How To Hire A Copywriter And Save Money By Demanding Project Rates

Recently I was attending a networking event here in Seattle. After seeing the words “Online Marketing” on my name tag, one business owner “Heloise” immediately began to share her story.
“I hired a content strategist to help with social media,” Heloise said. “The cost seemed so reasonable. He quoted just a small hourly rate.” She told us what he charged.
“Wow, that sounds like a good deal,” we all said.
“Sure. Except by the time he put in all the hours he claimed to need, I ended up paying hundreds of dollars to update my social networking for the month. I figured he’d just need an hour or two.”
“Not a good deal,” we agreed, especially when she told us how little he actually did.
Another business owner, “James,”was able to top this story. “I hired a designer at $80 an hour,” he said. “He estimated maybe 4 or 5 hours to finish the job. He took a long time to create the first version, which was not what I wanted. Then he charged me to revise the website again…and more to fix a few minor mistakes. By the time we were done, my $320 website was close to $3000.”
We had a moment of respectful silence. She could have had a powerful website – with content – for what she paid for design only. And her website doesn’t work as effectively as she had hoped.
Hiring by the hour can be costly.
Many business owners hire resources based on an hourly rate. At first, this option seems reasonable. You think, “You’ll just need a few hours to do the job.” You figure, “A copywriter who charges $25 an hour will cost me less than one who charges $150 an hour.”
The truth is, the higher-priced copywriter probably has a lot more experience. The lower-priced resource might take many more hours to complete the same job…and might not deliver the quality you need.
That’s why I encourage all my clients to insist on a project rate, not an hourly rate, when they deal with any type of resource. Often prospects demand hourly rates for a medium size writing project. Realistically, this type of project normally bills at $1500. Your resource person probably wants to ask you, “Well, I can quote $50 for a minimum of 30 hours. Or $100 for a minimum of 15 hours. Which would you prefer?”
Sound far-fetched? Not at all. Many clients think a writer starts with an hourly rate and then estimates the number of hours. I suspect many start with a job quote, based on prevailing market rates, and then back into the hourly rate.
Do you really get more value if the job takes longer? I don’t think so.

No Comments Found

Leave a Reply