Welcome to my blog, where you'll never really know what I'm gonna talk about next.
In today's blog I will talk about raising the prices for my productions and why I'm doing so.
If you run a business that provides creative services, this blog post may be of interest to you.
Raising prices may sound like a bad business move but in reality it can transform your business into a much more lucrative and satisfactory lifestyle. I'll touch more on this towards the end of the blog.
During the past 5 years I have been slowly building my portfolios for several different services by offering incredibly affordable productions. This has brought enough work to not only put to practice everything I know, to get my name out there, but to also build a positive reputation.
The downside is obviously a very very low income with high work loads; high stress levels and a big sense of lack of appreciation about my work from both the clients and myself. That isn't too say I don't feel appreciated by all my clients. I am lucky to have some clients who truly appreciate my work and they make sure I see that.
This isn't the first time I raise my prices. Nor the second or third. The truth is that when I first started providing services, I was doing lots of free work just to build portfolios.
As I continue to grow as a producer and artist, my reputation and confidence also grows which raises my self worth. I can't mention self worth without mentioning those who put us down in an attempt to raise their own self confidence.
I still remember the first time I felt any sort of self worth in relation to my potential as a producer and artist. I created a Facebook post that went something like this:
"I have come to realize I am actually a person with incredible amounts of potential. Some may even say that I'm the shit and can achieve anything I set my mind to".
I felt good about myself and had decided to praise myself for all the studying and hard work I had done over the years, only to receive a comment by a woman I'm not longer friends with, who said and I quote: "You're full of shit".
I must say I was naive about the way society operates and didn't yet understand what it meant to be a man in this world. It meant I could work hard for years, decades even, achieve incredible things but the moment I gave myself a pat on the back, I would be treated poorly or reminded that I'm not good enough simply for being born a man; while she didn't have to do a third of it to receive huge mounts of praise.
"I'm raising my prices not because of society standards but because I'm stepping away from those standards and embracing my own individuality. Simply because I am acknowledging my self worth and not requiring the approval of others. I'm setting the focus on professional standards instead."
To give you a better sense of why this needs to be done, we need to look at my income for the past 3 years.
I have had many ups and downs being self employed. I have gone months at a time without work and pay but have managed to stay afloat with only a 4 figure annual income. Sure I lost weight, sleep and from time to time, needed help from family members, but it is the price to pay for starting a business as a self employed artist and producer.
If you know anything about media production, you know that it pays really well. The average starting pay for an entry-level video producer is $36k a year, entry-level web designer is about $40k a year, entry-level graphic designer around $35 a year and over $40k for entry-level motion graphics designer. These numbers can vary a lot but the reality here is that all of the services I provide pay well enough for me to have at least a decent 5 figure annual income.
So why am I tripling my prices?
The answer is simple:
My current prices are hundreds of percent lower than the industry average.
According to the Artist Guild Handbook, in recent years, the prices for the work I do were priced as the follow:
Average Industry 2D Animation Video Cost Based on a Finished Second
Advertising $300-2,000 per second.
Broadcast $175-500 per second.
Corporate $150-2,500 per second.
Educational $125-1,000 per second.
Industrial $150-1,000 per second.
Legal $100-500 per second.
Medical/Scientific Imaging $215-2,500 per second.
Web, Large Client $200-1,000 per second.
Web, Small Client $120-800 per second.
Average Industry 3D Animation Video Cost Based on a Finished Second
Advertising $1,000-3,000 per second.
Architectural $300 per second.
Broadcast $1,000-3,000 per second.
Corporate $275-3,000 per second.
Industrial $135-335 per second.
Medical/Scientific Imaging $165-2,000 per second.
Web, Large Client $300-2,000 per second.
Web, Small Client $325-1,500 per second.
When you are known as cheap or affordable, you get clients who don't have much money to invest but still want the same quality of work for the buck.
You as the producer, still need to do good work to avoid ruining your own reputation, so you end up working much much harder for much less pay.
In order for you to make enough to stay afloat you end up working several times more than you should, doing small productions that will not connect you with higher paying clients.
In essence, it is better to have 1 big project for a client that will pay you let's say $5k, than 100 little projects that only pays $50 each. Less work, same pay. It means you only need 1 decent gig a month with a client that will connect you with a network of similar clients, instead of 100 little gigs a month with clients who will only create a network of more small gigs.
This decision also came due to the damage it was causing to my health.
I have found myself with insane amounts of stress, stomach problems, bigger sleep issues and constant late bills; which only create more stress which then only give me more sleep and stomach problems and so on.
Raising your price isn't recommend for those just starting out.
You need to put in the time to become a credited professional and create your portfolios so your clients can trust you enough to pay you thousands to produce their project.
With that said, beginning in March of this year, I will be raising the prices for all my productions. Some will be tripled, some may be even more.
I will also have to re-write my contracts to fit those changes as well as introduce changes that also benefit the client. As much as I need more money, I also need my clients to be satisfied with my services. I will begin to offer discounts and deals to balance things out a bit. I found some great tips online and one of the best articles came from American Express - 12 Ways to Raise prices.
I know I may lose some client opportunities but I know I will gain bigger clients to fill in the gaps. Specially now that I'll be creating two new portfolios for two new services. I'm still working out how to go about raising the prices on my returning clients. I don't think it is fair to triple the price of services they continue to rely on me for but it is also not fair to me to continue to get underpaid for the quality work I do.
Going back to self worth to end this blog post; Today I know I what I'm capable of, even if I'm not allowed to praise it in public; cause it'll make me sound cocky.
I don't know a single individual that can do all that I can do. Not one and I bet you don't either.
I have seen people like me online but never met one in person. What does that say? To me it says, KEEP IT UP AND DO MORE!
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I gotta go now, but I'll see you later. Mr. Martinho