By MaryLee Herrmann

In preparation for writing this article and deciding how to frame it, I was watching Marketing Monday’s “How to Set the Right Price for ALL Your Units,” with Steve Moran and Alex Smith (of Further’s Pricing Assistant — a Foresight partner).

Unfortunately, the guests proceeded to hijack the conversation.

Okay, not really. Steve and Alex had technical difficulties. But their guests were more than able to carry on with what was nothing short of a masterclass in the most effective ways to develop and communicate your pricing. And all in only half an hour.

It’s no wonder. Check out the guests:

  • Christy Cunningham, Vitality Living
  • Sherrie Harder Bebell, Columbia Pacific Advisors
  • Libby Lauer, Senior Source Consulting Group

Here’s the problem: I don’t know what to focus this article on. Every time I decided on one topic, somebody else said something brilliant.

So here are a couple of article topics. Take your pick. Better yet: Go watch the show right now, and get the whole masterclass yourself.

Article 1: Think Value, Not Just Price.

Steve asked Libby what’s the most common thing communities do wrong. Her reply:

The biggest thing that a community can do is to build in the value for whatever price they’re charging. I think so many teams are so fast to just talk about, “We do three meals a day; we do medication management,” and there’s not that conveyance of why that’s important.

Instead, when you’re with a prospect, listen, and then explain the value. She gives this example of what to say:

Because you said you’re worried about Mom not eating well every day, let me tell you about our dining program and how she can come down three times a day and have meals and not have to go grocery shopping and not have to worry — and you don’t have to worry.


Article 2: Think Science and Art.

Enter Sherrie and an interesting point regarding who should be doing what:

[Sales leaders are] so strapped for time and responsibilities and trying to get those move-ins, but yet we’re still expecting competitive analyses to be done by our sales leaders in our communities. That’s not the best time spent. I think it’s our job as owners —  corporate, regional, divisional — it’s our job to make sure that we pull that data together and we understand it and we educate them, at the community level.

Marry right pricing with good communicators, and you have the perfect formula. From Christy:

As an industry, we need to recognize that pricing and building a value proposition is a science, not a communications strategy. … And then let the communications piece be the cherry on top. Go find the right talent that can help you illuminate that even more.

You can’t have one without the other. The best pricing won’t be effective if the story isn’t communicated well. And having a good salesperson isn’t going to do much when the value proposition isn’t there.

Game Not Over

This is only some of the insight provided.

As Alex said, this is “an all-star group of people. If you could have these people in one company, it’d be game over.” And he is right. Though they might not share a company, they do share an amazing passion for creating effective pricing.

Christy told Alex:

This whole topic, and the idea of pricing as a science … really does take an innovation in technology. And I want to compliment you on the way that you’re breaking some ground in that respect, in what you’re bringing to market with the Further Pricing Assistant.

The Pricing Assistant brings the science and saves you — and your sales leaders — time and headaches. Check it out here.

And don’t miss the senior living pricing masterclass! If you’ve already watched: What were your favorite parts?