I’ve left this one until last as everything discussed above, if left unchecked, can actively contribute to us grossly underpricing our work. We’re all guilty of leading by feeling when we start out and it’s such a terrible way to think about pricing.
Your prices should be based on facts
It’s a fact that you’ve got rent and other bills to pay. It’s a fact that there’s only so many hours in a day. It’s a fact that you need sleep, exercise, social interaction and nourishment to be able to function. Your prices have to make room for all of those things and if they don’t, it means that you’ll be working crazy hours just to make ends meet. That’s completely unsustainable and will only batter your confidence as you’ll feel like you aren’t good enough to work this all out.
Start with the facts and calculate your minimum income from that. Your rate should allow you to make that through a realistic number of projects per month.
We often have a perception that people who charge ‘proper money’ in the creative industries are egomaniacs. They’re not – they’re just people who understand that in order to create a reasonable work-life balance, their rate has to stand up to the reality of their situation.
You deserve to be paid properly
Remember as well that your rate also shapes a client’s perception of the value of your work. If you’re cheap, they don’t expect much. If you’re expensive, they’re more inclined to think that you really know what you’re doing. It’s not about fooling anyone though, it’s about believing in yourself. Whatever stage you’re at in your career, you deserve to be paid properly. If everyone who showed promise bankrupted themselves before hitting their stride, who would be left?
If you’re a graphic designer and don’t know where to start when it comes to pricing you can enrol on The Price is Right for just £49.99 and get immediate access to hours of video instruction from Alec covering rate setting, pricing strategies, confidence, negotiation, contracts, invoicing, chasing payment and much more. Click here to sign up and you can start building the tools that you need for a sustainable freelance design career today.