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Pricing Careers Weekly > 3/19/18

Pricing Careers Weekly is a collection of pricing jobs, resources, thought leadership, news and professional development events for pricing professionals.

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Strategic Pricing Solutions, LLC (SPS) is a management consulting firm helping clients with pricing strategies, data analytics, and pricing processes. SPS was formed by Scott Francis in 2005 with a vision of enabling B2B clients to build sustainable strategic pricing capability to significantly improve their profitability. By providing flexibility in how we serve our customers, SPS consulting enables clients to build sustainable strategic pricing capability and continuous improvement in profitability through better pricing decisions.

Click a link below to learn more…


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Seniority: Mid-Senior level

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Webcast: Pricing Strategy Execution With Certainty 20-March | PPS and Navdeep Sodhi

Date: March 20, 2018

Time: 10:00 am Eastern

Changes in the external environment are inevitable. Companies react by rushing into strategic initiatives to defend revenues or grow profits only to realize that pricing execution is a bottleneck. Whether entering new markets — digital or traditional, major recalls, mergers or acquisitions, large-scale reorganization, or breakthrough technology, companies need be ready for unexpected pricing challenges. Rather than yield price control, companies should inspect and validate their pricing operations prior to launching any major initiative.

We will discuss how price and profit are dependent not only on external causes but also on the company’s internal operations and readiness for any eventuality. We will discuss a step-wise approach AARTI TM to help prepare your pricing operations for successful deployment.

Attendees will learn how to:

  • Assess challenges and perception gaps
  • Analyze the source and size of challenges
  • Recommend a prioritized plan to improve trust and speed to value capture
  • Train key stakeholders to understand shared objectives as well as their own roles and responsibilities to…
  • …Implement with certainty.



Workshop: Value-Based Pricing and Differential Value Quantification | Stephan M. Liozu, CPP

Date: Tue, 1 May, 2018 | 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Location: PPS Spring Conference | Loews Chicago O’Hare Rosemont Hotel in Chicago, IL

More firms and their pricing leaders are embarking on value-based pricing strategies every year. Research shows increased adoption from 17% of firms in 2008 to about 25-30% of firms in 2016. Part of the deployment process of value-based pricing is the implementation of the Economic Value Estimation® (EVE®) process to quantify differential value. While adoption of value-based pricing and the implementation of EVE® is increasing, pricing professionals still face difficulties in designing and executing value-based pricing strategies and particularly executing the EVE® methods across their organizations.

In this unique one-day workshop, we go through the latest science on value-based pricing and on the EVE® process. We also review how to operationalize the outcome in value-based innovation, value-based marketing and value-based selling strategies. This is a unique and powerful workshop to learn theoretical and practical dimensions of EVE® and value quantification. Participants will also receive a signed copy of the “Dollarizing Differentiation Value” book as well as an eBook called “A User’s Guide to Value Modeling.”

Attendees will learn:

  • How to operationalize value-based pricing and EVE® in your daily business and track that your approach is successful
  • How to practically link value-based pricing with value-based innovation, value-based marketing, and value-based selling
  • How to use multi-functional collaboration to accelerate deployment of value-based pricing

(Level 600 Workshop)



Workshop: Price Execution for Sustained Profitable Growth | Navdeep Sodhi

Date: Wed, 2 May, 2018 | 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Location: PPS Spring Conference | Loews Chicago O’Hare Rosemont Hotel in Chicago, IL


Many companies find themselves ill-prepared to handle disruption or tap into innovation opportunities due to a legacy of weak pricing execution. New product introduction, organizational redesign, big data solutions, and other strategic investments – all of these critical functions can fall short without solid price operations.  Customers frame their perception of value received or procurement risk based on their vendors’ ability to execute pricing. Given the ever-changing marketplace, even smart companies need to adapt quickly with continuous price improvement.

However, companies have far more control over their pricing operations than they realize. In the workshop Pricing Execution for Sustained Profitable Growth, we will discuss a breakthrough approach for superior execution, one that can systematically eliminate pricing-related risk or leaks to bring new profits straight to the bottom-line without alienating customers. In this workshop, our discussion will include a holistic organizational approach for keeping senior management engaged while dismantling functional silos with the spirit of continuous improvement.

Attendees will learn:

  • How to find the Hidden Pricing Factory within your organization
  • How to secure trust and organizational support with evidence-based assessment of the overall pricing capability
  • How to align pricing operations with your pricing and sales strategy

(Level 500 Workshop)


European Pricing Summit 2018 | Finance iQ

EU Pricing Summit 2018 300x250
Date: April 16-18, 2018

Location: TBD in London, England

The advent of disruptive technology, growth of e-commerce and increasing competition from global markets are just a few of the reasons why leading companies are spending time and money to develop a pricing strategy that works.

Many pricing leaders are wondering what direction to take their pricing strategy in and want to benchmark with other organisations to decide what is the most profitable option. But KPIs and pricing models are almost always confidential, and the majority of organisations are unwilling to disclose the facts and figures that the industry needs. The industry has a dilemma where practitioners want to have insights on new developments in strategies, but they are usually subject to commercial secret.

Given this situation, IQPC will be launching a limited-access, confidential mentoring panel as part of our European Pricing and Commercial Excellence Summit to enable our clients to obtain first-hand tips from our mentors to assist them in creating the most profitable pricing strategy.

29th Annual Spring Pricing Workshops & Conference | PPS


Date: May 1-4, 2018

Location: Loews Chicago O’Hare Rosemont Hotel in Chicago, IL

We are excited to announce we’ll be in Chicago, IL for our 29th Annual Spring Pricing Workshops & Conference May 1-4, 2018!

You can register now and take advantage of our Early Bird Offer (Buy 2 Get 1 Free, expires March 23rd).




Book: 8 Keys to Price Optimization



Price optimization enables companies to move beyond cost-plus pricing and determine the range of prices that could be charged for a variety of customers and products. Price optimization can increase current operating income by 1 to 4% of sales, which in many cases will translate into a 20 to 50% increase in operating income.

The most sophisticated optimization models available utilize highly sophisticated statistical tools and often, big data. You can buy pricing software that uses those sophisticated tools to help increase your profits. However, that pricing software can be expensive.

The good news is that you can improve your profitability with somewhat simpler tools and using smaller data sets. This e-book will help you get started.


Scott Francis


Strategic Pricing Solutions – 2016

Download it here:
8 Keys to Price Optimization



Paper: The Evolution and Future of Pricing Capabilities | Journal of Revenue and Pricing Management

SL paper cover


For the past 20 years, faced with increased business and pricing complexity, pricing scholars and practitioners have paid more and more attention to pricing capabilities. Grounded in resource-based view and capability-based view of the firm, pricing capabilities have moved over time from a non-existing concept to an emerging theory rich in both qualitative and quantitative research papers. From the mid-2000 to today, pricing scholars have demonstrated the need to pay greater attention toward pricing capabilities to increase competitive advantage and firm performance. This article examines the evolution of the concept of pricing capabilities over time, the current state of pricing capabilities theory and the future ahead for this emerging field.


Most scholars and consultants agree that pricing is a highly complex function (Lancioni et al, 2005; Liozu, 2012). Its complexity might come from organizational demands to deploy pricing innovations (Liozu et al, 2014), from the interfunctional collaboration required to get teams to work together (Lancioni et al, 2005) or from the lack of formal adoption of changemanagement practices to support the deployment of progressive pricing practices, leading to irrational pricing decisions (Liozu, 2013a). Whatever the reason, many leaders still give up and consider pricing a managerial headache (Dolan, 1995). Many firms launching pricing programs are also stuck in the zone of good intentions, wondering how they can better manage pricing complexity (Hinterhuber and Liozu, 2012) to improve profitability.

Recent research shows that attention to pricing increases yearly. Pricing, marketing and management scholars have begun to investigate the technical and social dynamics of pricing, generating a series of papers directly related to pricing capabilities. This focus began with the seminal work of Dutta et al (2003), which established a strong base for additional research and a starting point for an emerging theory in the field of pricing capabilities.

This article traces the evolution of pricing capabilities since the late 1990s. We discuss the theoretical roots of this concept and the current emerging research trends, and we propose areas of future research to advance the theoretical field.

Read complete paper here:

The Evolution and Future of Pricing Capabilities



Study: Trader Joe’s, Costco, Amazon lead consumer preference study | SuperMarket News

Some of the higher performing grocery banners — including Meijer, Publix and Kroger — appeared in the second quartile of retailers in the survey. This quartile had the highest top-of-mind recall and the second-highest financial performance. The group did not perform as well as the top quartile because their price and quality scores were not as strong, but the second group differentiated itself by excelling at secondary preference drivers, such as promotions, rewards and information, the study concluded.

Walmart’s efforts to improve its digital commerce operations and to be a one-stop shopping destination helped the company earn its top-10 ranking, the study found. The retailer ranked first in convenience, third in digital and fourth in prices, helping it overcome bottom-quartile performances in quality, speed, discounts and operations.

The report also divided retailers into four segments based on their price, quality and emotional scores. The “premium” segment scored high in quality but below average in price, while the “price focused” segment tended to do the opposite. The “balanced value” segment either scored above average in both price and quality or was slightly below average in one or the other.

The remainder of the banners in the survey fell into what was described as the “struggling mainstream,” all of which scored below average on price perception, despite often achieving high scores in quality.

The report concluded that a strong price perception was a more consistent driver of financial performance, while quality was more closely correlated with a strong emotional connection. The price-focused and balanced-value segments tended to have stronger and more consistent total sales and sales per store growth, the research found.

Interestingly, the report also found that each of the segments had perceived strengths in certain product categories. The struggling mainstream retailers tended to be strong in dairy, meat/seafood and bakery/deli, while the price-focused retailers tended to be strongest in cleaning products, paper and packaged foods. The premium segment had perceived strengths in natural/organic, bakery/deli and ready-to-eat.

Read complete article here:

Trader Joe’s, Costco, Amazon lead consumer preference study.



Report: You Can Charge Women More, but Should You? | Harvard Business Review

The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (NYDCA) recently released a well-researched report documenting similar products having different prices based on the target customer’s gender. Target, for instance, charged $24.99 for a red scooter and $49.99 for a scooter that appeared to be identical — except for its pink color. (Note: that’s a 100% difference!) Target equalized the prices after the report was released, labeling the differential a “system error.”

The NYDCA report also provides examples such as women’s hair care products selling at an average 48% premium compared to similar men’s products, and Levi charging 29% more for the female version of its 501 CT jeans. The study, which has garnered a good bit of media coverage, focuses on 794 products in 35 categories, and it concludes that in 30 of these categories, women pay more than men.

These findings spotlight a dicey pricing quandary faced by most companies: should you charge certain demographic groups more simply because you have the ability to profit by doing so?

The bottom line: the free market may be the backbone of a thriving economy…but it isn’t necessarily fair to all consumers.

While I’ve long trumpeted pricing as an underutilized profit lever at companies, being aware of the implications of offering different prices to different market segments is important. Beyond the public relations concern of avoiding customer backlash if unseemly pricing practices are exposed, pricing reflects the moral fabric of a company. In this sense, pricing is more than profit. Executives — who often are not well-versed in how their products are priced — need to reflect on whether current strategies result in prices that represent their company’s intended values.

Read complete article here:

You Can Charge Women More, but Should You?.



Pricing News & Discussion

Lowe’s is having a ‘Black Friday’ sale right now—yes, in March | AZ Central

Lowe’s is having a ‘Black Friday’ sale right now—yes, in March | AZ Central

If you’re living in New England like us, it may feel like you’re currently stuck in a snow globe. But still doesn’t mean it’s too early to be thinking about upgrading your outdoor living space for spring. Right now, Lowe’s is having a Spring Black Friday Sale with huge deals on everything for your garden […]


Whole Foods calls meeting with key vendors as tensions flare | CNBC

Whole Foods calls meeting with key vendors as tensions flare | CNBC

A major point of debate for its larger vendors is the new servicing fee, proposed in the last few months, which will charge vendors for Whole Foods’ efforts to centralize its merchandising, sources said. Still, some of the sources noted their reliance on Whole Foods as a customer gives them little power with which to […]


The subways are a mess. Can congestion pricing help? | CSNY

The subways are a mess. Can congestion pricing help? | CSNY

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has put his considerable political clout behind congestion pricing, which would implement fees for drivers entering the southern half of Manhattan in order to improve traffice while also raising much-needed revenue to fix the city’s aging subway system. The proposal has divided state lawmakers in Albany, and it’s unclear whether there’s enough […]


Trump’s drug-price crackdown misses the mark, experts say | Washington Examiner

Trump’s drug-price crackdown misses the mark, experts say | Washington Examiner

Less than a month into his new job, Alex Azar got some praise from his new boss, President Trump. The newly minted head of the Department of Health and Human Services had already done a great job lowering drug prices, according to Trump. Azar was “really setting the world on fire now with your lowering […]


Unlock Six Sigma Pricing | Professional Pricing Society

Unlock Six Sigma Pricing | Professional Pricing Society

Companies have the power to implement pricing capabilities needed for sustained profitable growth – Six Sigma Pricing. Navdeep Sodhi, Managing Director of Sodhi Pricing, is our featured guest blogger sharing expert advice on how to unlock potential in your business. The State of Pricing  Within every company exists a hidden pricing factory that holds the key […]


Ticket resale sites face crackdown on ‘opaque and misleading’ pricing | Marketing Week

Ticket resale sites face crackdown on ‘opaque and misleading’ pricing | Marketing Week

Secondary ticketing operators including StubHub, Viagogo, Seatwave and Get Me In have said the will work with the ad regulator to crackdown on some of their advertising practices as the ad regulator responds to concerns about misleading pricing in the sector. The Advertising Standards Authority has concluded a formal investigation into the sector, finding that […]

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NYC Taxis Could Soon Charge Surge Prices Like Uber | NY Patch

NYC Taxis Could Soon Charge Surge Prices Like Uber | NY Patch

NEW YORK, NY — New York City taxis have to charge the same rates even in bad weather or heavy traffic, when competing services like Uber and Lyft make passengers pay expensive “surge” prices. But that could soon change under a Taxi and Limousine Commission proposal that would let cab companies charge different rates for […]


Bitcoin price: Cryptocurrency down 22.5 per cent in one week amid fears of regulation | Express.co.uk

Bitcoin price: Cryptocurrency down 22.5 per cent in one week amid fears of regulation | Express.co.uk

Bitcoin took a hit on Wedensday after the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced it will require digital asset exchanges to register with the federal agency. Prices plunged by more than $1,000 in the space of an hour, falling from $10,673.03 at 4.40pm GMT to $9,481.45 by 5.22pm GMT on Wednesday, according to CoinDesk. […]


Governor signs drug price transparency bill | PortlandTribune

Governor signs drug price transparency bill | PortlandTribune

Gov. Kate Brown has signed into law a bill that requires pharmaceutical manufacturers to publicly disclose reasons for steep increases in drug prices. Several other states, including California, have taken similar measures as the prices of drugs have skyrocketed without an apparent reason. House Bill 4005 won bipartisan sponsorship and overwhelming support in both the […]


Airbnb Claims ‘Price Gouging’ by Detroit Hotels During NCAA Games This Weekend | Deadline Detroit

Airbnb Claims ‘Price Gouging’ by Detroit Hotels During NCAA Games This Weekend | Deadline Detroit

Deadline Detroit contacted the two named sites, both part of the Marrioitt group, for a chance to discuss rate changes during peak booking periods. Sales and marketing directors Scott Stinebaugh of the Westin on Washington Boulevard and Judy Booth at the riverfront Marriott didn’t return voice messages left early Wednesday afternoon. A communications team member […]


Schumer wants probe into airlines’ new scheme for setting fares | NY Daily News

Schumer wants probe into airlines’ new scheme for setting fares | NY Daily News

Sen. Chuck Schumer is calling for a federal investigation into airlines mining personal data in order to charge higher fares to certain customers. Schumer (D-N.Y.), the Senate minority leader, warned of “dynamic pricing” software airlines are developing — which could track the websites a potential flier has visited and figure out details like their income […]

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Cartoons and Quotes


“The show is not selling, let’s raise prices!”

     – Ronda Helton