Marketing Monday: Your Freelance Value, Marketed

What I’m listening to: The Sky is Crying by Stevie Ray Vaughan

January is nearing a close, but that doesn’t mean your chance to redeem a failing freelance writing career is over. In fact, every day you wake up is another chance to get it right, to plan it out, to start on a different path, to leave behind inertia and limbo.

Today is Monday. As promised, I’m putting out one more marketing move that could turn it around for you. Remember to adapt what fits, forget what doesn’t. Nothing will keep you on the same, dull path like trying everything at once and dropping everything at once. Better one thing done consistently than fifteen things done once or twice.

In other words, find something that will become your new routine. Try this, in fact.

Today’s Marketing Move:

Market your value.

Sometimes customers have to be convinced that spending money on you is worth it, especially if your price is higher than your competitors’ prices. Show clients how investing in professionals saves time and money. Give them examples of how much savings can be realized by using a professional such as yourself – someone who won’t cut corners, use cheap materials, or need to brush up on all the industry news just to get the job done.

Show your current experience. Expand on how your experience makes it easier to get the job done right. If you can, use customer feedback to prove you’re capable of increasing their results, thus saving them money by having to do the job again (or replace the product).

You’re not going to convince the tire kickers or those whose budgets simply can’t afford you. Nor should you. It’s okay to say no to a price you can’t reasonably accept, and it’s okay to leave behind bargain shoppers.

Some ways to impart your value to potential clients:

  • Testimonials from satisfied clients
  • Statement of work that outlines what the price entails (for example: two revisions, all rights, two phone conversations … the more details the better)
  • Smart questions on your website and in your initial consultation
  • Lists of projects you’ve completed (websites, white papers, research reports…)
  • List of the types of clients you work with (or the client’s names, if you’re able)

It doesn’t hurt to mention how you’ve been called in to clean up after writers who weren’t experienced enough in the project to get the job done right.

Writers, how do you market your value to potential clients?
What one or two trigger sentences seem to do the trick for you?

About the author




  • Paula Hendrickson January 22, 2018 at 11:51 am

    I’d never thought of mentioning having been hired to clean up an unreliable writer’s work, but it has happened a few times. Once a writer ignored a deadline, and when the editor was left hanging with only two days he called on me, knowing he could trust me to turn it around quickly and accurately. Another time and advertorial came in so poorly written than the client asked me to start over from scratch. That proved wise, since the owners of the company paying for the piece said the first one was inaccurate, too.
    And I’m always editing and re-writing poorly written (and often confusing and/or self-aggrandizing) executive bios.

    • lwidmer January 22, 2018 at 12:56 pm

      I’ve had the conversation with a few potential clients, Paula, and it’s not surprising how many who choose on price come back and ask for help. One client I’d parted ways with over price came back in three months with “We’ll pay your rate” promises after what they said was “issues with a number of writers.”

      You indeed get what you pay for, including contract writers.

  • Devon Ellington January 23, 2018 at 12:05 pm

    The fact that I can create in while enhancing the client’s voice in order to engage is a big one for me. Because of my experience in theatre and fiction, I can pick up cadence and apply it quickly. That makes a huge difference.

    I’ve had clients decide to go with a cheaper choice; when it doesn’t work and I have to clean up the mess — the price goes up.