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How to Separate Tire Kickers From Buyers


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A “tire kicker” is someone who comes to the car dealership asking the salesperson a battery of questions with no intention of buying. Indeed, there are “tire kickers” here on Fiverr who can waste plenty of a Seller’s time. But before you throw the baby out with the bath water you may want to try asking them one or all of the following questions:

  1. What is your time frame for your project?
  2. What is your budget for the project?
  3. What BENEFIT do you expect from your project? Not to be confused with what they expect from you.

By qualifying your Buyer you’re establishing yourself as an experienced professional who can help them achieve their goals. True Buyers will be grateful to have found you and “tire kickers” will evaporate into cyberspace. Naturally, you may want to tailor your qualifying questions to suit your Gig.

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Do not ask them what their budget is. Tell them what you will charge for it.

What legitimate purpose is there in this site for asking someone what their budget is unless it is to see how much you can get away with asking them to pay? This is not what you want them to see you doing. Set a price. Tell them the price.

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Well, all of the points I covered in the post were taken from an article in the respected business magazine, “Forbes”, regarding how to handle “tire kickers” I happen to agree with Forbes. By asking those questions you will either close the deal or end a lengthy negotiation that was going nowhere. Remember, we are talking about dealing with tire kickers and not to be confused with customers making general inquiries.

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That’s the way I understood it too. The only reason I’d bring up budget is if someone sent a message saying “How fast do can you do gig for. Send samples.” Bad English and bad tact are easily run off by getting down to business. If someone contacts me and would like to know how a gig works for a first timer and uses passable English, I will chit chat with them all day.

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It’s okay to ask for a budget. For the same reason I get asked that question all the time when producing, what’s your budget to produce this film or that commercial, its a very common question in some industries, that way you know what resources you can pull
together and create something they would like. Some people have the talent and resources to produce something that looks exactly the same as the higher priced case study but at a lower rate.

If a customer wants a bunch of b-roll stock footage or some stock pictures included in as part of the web video I produce for them, and you know the cost of these such pictures and licenses, and the time you are going to take to work on these projects, you can have a rough estimate of how much its going to cost, lets say $150 dollars, if the buyer says he only has $50 dollars, then you have to find an alternative way to get those types of pictures or stock clips either at a free stock footage site and let them know the quality will suffer because the clips are of lesser quality to get what they want at the price they can afford or tell them that they can’t get what they want because the starting price for the stock pictures or clips they are using is set at at least 80 dollars… or whatever which doesn’t include MY time or payment so they are looking at something unrealistic, its part of my process on Fiverr and as a professional producer.

There is nothing wrong with asking for a budget depending on your industry. People in Hollywood get asked that question ALL the time.

I ask for budgets 75% of the time, I also tell them I’m not going to blindly bid on a project in which I don’t know the exact details. Did that in the beginning but I know better now!

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Regarding Forbes article, great tips when live consulting with a business decision maker; however, there is a difference between a 1:1 consulting gig talking to an executive decision maker and someone trying to buy a focused tactical deliverable on fiverr. Professionals want to spend least time to get job done and move on. Question 1 is reasonable. Other questions might be better once you work with one another successfully on tactical deliverable.

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I don’t know how this thread drifted so far from the concept described in the original post. The advice pertains to separating a “tire kicker” from a salvageable customer and not a tactic for customer negotiations in general. Although, some may choose to use for that purpose.

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Never discuss price until value has been established. This is basic sales 101. If you’re trying to get rid of a potential buyer who you think is wasting your time, then name your price and in as many words tell them to pay up or shut up. But if you want to up-sell the buyer and get him or her to spend more than they were originally intending, then you have to get the buyer to understand how he or she will benefit from choosing you to provide the service or complete the work. You also need to show the buyer different buying levels, and use the cheapest option to up-sell the more expensive options. Ever wonder why luxury car salesmen keep the equivalent of a tricycle on the lot? It’s to make the buyer see the value in the more expensive options and want to spend more than they had originally intended.

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