4 Simple Tips To Pricing Your Freelance

by Mehdi BAH

So you’re looking for freelance work? Congratulations! Get ready to be frustrated! That being said you love freelance work much more than working in a studio. You have a short attention span (why did you pick animation then?) so you like that with freelance you’re always doing something different with each project. You get that in a studio somewhat, but you like that your days are completely different in structure not just projects.

4 Tips To Pricing Your Freelance:

4 tips to pricing your freelance

Do You Really Want To Be A Freelancer :

The difficult thing with freelance work though is it’s not steady. You may be incredibly busy for a month, and then spend the next 2 months sitting on the couch waiting for an email. So there’s an important aspect of freelance animation you need to consider when looking, and that’s the price.

The best way to think about it is not only does this freelance job have to support you while you’re working on it, but it also has to support you until your next freelance job.

If there’s downtime at a studio, you’ll still get paid. Down time during freelance? Not so much.

A practice I like to do is try to compare how long you think the project will take and how much they are paying you, and then compare that to what you think a good wage would be. A rule of thumb I was taught is try to never take a lower wage than the job before you. But how do you know what a good wage would be?

We found this website called Your Rate which helped out a lot. We put in information comparable to my friends who worked in studios and found a base number. Once you had that, You could start trying to figure out the freelance gigs payment against that standard pay. It’s tricky and I’m bad at math, but basically you think about it like this.

Further Reading: A Step-by-Step Guide To Become a Successful Freelancer

How Long The Project Will Take :

I first look at how long the project is going to be and how much that time would be worth with my number I developed from Your Rate, and then I usually add onto it to help pad some time after the project is over incase I hit an unexpected dry spell.

Then the real world comes in and messes everything up.

Get Paid :

Unfortunately, the truth of the matter is you will rarely get paid what you are actually worth when you’re starting out in the animation world. Hardly anybody knows what goes into animation, so because of that it’s rare to find a client who prices things according to how hard the task is as opposed to what their budgeting people think about how Disney works.

So now we negotiate! I like to work so I try to do as many projects as I can. Almost all of my negotiations go like this: I’ll start talking to the client about what they want and I’ll give them an estimate of how much it would cost them using the method I wrote about above. They are surprised at how much animation costs and how much time it takes, so they immediately say they don’t have that much. Now I play it cool and ask how much their budget is that they were thinking, then I’ll explain to them what they can get for that kind of money.

Talking about money : What Small Business Owners Need to Know About Debit & Credit

Communication With The Clients :

I’ll tell them that for however much they are asking I can deliver this much, which is almost always way less than they were originally expecting. For the most part though everyone understands and doesn’t have a problem scaling back their projects. I am just honest and lay things out for them about how much time each thing will take and explain that time is money. There’s one more critically important step for situations like this, and that’s to say they get one round of revisions.

As a rule of thumb I presume that all the clients who way under budget an animation job won’t know when to call it quits. So if you say they get one round of revisions and anything beyond that they have to pay you more, you safe guard yourself from a project going on for months longer than you expected. It’s win win for you, you either get more money (yay) or can move on to another freelance job.

This article will help you for your taxes : All You Should Know About Taxes For A Small Business Employment

Conclusion :

There’s a lot more about freelance that goes into how you price yourself, stuff like taxes, if you have another person working on the project, expenses etc. but looking at pricing like this is a good start to build on.

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