06/30/2008: "Should a Copywriter Negotiate Price With Prospective Clients?"
Should you negotiate your fee with your prospective clients? The short answer --- NO. When you negotiate, you're telling your client that you intentionally put your price too high so it could be adjusted down. Don't do that. Here's why.
When you give a prospective client your fee, you spent a lot of time figuring out how much time and skill you would put into the project. Chances are, even at that, you didn't plan for everything and you'll end up doing more than you'll be paid for. It almost always happens that way.
But . . . there IS a way to deal with a prospective client who nibbles away at you to lower your fee. First, don't let him nibble too much. If he does, say "goodbye" to him. You don't need him.
But if he has a fairly reasonable budget but not quite what you need to do the job, you can start taking things off the table.
For example, say you give three revisions in your best package. Those revisions or rewrites have enormous value. In fact, they're priceless if a client needs them!
But if she won't pay your full fee, you tell her, "Okay, that's fine. I'll give you one revision within three days rather than three revisions within thirty days. I'll also take out my consultation (which is valued at $300.00 per hour) and I'll take out phone calls because they're time consuming. We'll deal entirely by email. If that's agreeable, I'll lower my fee."
Now, you can take out one or two services at a time or take them all out. But NEVER, never in this lifetime, lower your fee without taking something of REAL value off the table.
The prospective client MUST lose something if you lose something. He gains when you gain. That's the way deals come together.
So don't negotiate. It's a loser's game.