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My Value Pricing Story

Kirk Bowman

In August 2009, I was the advocate for hourly billing (the irony) for a panel discussion on estimating and billing at the FileMaker Developer Conference. Another developer on the panel was an advocate for value pricing. He said:

If you bill by the hour, there is an artificial limit on your income.

My internal reaction was “Hell no!”

I spent the next 3 months studying value pricing. Then in November, I made a public commitment on the FileMaker Talk podcast to switch from hourly billing to value pricing with MightyData, my software company. Then I hired a value pricing consultant to help me make the switch.

My first value pricing proposal was for a custom healthcare application. After identifying the value that the project would create for the customer, I doubled the price I would normally have charged and won the business.

Within 12 months, I made the switch to value pricing with all my customers. Our revenue increased by 56% the first year. The next year, our revenue increased by 79%. And, I have never looked back.

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% Increase in First Year

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% Increase in Second Year

Highlights from My Journey

  • January 2010 – I discovered VeraSage Institute, an organization dedicated to promoting value pricing in professional services. Ed Kless, a Senior Fellow, became a mentor and friend for my journey.
  • February 2010 – I gave a standing room only presentation on value pricing at the PauseOnError Conference in Portland. Over fifty developers packed a hotel room to learn about value pricing.
  • June 2010 – The video of my session, Value Based Pricing, from the PauseOnError Conference was the first one released to the public. (I like to think it was because of the popularity and quality of the content!)
  • August 2010 – I had the privilege to attend the Firm of the Future seminar taught by Ron Baker and Ed Kless. I spent two days with 20 other business owners learning how to implement value pricing.
  • November 2010 – I learned that MightyData had been included in the appendix of Implementing Value Pricing by Ron Baker. We were recognized as a company who had switched to value pricing.
  • January 2011 – I was invited to attend the by-invitation only VeraSage Conference in Napa Valley. At the end of the conference I was appointed a Practicing Fellow at VeraSage.
  • June 2012 – I returned to the annual VeraSage Conference, this time in Las Vegas. I participated in two days of public and private workshops with the VeraSage Fellows and guests.
  • July 2013 – I joined the START Experience, a private Facebook group started by Jon Acuff. With the encouragement of the group, I cast a vision to launch a business to help professionals switch to value pricing.
  • September 2013 – After four years of practicing value pricing, I launched Art of Value to help other professionals create happy customers and make more money.