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To Black Friday or Not to Black Friday?

That is the question!

So many people feel that they have to offer something major over the coming days.

Black Friday is a nonsense that started to really gain ground online a few years ago. It started as a Black Friday deal then went to Black Friday and Cyber Monday and now seems to be Black Friday week (which is actually 10 days as many online offers kicked off last Friday and will stretch to a week on Monday).

In a time of financial hardship for many do we really need to jump on this bandwagon?

The answer is - it depends - firstly there is just so much "noise" around this time of year, it would have to be something super-bloody-exceptional to get noticed anyway.

If you are selling a product - maybe run with one or two loss leaders - that is what I used to do - not site wide sales for the main just a few really cheap deals.

Or hold your prices and offer something great (and it has to be good to be seen or heard across all the noise) as a bonus or extra. For example, I'd offer a reduced ID bracelet (one style per day) but on all orders over XX regardless of what they contained they could get a free second bracelet (not ID tag) or they could get a free dog tag and keyring, etc. It had to be something of value to the person or it's just a case of giving something away for nothing.

For service providers I'd say you don't have to do a BF deal. I always say I offer year round value and don't need to reduce my rates to jump on a band wagon.

If I do decide to do something then I normally offer a valuable extra. This year I've been debating offering a 45 minute copywriting session so review and spice up copy or a 60 minute breakthrough coaching call. But I've not decided one way or another yet.

I may well do a flash sale on the templates as that doesn't involve my time (which is my most valuable asset).

One thing I won't be doing is reducing my Designed in a Day price because I've realised two things with this:

1) when I reduce my prices people then see it as a red flag to undervalue me, my time and my services and I'm not prepared to ever put myself in that position again after this week and

2) my time and expertise are my most precious assets I really don't want to be giving them away!

So if you are drawn to take part in the lunacy of this week (and I have to say I am drawn, I mean who doesn't love a bargain?) then it is OK to be creative with your offers (especially when you can detach from the outcome - if it sells it sells and if it doesn't you've not lost anything). You don't have to sell your soul to the devil though, it is one week and there is so much noise about it is so hard to get heard and seen anyway. Focus on the other 51 weeks of the year that is more beneficial and if you put something out there then it needs to be something that doesn't devalue your business.

One final thought I worked for a business for a while that were well known for discounting and so they were never able to break that cycle of heavy discounts and offers because everyone was always waiting for the next offer to come live. The business was in the state where they had to bastardise their pricing constantly in order to hit sales targets and to this date upteen years later they still have the same business model.

Whatever you do, good luck with it and enjoy the crazy. Happy bargain hunting for those that do (I'm on the look out for a crazy deal on a lovely sideboard if anyone sees something, I don't like what I have so who knows the sideboard of my dreams may go for a song this week, I'm doing all the stalking already)!

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