115. Get Your Pricing Structure In Order
Order is a design principle.
So what does order have to do with how you price your freelance work?
As a designer and illustrator, I deal with order on a daily basis. You do, too, if you’re a creative who’s selling product or serving clients. Order is important to function and communication. It’s important to the design process and to our everyday lives. It’s easier to get things done if you have order in your days. It’s easier to see what needs to be done.
So as I was ruminating on the concept of order — I’ll be fleshing this out with more depth in another episode — the problem of pricing came to mind. Now that’s not a usual connection, but it made sense for me. Pricing our work is one of those difficult areas we deal with, and truly, most of use don’t charge enough for what we provide. Freelancers often let the client dictate what they’ll pay, or fear asking too much, and end up frustrated, unable to sustain their businesses.
Again, this is a mindset problem.
Where order and what you charge for your services get married is in the idea of structure. You need a consistent structure for your pricing. Structure is a framework. Again, if you’re a designer, illustrator, photographer, or writer, you deal with structure every day. This should not be a new idea for you.
Remember, setting things in order facilitates activity — actions, schedules, work in general. It’s necessary. You can’t wing it. You can’t test drive it.
I truly desire that freelancers — independent contractors — truly act as business owners. Most don’t, and find themselves in trouble because of it. From my own experience I ran into so many problems because I wan’t thinking about business. I wanted to be paid. I wanted high quality clients, but I didn’t have the structures in place to get paid or attract those high-value projects. So I learned from experience what not to do, which led me to what to do. I’m teaching you so you don’t have to learn from experience.
I had a lot of problem-solving to do. Out of that, along with research, questioning, and trial and error, I devised structures for my business and one of those was a pricing structure.
I brought order to my creative rates, income, spending, and budgeting. What a difference it’s made. You can have that too, if these are areas where you’re struggling.
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