Cost? A *Minus* $58.64!

Cost? A *Minus* $58.64!

money2Any good professional knows that sometimes customers shoot themselves in the foot by skimping to try and save a few bucks, and sometimes they come out really well by actually calling the professional for some help.

Recently one of my customers purchased a new computer when her old computer died. She asked me to rescue the data, if possible, from the old computer.  

It turned out that it wasn’t that difficult to rescue her data. Another issue, though, was Microsoft Office, which wasn’t immediately recoverable. And for whatever reason, she didn’t have the CDs. But she was prepared to go out and buy a new copy of the program.

I suggested an alternative that would work well in her particular situation: a free office suite that works with Microsoft Office files.


  • She got her data recovered and transferred to her new computer.
  • She got set up with a good backup system that alleviated her worries about the possibility of losing all of her family photos.
  • She got a couple other programs installed on her new computer for her.
  • She got set up for word processing and other “Office” tasks like spreadsheets and making slide presentations.

The entire job took not much more than an hour, and she paid me $80. A good price for all the stuff she got done, and she didn’t even have to unplug her computer and take it somewhere, because I came to her house.

But wait…

Counting tax, the customer avoided spending at least $138.64 by not buying a new copy of Microsoft Office Home and Student. (That $138.64 is the Wal-Mart price; the same item at Best Buy would’ve been $160.26.)

The total “cost” of my service then, in this case? Depending on how you calculate it, she made either $58.64 or $80.26, by having me come out and help her.

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