Do you feel like you want to raise your prices... but you don't know how to do it without clients objecting?
That it's hard to differentiate yourself from all of the other freelancers out there?
Raising your prices as a freelancer is no easy task.
But if you can write a powerful message, create content to become an authority, and use higher-leverage pricing methods, you don't have to stay stuck at the same rate year after year.
By the end of this article, you'll learn 3 ways you can increase your value as a freelancer — so you raise your fees and feel like you've earned the right to do so.
Positioning Yourself With Powerful Messaging
Imagine you've hurt your back. You're in real pain, and you want to fix it — fast.
You're looking for physiotherapists in your area and you've found two practitioners:
The first one is a general physiotherapist. Their clinic is called "Arbutus Physio."
The second one is a back pain specialist. Their clinic is called "Back-Pain Fixers Physio."
Which clinic draws your attention more?
Which one are you more likely to go to?
You're much more likely to choose "Back-Pain Fixers Physio."
Their expertise is focused specifically on your pain and problem.
Think about how this applies to your freelance business. You possess a set of skills that your clients don't have. These skills help solve problems for their business.
Whenever you're writing about yourself, think about this back pain example. You want to write messaging (LinkedIn tagline, headlines to job postings, intro paragraphs while pitching yourself, etc) that positions you as a solution to your client's problem.
Specificity and specialization are essential to your success as a freelancer.
You might be afraid to specialize because you'll "lose" potential business, but in my 20+ years of experience, I've only seen it help WIN more business.
If you're known as a specialist, not only will you capture the attention of your potential clients more effectively — you'll also be able to charge more.
Become An Authority By Creating Content
Returning to our back pain example...
This time, you're choosing between two back pain specialists.
You're looking at their websites.
Your first option claims they’re a back pain specialist — but when you visit their website, they don’t really back it up with anything but educational credentials.
The second says they’re a back pain specialist — and they have a plethora of content on their website on how to fix back pain. In fact, you found one of their YouTube videos with a lower back stretch. You tried the stretch, and it helped.
Which one are you more likely to trust?
Which one are you more likely to reach out to?
You're likely to trust (and visit) the second one.
Unlike the first, they've proven their expertise. They've demonstrated value.
It's one thing to say you are an expert or a specialist — it's another to PROVE it.
The best way to prove you are an authority is by creating content around your area of expertise. And if this content can help your readers get a quick result, even better.
Whenever you complete a freelance project, write an article about it.
What was the client's problem?
What did you do to resolve it?
What was the result?
When your potential clients read this content, it proves to them you've solved their problem before. They're reading about you creating the result they want.
This drives up your perception as an authority. Those who are the authorities in their industry command higher fees.
Raise Your Prices By Changing Your Pricing Strategy
Now, you're choosing between two back pain specialists.
And this time, BOTH of them have plenty of helpful content.
However, their pricing is different.
The first specialist charges $200 per hour.
You'll have to go in a few times a week. You're not sure how much time you'll spend going there. There's a lot of uncertainty. You don't get a guarantee that it will work, and you have no idea how much you'll pay in the long run.
The second specialist charges a $1000 flat fee. $500 upfront, and $500 once your back pain is fixed. You know exactly how much you'll have to pay. You know that you'll only pay the full price if your problem is fixed. You feel certainty about both the price and the result.
Which specialist are you most likely to hire?
You'd likely invest more to work with the second specialist.
They get paid for delivering your desired result, while the second gets paid whether they fix your problem or not.
In your freelance business, you can charge more if you guarantee a result or if you price your services based on outcomes.
Of course this comes with a “risk” of turning away some potential clients who don’t want to pay a higher fee. But ask yourself, do you want a business with many clients paying lower fees? Or a business with a select group of great clients who value what you provide and therefore are ok paying you higher fees?
We’ve consistently found this approach to work consistently in the studies we’ve done on consulting pricing strategy and best practices.
Dig deep into the pain your client faces. Ask pointed questions to uncover the results they want. Learn the outcomes they want as a result of your work, and charge based on those outcomes.
Client budgets are more flexible than you think. They will expand their budgets for experts and authorities.
Action Step: Take Action & Raise Your Prices
Let's make this actionable for you.
Start becoming an authority and raising your prices.
Here are 3 things you can start doing today to do just that:
Create a more magnetic, powerful message that is specific to your potential client and their problems.
Start writing case studies about all of your projects that show your potential clients the problems you solve, your process, and the outcomes you create.
Get creative with your pricing, understanding that your client is willing to negotiate if you can provide certainty — and raise your rates!
You can't earn more in your freelance business unless you raise your rates.
Instead of raising them arbitrarily, follow the strategies in this article.
You'll raise your prices with confidence and become the authority your clients are happy to invest more in — even if you're more expensive than your competitors.