Most designers think that when they start their business that they have to learn more, do more, or be more experienced before they earn big design fees and work on high end jobs.
Why does his happen? Well, because we sometimes get hooked into repeating a variety of untrue statements to ourselves that we eventually make true for ourselves.
Have you ever heard these statements before?
“I love design so much that I feel guilty charging for it – I’m just having fun.”
- “Design is really easy for me, I am sure anyone can do it. Why would someone pay me a lot of money to do this?”
- “I always find something wrong with my work! There’s always something that could have been done better, so I can’t start charging more until I get it right.”
- “I want good design to be available for everyone, so if I raise my prices I’ll end up excluding someone who wants and needs me.”
- “People aren’t going to pay me that much, all I get are cheap clients.”
- “If I charge my client more then I will have to do more for them and I don’t have any more me left to give.”
There’s more but I think you get the idea. All these inner game stories and statements we tell ourselves are completely untrue and damaging to our ultimate success!
What is the worst part of all this? These statements set you up to wait a very long time and work very hard before increasing your rates, when in reality you’re probably ready for bigger and better paying jobs right now.
Here is the truth…
Your ability to transform spaces, and the lives of those who live in them, is astounding! Just think of the last client you had who jumped up and down over their new living room saying, “I don’t believe I live here” and “I can’t believe this is my home!”
You’re worth every penny you’re paid and more if you package your work and self properly.
Apply these tips and you’ll start attracting better clients almost immediately:
1. Start connecting to just a few people every month and make your high end offers instead of filling your time with lots of little time eating jobs.
It’s the same amount of work and energy to sell something inexpensive as it is to sell something with a big price tag. And working with people who are struggling financially usually doesn’t really help anyone and it always causes headaches that you just don’t need.
2. You don’t need to get way out of your comfort zone to start raising your fees.
Just raise them up a bit and re-evaluate your fees after a few months to make another adjustment.
Raising your fees is more about your inner game and how you feel about it than what clients are “expecting”. You’ll be surprised at how easily your clients accept the increase, and I say this with complete confidence because I’ve seen it happen over and over again.
3. Accept that you are providing clients with the amount of work and talent “required” for a higher paying job!
We often worry about our integrity when we start charging more for our time and skills. It sometimes comes from feeling like we should somehow know more, be better, or give more to the client because we’re charging a higher fee.
This is simply not true and the sooner you accept that, the sooner you’ll get paid what you’re really worth!
In the end, all you need to do is provide all expectations in your Letter of Agreement to have happy clients and provide value. Check out previous articles about what to include and how to write your Letter of Agreement to get paid!
Working on your inner game can be difficult because you’re creating new ways of thinking in order to prepare for the future. But by starting today, you’ll be ready to live your dreams tomorrow.