Bud’get’ vs Bud’give’

Wed 24 May 2017 - posted by Laura Wiles

We’ve been talking about your brief for 2 hours, I’m clued up on what your objectives are, and I’m already brimming with ideas. I’ve got a pretty good estimate in my head of the work involved, but I’m silently willing you to volunteer the last piece of information before I have no choice but to ask...

“What budget have you got in mind?”

Just those words give me flash backs of cringe moments; it sounds cheeky, it comes across as petty, and what’s more, it encourages you to percieve me as a money grabbing sales drone who puts the ‘account’ in Account Manager and only values you by your commercial worth to my target.

*…and breathe*

Point being, if you only knew the deliberation I go through when I get back to the office with this awesome brief that we’ve spent time fleshing out and getting excited about, you would appreciate the requirement for a firm idea of a budget. I want to give you the best solution your money can buy, and by telling me the budget and resource you’ve allocated, you help me to work out how important this project is to your business and therefore what to recommend and specify as the solution.

A budget helps me to hit the mark first time, not only will the proposal be on budget, it will also be the most suitable specification for that budget. I’ll be the first person to tell you if I think you need to allocate a bit more for a better quality solution, but I’ll also delight in telling you that I can do what you want, with a bit extra, for half the money.

For me, the single most dreaded response from a client is, “How much?!” and that’s usually because I’ve specified you an Aston Martin and quite rightly so, because I want to show you we can do amazing (shiny) things. If you only have Ford budget, that’s fine, I can still work with that, you just need to tell me. The last thing I want to do is embarrass either of us and potentially damage our relationship.  

You may be thinking, “Well we don’t know how much a full ecommerce bespoke website costs, so how can we give you a budget?” This is also perfectly acceptable; just communicate this so I can prepare you some good old fashioned, bronze, silver and gold level solutions, or even a phased approach.   

In summary, I’m not going to quote right up to your budget limit just because you told me what it is, but even an indication or ranged figure will allow me to prepare a proposal that is accurate to your requirements.

No cringe, just great communication!

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