What would you charge for a meditation course? That was the question one participant of the Power and Play Retreat was pondering. I wanted to do some impromptu market research over lunch, so I asked three of the participants to guess the cost of a three-week meditation course that included one-on-one time with the instructor, group sessions, and a supported home practice. Go ahead and come up with that number for yourself before you read more… Got a number in your head? Here’s what the 3 participants said: $149, $197, and $400. That’s quite a mind shift for the meditation teacher since she was debating a range between $50-$80! Setting a price depends on at least three vital factors: 1.Your costs (and yes, that includes paying yourself!!) 2.The value your service or product brings to your customer (from their perspective, not yours) 3.Your customer’s ability to pay The three people I asked for feedback were professional women – a CEO, a director, and a business owner. They valued the training, had the ability to pay, and based their sense of costs on other workshops they had attended. I’d say they would be the perfect target audience for this meditation teacher. If your price exceeds your customer’s ability to pay, you lose . Because no matter how valuable your audience finds your service or product they won’t buy it because they can’t. Go back to the drawing board and come up with a low-cost version or find a new audience. If your audience has the ability to pay, but doesn’t buy, you’ve missed the mark on value. Here’s an example of value. I’ve personally paid Leslie Nolen (president of The Radial Group) $185 an hour for her expertise. And Segovia Smith, the technical wizard behind YogaHub, gets even more per hour. Why do I pay that fee? Because I value the expertise and I know when I need it. It’s a necessary investment for my business, not a discretionary cost. Both Leslie and Segovia are speaking at YogaHub’s virtual conference . Leslie’s teaching a do-it-yourself, step-by-step marketing system. Segovia’s teaching how to create products via virtual workshops. From my value perspective, just those two workshops would be enough to justify the whole conference cost of $297. A full five days costs less than just two hours of consulting time. Plus, new products and new clients will add to the bottom line, creating a return on the conference investment. Now it’s your turn. When you look at a conference cost of $297, what value do you place on it? Why is it of value (or not) to participate? If conferences aren’t your thing, what do you spend that amount of money on in your business, and does the value exceed the cost in the long run? Go through this mental exercise. Because these are the same questions your customers ask themselves when they look at your products and services: Is it of value to me? Is it worth buying?