How to give
discounts to friends
Starting or running your own business is already hard enough. Many people don’t see that generosity as a virtue, and for many business owners, the inclination to offer discounts to friends and family is strong. But as with all things in business, it's essential to strike a balance. How do you extend this kindness without compromising the value perception of your business or its financial health? Let's break it down.
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Establish Clear Boundaries
When it comes to discounts, clarity is king. Laying out specific guidelines helps avoid confusion and potential misunderstandings. Do you offer a percentage off? A flat rate discount? Or perhaps a small gift on the side? By defining the boundaries upfront, both you and your loved ones know what to expect, making the entire process smoother.
Maintain Value Perception
While it's lovely to give, over-discounting can inadvertently undermine the perceived value of your products or services. Ensure that your friends and family understand the genuine worth of what you're offering. The special rate isn't a commentary on value but rather a nod to the unique bond you share.
This isn't about making things transactional but rather maximizing the opportunity. Think of these discounts as avenues to gather valuable feedback. Encourage your friends and family to write reviews or spread the word about your business. Their insights and word-of-mouth marketing could be golden!
Set Duration and Limits
Every gesture, even the most generous ones, may need boundaries. Maybe there's a specific month dedicated to these discounts or certain times when these offers are valid. For instance, some businesses find the slower months, like January, an excellent time for such incentives. The key is to create a system that benefits all parties involved.
Honesty fosters trust. If inquired, it's entirely fine to mention that you have special rates for close friends and family. However, if any part of this arrangement makes you uncomfortable, it's a cue to revisit and revise the terms.
Prioritize Business Health
Your business's financial well-being should always be paramount. Regularly assess the impact of these discounts on your overall profit margins. If a sizable portion of your clientele receives a discount, it might be time to re-evaluate your approach.
Acknowledge Emotional Factors
Business isn't just about numbers; it's deeply personal. Many entrepreneurs grapple with a sense of obligation when it comes to offering discounts to loved ones. It's crucial to remember that while generosity is commendable, it should never jeopardize your livelihood.
Ultimately, managing discounts for friends and family is about balancing business acumen with heartfelt generosity. After all, the best businesses thrive not just on profit but also on relationships and trust.
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