If sending rates over to a prospect – a potential client or customer – makes you nervous or a little shaky or scary, you’re not alone. The thought alone can be intimidating, even though we know this is a necessary part of the process to do our work. 

We got you. 

We asked #blkcreatives team member Torrence Simmons why we sometimes, as Black creatives and business owners, get so shaky when it comes to sending over rates or quoting our prices and what’s the first step in shutting that down.


The reason why we sometimes as Black creatives and business owners fear sending over rates or quoting prices is because first, we don’t want to lose business. We’re so afraid of hearing no that we’re like ‘is this going to be too high?’. The second thing is based on our community and for many people their upbringing, wealth is looked at as a negative thing.

What I mean by that is that you’ll hear many people misquote the Bible and they’ll say “the love of money is the root of all evil” which is not true. Or they see so many prosperity pastors preaching and you see so many hustlers and scammers trying to accumulate riches by screwing people over and so don’t want to be seen as that. 

How do we stop that from happening?

First, it’s in the research. Research your competition, or your competitors, or your peers in your space. The reason why I break it down as competition, competitors or peers in the space, is that I believe you should compete with yourself but serve the market. If the market’s price for a widget is $100 you don’t need to come in at $20 because you’re not serving the market. You can come in at $90, $80 maybe but coming in at $20 doesn’t serve the market. Once you figure out the research, you can say your price is based on industry standard. 

Now the next thing you do is say ‘why am I in business’? List it out – ‘I’m in business for x and y and z’. If you have at least three things why you’re in business, most likely one of those three if not all three are gonna require money. Money is not the reason why we are in business or it shouldn’t be the reason why we’re in business. The reason is to serve but in order to serve there HAS to be a financial transaction.

Once we understand that, we can start shutting those [scary feelings] down. 

Now I know we want to be the cheapest so we can get the most business but the issue with trying to get the most business is: are we truly serving the right people? 

There’s a level for everybody. 

There’s a reason why Walmart, Dollar General, Family Dollar and Target all exist in the same space: they’re different clientele in all four facets. So your Dollar General/Family Dollar that serves a different market from what Walmart serves, which is different from what Target serves. So if we understand who our target is, then sending over those rates and those quotes makes more sense as well. Because we know who we’re serving, this rate is on par for who we serve in our industry.

"There's a level for everybody." via #blkcreatives Click To Tweet

I think if we start breaking things down by why are we in business, who are we serving and who is the industry standard, those are three ways to shut down that fear and shakiness that comes with sending over rates.

Also understand potentially there is a F-bomb going to be dropped in sending over the rates, which is fair. And fair is one of those F-bombs as I describe as emotional gut punches – Chris Voss said it best. When ‘fair’ is dropped, now we’re on the defense of trying to defend our prices and we get tired of doing that. 

If somebody’s not willing to pay your rate after you’ve done the research to see what’s the industry standard, you know the market that you’re serving and you understand your why, do you really wanna work with them? No matter how big they are, no matter how small they are, do you wanna work with them? After you’ve done your due diligence – you didn’t just pull a number out of your behind – but after you’ve done your due diligence? 

Walk away. No deal is better than a bad deal. So once you understand those three things, that should help you start shutting that fear down and understand that somebody out there sees the value. 

"If somebody’s not willing to pay your rate after you've done the research to see what’s the industry standard, you know the market that you’re serving and you understand your why, do you really wanna work with them?" #blkcreatives Click To Tweet

Torrence Simmons is a fun loving, hard working husband, and father, a business coach and entrepreneur who is looking to change the world one business mind at a time.