Why Isn’t Pricing More Valued in Companies?

A reader asked, “Why isn’t pricing more valued in companies?” What a fabulous question. Although I haven’t seen the research, my experience leads me to believe there are three reasons, all huge.

First, many companies don’t know the power of pricing. Alternatively, they don’t know that pricing can have a large positive impact on their profitability. They think they are doing a good job already. My opinion: companies without an executive-led pricing initiative are certainly leaving a ton of money on the table.

Second, executives may understand the power of pricing but don’t know how to tackle it. Face it, pricing is hard. Almost every department cares a lot. It’s the topic of internal arguments. Some departments think it’s too high; others think it’s too low. The systems aren’t in place to implement new pricing strategies. Very few executives are pricing experts. Executives will solve problems they know how to solve.

Third, pricing is risky. Why would a company with a profitable business risk it by dramatically changing its pricing? The thing is, pricing doesn’t have to be big dramatic changes. There are many tweaks that can be made to pricing strategy that can add to profitability. However, unless there is a program to find these tweaks, they will go undetected.

The suggestion is to find an executive willing to drive pricing initiatives. Of course, if a company is willing to do that, then they obviously value pricing. First, executives have to care.

Mark Stiving

Mark Stiving

Mark Stiving is an instructor at Pragmatic Institute with more than 20 years of experience in business startup, development, management, turnaround and sales and design engineering. He has helped companies create and implement new pricing strategies to capture more from the value they create, and has consulted with Cisco, Procter & Gamble, Grimes Aerospace, Rogers Corporation and many small businesses and entrepreneurial ventures. He has led pricing initiatives as director of pricing at Maxim Integrated and as a member of technical staff at National Semiconductor. Mark also has served as president of both Home Director Inc. and Destiny Networks Inc. and as an assistant professor of marketing at The Ohio State University. Mark also is the author of “Impact Pricing: Your Blueprint to Driving Profits” (Entrepreneur Press, 2011). He can be reached at mstiving@pragmaticmarketing.com.

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