Okay, so we’re back. If you haven’t read part one of this series—do so. This part won’t make sense unless you read my Kim Kardashian Botox analogy. Okay it will, but I still like that damn story.
The Rates of Other Writers
So right now you should be honestly assessing your skill compared to other freelance writers in your niche, and assessing the quirks you bring to the table—your voice, experience, knowledge, etc. All of this will help you get a feel for where you fit in the scheme of things compared to providers of a similar service. You might think the next step is to look at other freelance writer’s rates and determine your own based on your unique cornucopia of skills, voice and experience compared to theirs. But you shouldn't.
Basing your rates on another writer's rates is exactly what you should NOT do. Why? Well, how much self-worth does the other writer have? You can’t know. You can’t know how accurate their rates are for their value and that really has no bearing on your worth anyway.
I’m sure there are some out there who would disagree with me, but my opinion is this: Creating rates is not about pricing yourself against competitors. It is not about finding out what your market can bear and it is not about being above a certain threshold. It’s about working for a price that fills your financial need AND is commensurate with your worth and then finding the market that will happily pay that rate.
I don’t have any clue what other finance writers charge, nor do I care. I do know what experience they have and don’t have, I know how they write and how they don’t write and I know where they have strengths that I don’t and where I have strengths that they don’t. That is all I need to know. Based on that information I’ve decided how valuable I am to the marketplace and how to sell myself to it. I have set rates that pay my bills and make me feel good about what I do and what I provide. I'm not just scraping by but I'm also not charging so much that my abilities and skill don't match my product.
I know some of you won't believe this but if you honestly assess yourself and find that your worth correlates to a rate that is far above your competitor's, you won't be pricing yourself out of your market. Why? Because once you understand your worth you will have a better idea of where and how to find the right clients for you and how to sell yourself. You will be rightfully confident and you will know your product---YOU---inside and out (literally ;)... ewww).
Did this blog post help you set a rate? I hope not because that wasn’t the goal. The goal of this post was to help you understand self-worth as it relates to rates which will lay the foundation to creating the rate that you deserve.