Quick question about PPH

(8 Posts)
CopyWoman Fri 16-Jan-15 10:33:01

Hi. I have been on PPH for a while and have not had much success actually securing work on there. I am still in the process of building up my business, so I want to use it to gain experience more than anything. I suspect the main reason is that I am not bidding low enough, but how low do you have to go?! I am getting some work privately, which has been much better paid but I am really keen to build up my portfolio. Should I bid really low until I have a few jobs under my belt and then build it up from there?

OP’s posts: |
MrsMargoLeadbetter Fri 16-Jan-15 12:12:11

I think the majority of bids go to those bidding at the lower end of the scale. However, not always the lowest.

I buy quite a bit on there and I generally go for the middleish quote. I personally question the quality of someone suggesting they can do x for virtually nothing...

Posting on a job on there is very eye opening. For a client's rebranding project the bids went from £60 to £3000 - yes really!

I am guessing that PPH is mainly used by those wanting to build their portfolio. If that is the case with you, then I'd give it a go. I'd try to get in there quickly and tailor your response. You might find a new ongoing client, but if you deliver x for a bargain rate they might not be willing to move up.

I posted a couple of years ago with some thoughts (under an old username) should they be of help -


Good luck.

MrsMargoLeadbetter Fri 16-Jan-15 12:17:42

Re 'how low?' I would be inclined to present in reference to your normal rate. Eg:

"To write a 2 sided A4 flyer I would normally charge £xx for 3 hours, but for this job I will reduce my rate to £xx for the 3 hours"

At least it will give you some logic to the rate, just for you if nothing else. How low depends on what you are willing to work for....Have you checked out your 'competition' on there? Search what a client might search. I think you can still see some freelancers hourly rate if they display it.

Also have you looked the Hourlies? They are fixed prices jobs. If there is a particular niche thing you can do might be worth offering to set that up? I use hourlies as they are quicker to sort out, no shifting through bids etc.


Kewcumber Fri 16-Jan-15 12:22:15

I have used them to source book-keepers and I definitely don't go for the cheapest quote. I rule out anyone who is obviously unsuitable (and obviously didn't even read the brief properly), then rule out anyone who came in over budget and look at the rest. Examples of work if its design is also very important.

It depends how much of what you're doing is a "commodity" and pretty much anyone will do in which case price will be important. If not references matter (I do read them) so get a few cheap jobs under your belt in exchange for decent comments - I think you can be honest with clients that you are only discounting in order to build up a track record. IN fact it can be a selling point that they can get you cheap by getting in at the beginning and doesn't commit you to continuing on that price going forward.

Good luck.

CopyWoman Fri 16-Jan-15 12:25:08

Thanks. That's great advice. I don't want it to become my main source of income but I've only completed a few private projects so far, and really need to get further experience. I'm probably being a bit too selective about what I bid for too! Any more advice would be welcome!

OP’s posts: |
whatdoesittake48 Fri 16-Jan-15 17:04:57

I am one of PPH's top sellers (Copywriting) and all I can say is be very careful. I started with them about 6-7 years ago, when they first started and basically got sucked in. In order to get the first jobs I pitched quite low at about £10 an hour or per 500 words. Now I get £35 per 500 words. But the clients from the old days still expect and get the old rate.

I use PPH to fill in gaps during my week and rely on it to a certain extent, therefore I need to keep my hand in by completing regular work via the site. Your ranking will drop quickly if you don't do this.

I am never obliged to do any job that are offered to me (unless they are an hourlie) but it can be very hard to turn down work as it just doesn't feel right to do so. You never know where the next job will come from. So sometimes i find myself doing hours of work for a pittance, just because someone has begged me to do it.

That said, for anyone wanting to build up a small client base and portfolio, it is great.

To get your first jobs i would go for the easier and less demanding underpaid jobs. make sure it is something you could do in your sleep so you don't mind being paid next to nothing. Then incrementally up your rates.

Despite my hourlie rate being £30 I get constant invites.

CopyWoman Sat 17-Jan-15 16:56:15

Thank you whatdoesittake48 - you give great advice. I'm very grateful. One more quick question. I get lots of invites to bid. Does this come from the buyer, or does PPH just match it to sellers with relevant skills?

OP’s posts: |
MyRealNamesBernard Fri 23-Jan-15 11:46:38

Hello all. I am really interested in this thread as I also recently joined PPH.

I have sent proposals for lots of jobs, and discovered I seem to be most successful when I bid for work within my niche area. I managed to get one very big job, which took two weeks, and paid poorly but has instantly updated my portfolio. I looked upon this job as "work experience" (I have been out of the game for three years, so my portfolio was terribly out of date) with the added bonus of a bit of pocket money.

I now pick and choose my jobs carefully. Rather than putting in mediocre pitches for lots of jobs, I only bid for things I think I will really enjoy or have a real interest in, and spend a bit of time really tailoring the bid, and making it stand out. If the job doesn't have a good rate, it must be something which will either add something special to my portfolio or have some other benefit, eg promoting an issue for which I am passionate.

It took me a while to establish how it works on there, and I still don't think I have completely got my head around it. But one thing I have learned is that bidding for work 'per hour' is not helpful. As a writer, I found it is better for both the client and me to offer a rate 'per word', a rate which I increase if lots of research is involved.

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