Do you sometimes feel like your rates are too low? Are you afraid to increase them? When you earn a living as a freelance writer, you get to set your rates. You decide how much you'll earn. But sometimes writers lack confidence. They worry that clients won't think they're worth what they want to charge. Not true (unless you're insane and you think you're going to start earning a 7 figure income right off the bat).
It's time to forget about those insecurities, those cheap writing ads you see everywhere, and that crazy notion that earning more money freelance writing is just too hard. Today I challenge you to make a change and start making more money!
Today I want you to step outside of your element, put your foot down, and say "I'm worth more than this!" I want you to take your normal rate, and I want you to increase it. If you're charging $.10 per word or less, I want you to double it! If you're charging significantly more (let's say $.50 per word), then increase it by a smaller increment but one that's still a significant change.
I don't want you to start emailing all of your existing clients to tell them you're raising your rates. I don't want you to update your rates on your website. That's not the point of this challenge. This challenge is about getting you to take a chance.
Start by looking for a new market, job ad, or even a site or company you'd like to write for that isn't advertising. Normally I don't advocate pitching if you can avoid it, but today is special. I want you to find a new prospective client to pitch a project idea to. Pitch them with your increased rate (and obviously don't bring your older / existing rates to their attention - if this works out for you, you should continue doing it until all of your work is coming in at the higher rate).
You might be surprised to get a "yes" for a project you otherwise may have felt unqualified for. It happened for me and several colleagues of mine. When I was ready to pitch my first independent Web writing client for a specific article, I knew what they were paying my colleagues. I raised it $.10 per word (to $.35 per word), because that's what my time was worth to me then (and it was a relatively simple piece that took little more than an hour or so). I pitched my rate. They accepted. They didn't question it. They didn't try to talk me down. They said "yes," I wrote the article, and they paid me. Now that my time is constantly in demand, I have even more flexibility in what I charge. You can get there too. But you have to take that first step in deciding what you're worth and asking for it.
So go ahead. Get out of your comfort zone for once, and you may find you quite like it there.
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Jennifer Mattern is a professional blogger, freelance business writer, and indie author. She began writing for clients in 1999 and started her first blog in 2004.
She owns 3 Beat Media -- a publishing and client services company which operates All Indie Writers as well as several other websites and blogs including The Busy Author's Guide and BizAmmo. Jenn comes from a background in online PR and social media consulting, having owned a small PR firm for several years before choosing to pursue a full-time writing and publishing career.
Jenn also writes fiction under multiple pen names in the areas of children's fiction, mysteries, and horror fiction. Jenn is an active member of the Horror Writers Association (HWA) and currently serves as the organization's Assistant Coordinator of Promotions and Social Media.
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