Education

The Economics Of Freelance Writing

If you’re going to sell your own stuff, whether it be writing or graphic design, you’ve got to understand the basics of economics. Plenty of freelancers have huge egos and feel that the market place owes them some respect. If you are really as good as you think you, you might be able to get away with this.
For the rest of us, we need to humble ourselves with the laws of economics. Because just like the laws of physics, these operate whether we like them or not. This article will be your guide.
The bottom line is that in any market, the price is set by the consumers. There’s some kind of economic mythology out there that says the price is determined by the manufacturer. If they use more expensive raw materials and labor, then they can charge more.
Or if you’ve spent five years in the top design school in the world, or you’ve learned from the top copywriters that charge ten thousand dollars an hour for one on one instruction, that gives you the “right” to charge your customers as much as you think your worth.
But the truth is that the consumers have all the power. Because if you can’t sell your stuff at the price you are asking, you’ve only got two options. One is to lower your prices, the other is to go out of business.
This can be a hard pill to swallow for somebody who’s taking a writing course that cost them several thousand dollars and thinks the world owes them a huge paycheck. There is only one thing that justifies a high price for any service.
Huge demand.
Many “gurus” spend their whole careers using all kinds of marketing tactics to generate this demand, so they can then sell their writing courses for thousand of dollars.
As a writer, you need to create your own demand. If you’re just starting out, this can be tough.
But there really is only one way. Since the dawn of time, there’s been a war between entrepreneurs. (That’s what you are by the way, an entrepreneur). How is this war fought?
Person A comes up with a product. It’s a brand new idea. Many people want it. So person A can get away with charging a lot for it. Then person B comes along, and sees there’s a huge demand.
So he or she creates a similar product. Only it’s a little bit better, and a little bit cheaper. Then person C comes along and does the same thing. Pretty soon, this product is selling at just barely above profitability.
This is why new products are always expensive, and then after a couple years they are much, much cheaper.
How does this apply to you as a writer?
Well, in case you haven’t noticed, there are plenty of writers out there slinging words for cash. How can you compete? The same way every entrepreneur has since the dawn of time. Create a better product, and sell if for a cheaper price. If you are just starting out, it’s essential that you do both.
Once people see how good your stuff, is, they’ll want more of it. And as more and more people find out about you and how skilled you are, you can slowly start to raise your prices.
Remember, you can only raise your prices to the level of the skills that you deliver to your clients.
But the more you write, the more you’ll develop your skills. And the more you develop your skills, the more you can charge.
That means that the sooner you get started, the sooner you’ll be financially independent.
What are you waiting for?

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