Advice on a rate? Margot and others?

(9 Posts)
LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Tue 02-Aug-16 18:15:39

Hi, I've been asked to meet a small local business who want to take on someone for around 15 hours pw on a freelance retained basis to do copywriting, sourcing and writing up stories, and run their Twitter feed. Will probably involve working with the single marketing person to do a content plan, contribute to general marketing activity etc.

My current rates for copywriting start at £400 pd and I just can't see them wanting to pay over 3k a month for this service. That said, while I'll negotiate for guaranteed work, I can't/won't drop too much - although I've had a horrendously quiet summer, I need to remember I'm usually busy and selling most of my hours.

I guess what I'm asking in a long-winded way is how much do you think is average for this sort of thing - I don't want to be blindsided in the interview or indeed pitch too low if I'm getting them completely wrong.

Not London, small successful business with around 30 employees.

LyndaNotLinda Tue 02-Aug-16 18:30:02

I charge less for longer term contracts. I've dropped as low as £300/day for guaranteed work two days a week. But I would also make sure that they pay you the day rate no matter what - so if it's quieter one week, they still pay you the full rate. This means that if you WFH, you can potentially take on other work while charging them.

And I wouldn't do any of that unless they commit to a 3 month contract minimum.

And don't be afraid to walk away!

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Tue 02-Aug-16 22:21:18

Thanks Lynda that makes sense to drop a bit for a proper guarantee. We'll see how it goes. Totally will walk away if it's not enough.

MrsMargoLeadbetter Wed 03-Aug-16 03:30:55

Margo calling! Hello.*Wilson*. Sorry to hear you have been quiet...

Have you downloaded their accounts? Would be good to see if it tells you anything about income? Any idea what they pay on salaries? I think it can provide context.

I don't think £400 is that outrageous as a day rate. I think I'd be starting with "My day rate is £450, but I can come down to £400 for a long term contract". And see what they say? I would have to say I agree with Lynda anything under £300 feels v low.

A £300 day rate means a £200 a week "opportuntity cost" (on 2 days of work) against potential better paid work. Which is £10k a year!

Have you done a spreadsheet looking at the various rates and what time it leaves you to do better paid work?

As Lynda says, the key to reduced rate contracts is making sure you get paid whatever their need is. I didn't do that one of my contracts and it is a PITA!

A male peer of mine this week, was berating me for setting my sights too low in terms of size of potential client and therefore day rate. He recently secured a £660 day rate for 4 days a week x 6 months!! Not same set up as you are pitching for Wilson but I'd admired his belief in his value!!

Good luck. Let us know how it goes.

LyndaNotLinda Wed 03-Aug-16 09:40:41

That's a really good way of thinking about it re opportunity cost Margo. And about setting our sights high enough. V useful points

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Wed 03-Aug-16 10:13:57

I'll have a look at their accounts, that's a great idea Margo, ta.

Absolutely, I've looked at the cost of opportunity already. I have to put aside the fact it's been a crap summer (Brexit I'm thinking, then my own holidays, then the traditional August slump) and look at how busy I normally am, otherwise I'll jump for something which will cost me longer term.

Meeting is on Fri so I'll let you know!

GrumpyOldBag Sat 06-Aug-16 20:12:43

I am always prepared to discount for clients offering regular work (retainer) over a period of a few months or more.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Sat 06-Aug-16 20:41:25

Well the meeting went well. I said my rate started at £400 and he didn't look too shocked, although said he'd be looking for 'a deal' - which of course is completely fine, I'm not expecting him to pay full rate on a retainer. So I need to work out where I'd be comfortable and let him know.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Wed 17-Aug-16 11:20:17

Just updating - they (eventually) came back and said I was beyond their budget. I think I was too - they could easily get what they wanted cheaper (obvs from someone less excellent). I'm actually relieved - culturally they weren't a good fit for me and as my prime reason for considering it was to spend time working directly with others, that was a big thing.

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