Stop charging by the hour

Uncategorized Jan 25, 2020

So much of what we wrestle with as freelancers and small business owners is about earning what we want to, not what we just ‘hope’ to earn. So today I added the bonus ‘how to escape hourly rates’ to the MindMafia PsychoPricing course, in advance of the re-launch next week.

The bonus is about how to make the leap to charging on a project basis. And I’m asking my students to tell me what’s missing for them – because that’s how we roll at MindMafia. What’s the point of a bonus that you can’t use, or one that’s missing the one thing you need to know? Running a business is a conversation, not for you to dictate from on high.

Because you can’t know what the answer is if you don’t listen to the question.
Funnily enough, the question we first ask of ourselves when we’re pricing is ‘what can I charge?’, when the really good question is ‘what problem can I solve, so that people will pay me well?

There is an abundance of terrible advice out there. Internet gurus encouraging you to charge – well, whatever you can get away with. While the same guru ignores that you might scalp ten people for a huge fee, but that ignores the longer-term consequences of ripping people off. Equally, charge too low, and you devalue your services. If you met someone selling a diamond ring on a street corner, and they only wanted $100, would you trust them? No. It’s all about striking a balance, and the value you offer.

I myself have paid 1000’s of dollars for a course that was worth every penny to me, because it got me from where I was, to where I wanted to be. Equally, I’ve paid for cheaper courses that were so overpriced that I would rather light myself on fire and dance naked in the street than to give them another penny, even if I thought their new course was amazing, and solved all my problems. Because humans have a tendency to be pro-social. Which means they will actually punish others they think are out of line even if it costs them personally. (Apart from psychopaths, they just take the money and run, in what’s known as the ultimatum game).

When you buy a course, it’s not only the money you spend that you need to take into account, but whether it is worth your time. In fact, the more you spend, the more you’re expecting the course to TELL YOU WHAT TO DO, in the SHORTEST TIME POSSIBLE.

Which is a long way of saying: solve a problem, charge accordingly, and don’t waste your time - it’s your most precious resource.

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