Selling Too Cheap

Creatives working as writers and artisans face the common difficulty of determining a fair price for their efforts.

Deep down most creatives feel their work is priceless. It is something they created from their own thoughts and visions and constructed with their own hands. Priceless is just that. But, without a price, we can’t sell our work and pay for our studios, workrooms and dinner.

Other creatives don’t value their efforts and often settle for not much more than the cost of their supplies when selling their pieces. It’s this group, that I want to talk to…

Consider a conversation going on today on one of the forums I visit. A writer was stiffed by someone else claiming to be a writer who was reselling her work to a client.

I see this sort of thing in both the handicraft and writing worlds. Creatives who are offering the fruits of their labors so cheaply that others can resell the pieces as their own and even turn a profit. I not talking about a wholesaling situation, I’m talking about the age old concept of “buy low, sell high”.

A well-written article can sell for several hundred dollars. Yet, there are many writers selling their work for less than $5. It stands to reason that enterprising folks would take advantage of such uninformed bargain pricing and create an almost cottage industry in reselling the work of others.

The same holds true for handmade items. We’ve all been to craft fairs and shows where at least one person is trying to sell ready-made items from Fire Mountain Gems or even Oriental Trading and claiming they made it themselves. Table fillers are one thing but claiming that they made these items themselves, at least in my opinion, is fraud.

I’ve also seen where one table holder purchases something way under-priced from another crafter, remove the original price tag, replace it with one of their own and add the now higher-priced item to their own table. While the first crafter may be happy they made a sale, shouldn’t they be the one earning the rewards of a fair price?

A slightly different variation was the crafter who virtually bought out an under-priced competitor to protect her own higher and more accurate prices.

Undervaluing your work and selling too cheap allows folks who have done their homework and understand the true value of your efforts to profit at your expense. Be smart, learn what you are worth and enjoy the fruits of your labor rather than letting some shiester profit at your expense.

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