In past seasons on HBO's Six Feet Under, the Fishers were often battling a funeral home conglomerate looking to take over the family-run business. The big company could afford employee perks and lower customer prices and had plenty of cash to buy out the smaller fish in town. After several battles, the Fishers are about to give in… when the conglomerate files for bankruptcy.

In this case, the Fishers won. But competing with the big guns is never easy, especially when the mom-and-pop shop isn't a known entity. But there are small companies that like the Fishers are winning the battle. And, frequently, price isn't the only battlefield.

This week: How can a lesser-known, small company overcome the pricing battle? Don't let your problem bring you one step closer to the grave; instead, write to 100,000 “MarketingProfs Today” readers who can help your business stay alive. You will receive a complimentary copy of our book, A Marketer's Guide to e-Newsletter Publishing.

This Week's Dilemma

The Competition Undercuts Our Small Firm

I am the marketing director of a consulting firm. We're not one of the big consulting houses. Before we approach potential clients, awareness of us is low. But we have a track record of getting very good results for our clients. The single biggest issue we face is pressure to cut our charges because clients “know a guy who'd do it at half that price.”

The reality is that going with someone simply based on price is much riskier for the client; but many can't seem to get their heads around paying our rates when they've never heard of us before, despite the case studies and references. With a small marketing budget, how can I help ensure our firm gets paid what we are worth?

—Marketing Director

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Hank Stroll ( is publisher at InternetVIZ, a custom publisher of 24 B2B e-newsletters reaching 490,000 business executives.