Discover more from ❤️ Dil se Designer
Freelancing on a Shoestring!
A Freelancer's Crusade Against Low-Budget Clients
As freelancers, we often encounter career challenges, especially when we've established ourselves in the market. One such challenge is deciding whether or not to work with a low-budget client.
While saying no might be the default answer, there are times when we want to listen to our intuition and explore the opportunity. In this newsletter, we'll discuss in-depth some deciding factors to consider when working with a low-budget client and share some strategies to balance compensation. I have also identified two listicles in this blog - factors to consider and compensation strategies.
But first Disclaimer: It's important to note that the suggestions outlined in this blog post may not be suitable for everyone. If financial stability is a significant concern for you, or you know that your contributions to a project will be highly profitable, it's entirely acceptable to prioritize clients who can meet your desired compensation. The strategies mentioned here are merely options to consider when faced with a low-budget client and should be weighed against your own personal and professional goals.
With that cleared out of the way, let's dive right into it.
Part 1: Factors to Consider When Working with a Low-Budget Client
See if the project idea is close to your heart and something you're passionate about. This may make you more willing to negotiate and find a middle ground.
When you genuinely care about the subject matter, your motivation to deliver exceptional work often increases, and this passion can translate into a successful project outcome.
For example, I personally have a deep connection to music and personal finance. Whenever I come across projects related to these topics, I feel more inclined to consider working with a low-budget client, simply because my enthusiasm and expertise can contribute to the project's success.
Consider if you vibe well with the founder or if you've had a good relationship with them over time.
Working with good people can be a valuable learning experience and help strengthen your network. When you collaborate with someone who shares your values and work ethic, you're more likely to enjoy the process and build a long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationship.
The Brand Association:
If the client is a big name, you might benefit from increased exposure to other brands or high net worth individuals, even if the compensation is slightly lower than what you initially expected.
Working with a well-known brand can bolster your portfolio and credibility, making it easier to attract other high-profile clients in the future.
The Potential for Long-Term Collaboration:
Sometimes, working with a low-budget client can lead to a fruitful, long-term collaboration. If you see potential for the project to grow or if the client has plans to expand their business, you may want to consider taking the opportunity. In these cases, the initial low-budget project could be an investment in a future partnership that brings more lucrative projects your way.
Part 2: Balancing Compensation
Deploy Junior Resources:
If you have a team, consider assigning junior resources to the project, supervised by senior staff. This can help keep costs low while still providing high-quality work. This approach also offers professional development opportunities for your junior team members, allowing them to gain experience and grow their skills.
If you're a solo freelancer, think about outsourcing the implementation while keeping the strategy and communication with the client in your hands. This approach enables you to focus on your core competencies while ensuring the project is executed efficiently.
If the project involves a beneficial product, consider negotiating a lifetime deal as part of your compensation. This arrangement can save you money in the long run, especially if the product is something you would use regularly or could enhance your business operations.
If you're keeping your cost significantly lower than usual, consider asking for equity in the project, which can range from 1 to 10% of the shareholding. This option can be particularly appealing if you believe in the project's potential for success and are willing to invest your time and expertise in exchange for a stake in the company.
If you can't get compensated during the initial phase, consider signing a maintenance contract worth more than your regular price, with the understanding that you'll recover costs after the project launch. This strategy ensures that you're fairly compensated for your ongoing involvement and provides the client with a reliable partner for future updates and improvements.
Another option to consider is bartering your services in exchange for something else of value from the client. For example, if the client offers a service or product that you need, you could negotiate a trade that benefits both parties. This approach can be especially useful for freelancers looking to save money on essential business tools or services.
Testimonial and Referrals:
Agree to work with a low-budget client in exchange for a glowing testimonial and referrals to other potential clients. Word-of-mouth marketing and positive reviews can significantly impact your ability to attract new clients, making this a worthwhile trade-off in certain situations.
If the client is unable to pay your full rate upfront, consider offering a payment plan that allows them to pay the total amount in smaller installments over time. This arrangement can make your services more accessible to the client while ensuring you receive the full payment for your work.
When working with a low-budget client, just be open and honest about your decisions and work together to find solutions. And don't forget, you're only making sacrifices because you're passionate about the project or value the relationship. So while you might need to give a little here and there, make sure to keep your prime position in the offer. After all, you're worth it!
Well that’s all about low budget clients! Tired of scraping by with low-budget clients? Want to attract some big spenders?
Well, buckle up, because I'm about to drop some knowledge. The secret to attracting high-paying clients lies in two things: social proof and proof of work.
And if you want to get your hands on some of that sweet, sweet moolah, you need to check out Rivista. It's the ultimate solution to all your client-attraction woes!
Until next time, this is Abhishek signing off.