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New Pricing Structure Based on Qaulity?

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by Trophy Specialist, Jan 30, 2009.

  1. Christie

    Christie Instructor, Consultant & Speaker

    Why would you waste your time and jeopardize your reputation advertising something that you technically do not offer?
  2. MattHCT

    MattHCT New Member

    Never! When you do a bargain mount and its looks medocer at best then its out there with your name on it. Customers who don't know you will think that's your best work. Your only cheating yourself, by only giving 100 percent to quality

  3. MattHCT

    MattHCT New Member

    Oops I ment less than 100 percent. LOL
  4. 25 years ago I offered a dry preserve price and a tanned price. I had 15 customers and all but one selected the higher priced head after hearing my sales pitch and looking at two pieces of deer leg skin -- one tanned, one dry preserved. The only guy that said I want the cheap one was a father whose 16 year old shot one bigger than the old man. I did the kids tanned but only charged the lower price. It wasn't the kid's fault the old man was an a**. So I think as a marketing tool the lower price may get people in the shop where you can upsell them to the better quality.
    Just my thoughts. Remember taxidermy is a business
  5. Bill Yox

    Bill Yox Well-Known Member

    We have done this topic in the past. I recall telling someone then, this story...You offer a high end mount at your normal price, and all is well. To help bring more in, you tier the type of mount. You add a more commercial or cost cutting effort, still decent work, but definitely not the work you normally put out. You THINK you made up the difference...until you start hearing guys looking at your lesser work, quoting your higher prices. They do that all the time, cuz they really do not know. Sorta like talking "Joe the body man" who is known for his good paint work, to simply "touch up" one of your vehicles, to save money. He thinks hes making a few extra. So, the next guy who sees the trash paint touch up says, yuck, who did THAT? To which, the customer replies simply, and without explanation..."Joe the body man". OUCH!

    I cant say enough, we cant force taxidermy to be something its not. Customers will find you, and you also have to get out and find them. I personally dont think at the rate we are losing jobs here in NY, that Mich is much better or worse. Plenty of guys do charters and write and do taxidermy and other things to supplement. Thats a lot of work, but people do pay. The better charter captains in my area have their best dates booked already, and are just filling in dates. Yet Kodak, or whats left of it, just announced 1300 more layoffs this week.

    Im with the others...Id find something else to do before Id EVER offer two rates/styles, or lower a price.
  6. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    If you read my last post I did not say I was going to advertise it.

    Here's how it will likely play out:

    Caller: How much do you charge to stuff a deer head?

    Me: $440 and where did you find out about me?

    Caller: Wow $440 is a lot of money. That's a lot more than Joe Blow quoted me.

    Me: Do you want a quality, lifelike looking mount that will last you the rest of your life? Or is price your only concern?

    Caller: Well, a, a, a, I want a quality mount but Joe Blow promised me that he is the best taxidermist in the area and he only charges $300.

    At this point I'm waisting my breath on any further attempts to try to sell him on quality. He knows nothing about taxidermy and will only go after the cheapest price he can find. The only way I'm ever going to make a sale on that one will be to get him into my studio so I can show him face to face the difference between a crappy mount and a quality mount. The only way I can think of to get him into my studio is to tell him what he wants to hear.

    Now a lot of you will just say something like "I don't want that kind of a customer anyway". That was my opinion in years past when I got so much business that I was turning people away. But now that the economy has taken a dump, I can no longer afford to be picky. I need to convert a higher proportion of calls into sales. Other taxidermists are slashing their rates like crazy around here and also offering coupon and discounts. There are also a lot more newbies getting into the business. Fewer customers with more taxidermists (competition) means that one can't just sit back and think that just because you put out good work that you will be able to achieve your business goals. Customers know that there is more competition and they are also being condition to only shop sales and to bargain on services including taxidermy. That trend is increasing big time here. In over 10 years, I have only lost one sale on people that I've gotten to come into my studio and that lost sale was my decision. Getting them here is the tough part.

    I'm open to any suggestions on how to convert those price shopping calls into sales.
  7. Uncle Harley

    Uncle Harley New Member

    sounds like you have your mind set up so.................why do you need our approval? Do it, just don't bitch here when it blows up in your face it's that simple
  8. Christie

    Christie Instructor, Consultant & Speaker

    I understood that you were advertising it in your initial phone conversation with the price checker.

    I'm waiting to see how the rest of this conversation that you're having goes...
  9. Uncle Harley

    Uncle Harley New Member

    now that I spanked your pp let me tell you how I would do it and what works for me.

    Caller: Hi how much do you charge

    Me If you are looking for the cheapest guy in town I'll save ya some trouble here is his # but if you want a quality mount for not much more I'd sugest you go look at his deer and then come look at mine and I will show you the difference in quality and why my higher price is justified. And just to make things easy I only require 1/3 down on deer heads and you can make payments on the rest if you like. Right now I'm running a 6-9 month turn around time so that should give you plenty of time to scrape up the rest. So, far, Every one I have ever gave this speil to came in. They may have not left it because to them there wasn't that much of a difference vs price and those are the ones I don't want anyways.
  10. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    I wasn't really looking for anyone's approval. I was a lot more interested in people with experience with this type of sales idea. It looks there were a couple people that did actually try it (thanks). Everyone else offered advise and opinions, which is fine and appreciated, but not nearly as valuable as someone that actaully tried it.
  11. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    Thanks for that information it was helpful.
  12. MattHCT

    MattHCT New Member

    So the opinions weren't to helpful because those who gave opinions didn't actually try whoring their work? Ever think that maybe there's a little pearl in those opinions?
  13. chongo

    chongo Member

    Perhaps you are risking the loss of some rich clients- the ones who come back year to year and are pretty low maintenance once they are convinced of your quality of work. The kind who spend the money regardless of the state of the economy, and who say to their rich buddies, "Sure, I still have that 10K lease, and I take my deer to that 600 dollar taxidermist- because I know I am going to get quality and don't have to worry about it." Now, the REAL reason for him saying that may be just to say that he can afford it to his envious friends. Or like Governor Spitzer saying that he can afford a lady for 5K a night, to his wannabe friends who can only afford one for 250 dollars. The price implies quality (though it may not be) and the rich dude gets to show off. Why risk confusing the public about your quality of work?
  14. MattHCT

    MattHCT New Member

    How does a person who's trained themselves to do quality work retrain themselves to cut corners. Maybe I have OCD but I'm way to picky and pride myself as being meticulous to cut corners to save a few bucks and sacrifice quality. JMO
  15. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    If you read my last post you will see that I said that I apreacieated all advise and opinions. Some posts were just more helpful than others. No need to get insulting.
  16. MattHCT

    MattHCT New Member

    No insult intended. Don't be so sensative. :)
  17. I really don't understand how this works. A quality mount has very little to do with the materials you use. It's the artist that makes the mount, not the materials. A high quality mount can be produced using bondo ears and a DP'ed hide. You can try to cut some work and price by leaving out a septum and nicitating membrane and using a low quality eye, I guess. But I think by the time you get done mounting a head, you'll find that you are saving very little time and very little money. If you offer a big discount for this type of mount, you're just losing money.
  18. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    I could trim off about half the time I spend on a mount along with at least $100 in dirrect costs by cutting every corner.
  19. I'd like to see the breakdown of it. I don't see how it's possible if you are still trying to put out a decent product. If you're just trying to put junk together, then I guess it's possible.
    You can save some money in tanning, but the hide prep will take just as long, if not longer when using DP if you do it right. For bondo, I use NAPA Fibre Hair and the last gallon I bought cost around $60. I prefer this method, but I don't see it as a money or time saver. I just like the method.
    There's nothing I can think of that would significantly cut down the cost or time it takes me to mount and animal and still produce something a decent product. The difference between quality materials and lesser materials seems more nickel and dime to me, along with the small details of a quality mount.
  20. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    I've never done a DP deer head before, but I'm assuming that you just turn the ears, lips, nose, then flesh and apply the DP and its ready to mount. That hide prep would take me no longer than one hour. I now have to turn, flesh, salt dry then eithor send it out for $X or tan it in house which involves hours of labor along with other costs. Then after tanning, you have to do more time consuming hide prep especially on the ears, nose and eyes. One guy close to me that does DP jobs does not use hide paste (I've tore them apart) so that would save time and money. His total time he spends on a deer head is less than 4 hours. There are cheap eyes you can buy along with cheap forms. I buy some of the most expensive forms and eyes you can buy. Ear liners cost would be saved. I have a galon of bondo on hand. To save more time and money, I could ommit interior nose detail, not mess so much with the lip line, forget about nose-pad texture, and just paint it with a brush to finish it. When you consider tanning costs, I could cut out well over $100 and spend a lot less time on a mount. It certainly would not look nearly as good as what I now produce, but then again a lot of people producing that kind of work still get repeat business so who am I to judge.