Pricing yourself and your photography

Pricing yourself and your work can be a difficult consideration, but there are some good tools and recommendations out there that can help you make a wise decision when you’re trying to price your own work, photography, design work, programing or whatever art or work you produce.

One of the best tools I’ve seen is the Cost of Doing Business Calculator by the National Press Photographer’s Association. Fill in the blanks and let it calculate a basic range. You can figure out a rate that best fits you from there.

Believing in your abilities and continuing to improve yourself is an important part of pricing. I know a consultant who gave an quote to a new client. When the client came back and said it was higher than what they wanted by more than double. He confidently let them know that they will get what they paid for, but if they wanted to, he would give them an invoice for the full amount and after the day of consulting they could write in whatever amount they felt his consulting was worth. They liked his confidence and his negotiation skills, and they flew him across several states for the job.

Johnny Truant actually inspired this entry with his article. It reads in part…

There are good and bad photographers. There are good and bad coaches. Which are you? If you’re good, believe it — and then hike up your pants and price yourself accordingly.Cutting prices works for commodities, but will not win you good clients. If you’re cheap, people won’t think it’s because you’re awesome and they’re getting a good deal. Instead, they will look at your bargain basement price and will assume that you suck. via You’re worth more than you think | Johnny B. Truant.

Besides the Calculator, there is a lot of material out there that can help you price yourself. Pricing is important. Read what Laurie said at Photopreneur.com:

If you’ve agreed to accept a lower price in return for the thrill of publication, how can you be sure that the buyer wants your picture because it’s the best he can find… or because you were the only person willing to supply it at that bargain rate?

Pam Newman gave these five questions that are great to ask when you’re in the process of setting pricing for yourself and your products.

Other references worth checking out on this same topic

Costs in producing photos

Pricing freelance photos

Marketing to Children

No matter the economic situation, the advertising and marketing machine rolls onward and as it rolls it is reaching a younger and younger audience. Barbie has her own credit card and Monopoly has gone away from cash to using credit card like cards. Dave Ramsey would be ashamed.

Electronic monoply

Beyond the marketing, psycologists have been taking note of how these trends to younger subjects are likely to have long lasting trends…

Advertisers recognise that brand loyalties and consumer habits formed when children are young and vulnerable will be carried through to adulthood.

via Marketing to Children.

This trend to younger audiences for marketing is not only because of the financial abilities of today’s youngsters but because they are holding onto their parent’s purse strings as well as their own. Besides that, these kids are forming habits that will last well into adulthood.

According to Direct Marketing magazine, by the age of eight children make most of their own buying decisions.[20] Modern children can often recognise brands and status items by the age of 3 or 4, before they can even read. One study found that 52 percent of 3 year olds and 73% of 4 year olds “often or almost always” asked their parents for specific brands.[21] Advertisers recognise that brand loyalties and consumer habits formed when children are young and vulnerable will be carried through to adulthood. Kids `R’ Us president, Mike Searles, says “If you own this child at an early age… you can own this child for years to come.”[22]

Via Sharon Beder, ‘A Community View’,

Kids will definitely pick up on what they’re taught whether it’s good habits or bad. This applies to lots of things including financial responsibility.

Along with the toys that teach about endless credit, there are other resources out there that teach parents and in turn kids how to be good with money.

Here’s a bank that helps kids budget from an early age. Ramsey has “cool tools for teaching kids about money”

According to a Visa survey, parents are turning their eye to the wisdom of teaching about good financial management. In fact financial topics are starting parent/teen conversations even more than drugs or sex:

Money management is a higher priority among parents, according to a new Visa USA survey. Eighty-five percent of 1,000 parents of high-school students said they will be discussing it with them, ahead of other important topics, drugs (80 percent) and sex (79 percent).

Some great advice I saw for parents was from Disney, of all places… In her article,  Laura Rowley gave some key recommendations like:

  • Create a Dream Jar for them to save up toward a goal or “dream”,
  • Start their experience with Saving, giving  and even selling (on eBay)
  • Develop negotiation skills from a young age
  • Don’t be a human ATM machine.