November 29th, 2016 by Bob Bly
Are rich people who spend a lot of money with you often prima
donnas who are demanding and impossible to please?
From what I’ve seen, this is sometimes true in the world of
consumer marketing, whether at a luxury resort, 5-star gourmet
restaurant, or exclusive London men’s shop selling bespoke suits.
But in business, I have found quite the opposite to be true —
the more money a client spends with you, the more respectful,
polite, and easy to work with they will be … because the more
they value you.
The converse is also true: the client who talks you down in
price and gets you cheap turns out to be the most difficult,
demanding, hard to deal with, and impossible to please.
My theory as to why this should be so is as follows….
If the client with deep pockets is an entrepreneur, part of his
success is that he takes pains to treat people fairly and with
respect, so they in turn will like him and give him their best
And if your client is with a big corporation with deep pockets,
then he is usually a full-time professional marketer, and he
knows how to deal with vendors in our field — and has the budget
to afford them without undue hardship.
On the other hand, some entrepreneurs with shallow pockets often
haggle over your price, not because they are jerks, but because
they are on shoestring budgets.
They also question what you do at every step. Not because they
want to be picky or difficult.
But because they desperately need their marketing campaign to
work, inexperienced clients may find it difficult to let go of their
own judgment in favor of an expert’s, like yours.
Therefore, the well-heeled clients with big budgets who pay
generous fees are so often the easiest and most cooperative to
work with … while the tiny accounts who have to watch every penny
can sometimes be difficult, demanding, and contentious.
Are there exceptions to all this? Of course. I write copy for a
number of small businesses whose owners I am incredibly fond of.
But overall, the generalizations I just made turn out to be true
more often than they are wrong.
Do you find they hold true in your business as well as mine?