Experiments With Hope - Episode 16: Getting Paid Well
NOTE: This episode was recorded on October 15h, 2018 and moved from YouTube on January 14th, 2021.
New freelance writers often ask me how to find high-paying freelance writing jobs. As if that's all there is to it. The truth is, if you want to be paid what you're worth, you have to stop thinking about high-paying jobs and start thinking about the kind of clients you want to work with. This is not just a semantic distinction. How well a client pays you has less to do with how much money they have, and much, much more to do with their personal axiology. By "Axiology," I mean how your prospective clients determine the value of things. Especially your services as a freelance writer.
In my coaching experience, I've found that even millionaires and billionaires often complain about how expensive things are. Many of them are unwilling to pay what a product or service is really worth. Not because they can't afford it. Rather, because of how they value the product or service. Case in point. Some people simply don't understand how valuable your writing services are and most of them don't even want to understand. They just want to pay as little as possible to get the job done. Ironically, some of these same people will blow tens of thousands of dollars on website design services that I could easily knock out in a week or two.
No amount of marketing will persuade these people to pay you well because you're ultimately trying to change their personal beliefs. Even psychologists have a hard time doing that, and they often have months of one-on-one sessions and the patient's compliance in trying to make these changes. You're better off targeting clients who are predisposed to pay good money for writing services. I admit that these people are hard to find. But, you have to start by refusing to waste your time with clients who don't understand...
What Constitutes Good Writing.
What Rates Good Writing is Worth.
Over the years, I've developed a knack for discerning how a client might answer these questions. It's not easy. But it's a skill you can learn. But you have to stop thinking about how to find high-paying freelance writing jobs, and start thinking about what kind of clients you want to work with, and where you're most likely to find them. Most importantly, you have to understand how to communicate with them so that they recognize YOU as a writer worth paying good money for.
In my experience, most freelance writers are in flat out denial about this last point. They assume that they're already worth a certain rate and that it's just a matter of finding someone who has the money to pay them what they're worth. These writers will never make more than a mediocre living because they're too outwardly focused. That is to say, they're so focused on how to find high-paying freelance writing jobs, they never think about how to BECOME a freelance writer who is worth paying high rates for, who knows how to communicate with high-quality clients, and (most importantly) believes in their heart that they deserve to be well paid for their work.
This last point is essential. People who pay good money for writing services will quickly recognize someone who either isn't worth higher rates or who secretly doesn't believe that they're worth those rates. Don't just assume you've got this handled. It's easy to tell yourself that. But if you're not already attracting high-quality clients, or if you're finding them, but failing to get them to work with you, it's not your clients that need to change. It's your mindset, and your behaviors. That's what I talk about in this podcast.
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