DIY, DIWM, DIFM: What Can You Do?

If it’s painful watching another small business struggle as the economy rebounds. It’s torture if it’s yours.

Why won’t your customers buy from you when they are increasing their spending with others? When will they realize that imitating your value, products or services “in-house” is penny wise and pound foolish?

The economy may be recovering but not in the same way. Most of the buyers I’ve interviewed for my clients are buying again but with new criteria. Instead of reverting to their old ways they are pursuing total cost of any solution and if they believe they can do it themselves, they will. So instead of fighting against the tide, why not accommodate your buyers and get them to pay you for doing so?

Here are three ways:

  1. Provide a Do It Yourself (DIY) Option.
    Now, more than ever, there is segment of customers who have more time than money. They want to do all the work themselves. They want to accept all the burden of learning and doing by trial and error.

    QuickBooks Software is an excellent example of this. For less than $200 a business can keep its own accounting. What can you offer in your business that allows a customer to do it all?

    One suggestion: Offer an entry-level service or product. Let your customers adopt your product or service in its simplest form. Then you can graduate them to a more robust version where they will need your help.

  2. Offer a Do It With Me (DIWM) Option.
    If a customer really wants to do it themselves but can’t, they might be interested in your guidance as they produce your product or service. If you can teach someone to fish and feed themself, make it a money maker for you.

    One example is a Jo-Ann Fabrics sewing class. After purchasing a dress pattern, you can have a teacher guide you and your project, reducing errors on your road to success.

    One sign that your prospect may want the DIWM option is if they have an equal amount of money and time to invest in working with you. Don’t offer them your entry level DIY service here, but clearly one for those who are ready for slightly more. But save your advanced expertise for the next option.

  3. Always offer the DIFM (Do It For Me) Option.
    While DIFM is not as popular now as when credit was free-flowing, many businesses will once again realize that they should refocus on their Best and Highest Use® and leave everything else to experts. When customers realize that they have less time than money, they will outsource tasks to vendors whose clear value justifies spending the extra cash.

    An example of this would be how most firms still outsource all their transactional HR needs like payroll, drug testing and 401(K) reporting.

    Always keep this option open because as the economy improves there will be buyers that have more opportunities to outsource work sooner than others.

So here are your three ways to help your customers to spend money with you:

  • DIY (Do it Yourself)
  • DIWM (Do it With Me)
  • DIFM (Do it For Me)

While, it will always be tough to run or watch a business lagging behind in profitable growth, now you have one more tool to offer to a prospect who respects your value.

So when are you going to start DIY, DIWM or DIFM in your business?


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Birol Growth Consulting, LLC
 941 Penn Ave, Suite 201, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
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