As a writer, it’s important to know your worth. By this I mean knowing how much your work is worth and having respect for your great commodity, time. Earlier this month I was reminded why I should follow my gut and be selective when caving in to how much I charge to write for clients.
I made the mistake of compromising in pay when I knew that the amount of money I was charging was right for the work this client was asking for. Yet and still, I went against my better judgement and dropped my rate. I love writing like the next person, but it’s not a hobby for me.
Besides freelancing, I’m a content marketer/strategist and a ghostwriter. I write for money. And any writer who calls themselves a freelance writer should write for money too.
Note: To be clear, guest blogging is something different, you should definitely do that if that helps you get closer to your goals.
Whenever you write for free, this usually gives the person the impression that your work is worth how much it costs, nothing. Not everyone is like this, but the people who take advantage of writers do.
The struggling writer is dated. Writers can make sustainable incomes when they stand by what they’re worth.According to Payscale.com, freelance writers can make up to six figures a year. Click To Tweet
Obviously, this will come from the amount of experience you have, what you specialize in, and the type of clientele you target.
In this situation of me dropping my rate, I was taken full advantage of. The scope of work kept on changing but requests for extra payment to cover the changes were disputed. I had to politely let this client know that this would not work for me, handed in the work that was originally requested, and went on my merry way with a new lesson learned that I just had to share.
Never be ashamed to charge what you charge as a freelancer. You picked your prices for a reason because you know how much work will go into writing something and you know what your skills are worth. I’m not saying you should never compromise on price. If you have a client who you adore and love working with then go for it if you can sleep well at night with your decision. If the work you are doing will give you a bigger return on your investment and you can live with dropping your rates, then work for that lower rate.
I’ve had to write for free in the past to build my portfolio and rolodex of contacts, so I would never say to avoid writing for free. But I can say that if you work for free or for close to free, make sure that what you are doing is bringing you closer to your overall goal. That is the only reason you should bend on price because everything else is a waste of your time and efforts.
If you’re ever faced with a client who has little respect for your work, tries to under pay you, or says something like “I would write it myself, but I’m too busy,” thank them for their time and politely tell them you’re booked (in your best Kelly Price voice).
Writing is a profession for me, not just a hobby. If you are a freelancer who’s either writing full-time or on the side, you deserve to get paid for what you do. My landlord and bill collectors don’t accept exposure or excuses as payment, and neither should you.
Image Credit: Instagram (@everydaythebrand)