the AC/DC catalogue about the plight of starving children in the third world, the angst of a broken relationship, or the politics behind the war in the Middle East. After all, we have U2 for that.

AC/DC songs are about rockin’, rollin’, drinkin’, women, drivin’, singin’, partyin’, and shakin’.

You can criticize it if you want, but I think it’s genius.

AC/DC has outlasted disco, grunge, new wave, and hair bands precisely because they always deliver the same thing to their fans.

They never apologize for what they are.

Why do some brands apologize for their very essence?

KFC is testing a new concept restaurant in Toronto called “KFC Fresh“. They sell fresh hand-crafted sandwiches, grilled wraps, and chicken bowls, along with beer, in an “urban fast casual” environment. Picture Chipotle and Kentucky Fried Chicken colliding.



I think the concept is great. KFC should absolutely pursue it… under a different name.

But they should never, ever, ever call it KFC anything. Let alone KFC Fresh!

KFC is famous for fried chicken. It is inherently not very healthy. At all.

It is greasy. Hell, it’s finger licking freaking good.

So why apologize for it? 

Yes, we live in a more health conscious world than we did a few years ago. But we all love to indulge now and again. KFC should be proud. They have the chance to be like AC/DC… a wonderfully guilty pleasure! KFC should be telling me to indulge now and then with big bucket of greasy Colonel’s recipe fried chicken.

Instead, they apologize with KFC Fresh.

The very name suggests that the original “real thing” KFC isn’t fresh… that it is somehow lesser than KFC itself.

Great brands can evolve, change, and try new concepts. It happens all the time.

But wise brands never apologize for their very essence. They celebrate it.

If you want to build a brand that can rock for decades like AC/DC, order the marketing/branding book Brand Like a Rock Star with one-click right now.

AC/DC, KFC 208 Comments