Birthdays are a time for celebration and reflection. The day you were born marks a unique moment in your life, so why not take the opportunity to think about how far you have come and the value you have to offer? For me, rather than raising the roof on my birthday, I prefer to raise my prices. Why?
Because raising my prices is one way I choose to recognize my worth as a business while celebrating my age.
As a freelance and creative entrepreneur, understanding what the value I provide is worth and having the confidence to raise my prices is essential for future success and to help me scale. So I'll help you recognize your worth, so you can make sure that any price increases are accepted by your customers, and celebrate your birthday with joy and confidence.
The Benefits of Celebrating Every Year with a Price Increase
I think it's always important to celebrate your wins. I like to celebrate my life and the growth of my business simultaneously because they are both important parts that make up the person I am and the type of business owner I strive to be. I'm sure you've heard it reiterated and regurgitated many times but it really is all about mindset.
A lot of people - including myself, at times - tend to focus on the goals they aren't reaching and worry about where they want to be and how many steps it takes to get there; thinking as this throws me into an anxious spiral of doubt, something I definitely want to avoid.
It's taken me a while to get where I am and honestly, sometimes the Imposter Syndrome does creep up but I've learned that as much as I am my biggest critic, I also need to be my biggest cheerleader. So instead, rather than focusing on where I want to be, let's focus on how far I've come.
Raising prices for my services can be scary, but it's also been a significant factor in building my confidence as a freelancer. Confidence in myself, my skills and the work I put out.
To be completely transparent, I used to charge $25/hr until I had an eye-opening chat with a friend who pointed out that the time it took me to complete a project equated to only covering a fraction of the cost of the software I needed to do said work. My own efficiency and pricing were what held me back from scaling further.
When my friend told me what he charged MINIMUM for a project my immediate thought was "What? I can charge that?"
And the answer is... You can charge whatever you want. When you have the confidence to say, "This is how much I charge because this is how much I know me and my services are worth," 8/10 times clients won't bat an eye.
Learning to be more confident in myself, makes clients confident in me and my abilities. A lack of confidence is an immediate red flag to clients because it shows them that you are more of a risk than someone who charges higher.
I'm confident in what I have to offer and now know what my time, my skills and what the value I bring to the table is worth.
Identifying the Value You Provide and Setting a Price That Reflects That
When you think about the work you and the amount of effort and value you bring to the table, what's the first number that comes to your mind?
Providing value is an essential component of my business — any business really, — as it helps to build a strong and lasting relationship with customers. The value that I provide clients isn't just giving them the deliverables they requested, it's also about the skills, effort and time it takes to complete them as well as the commitment to understanding a business inside and out so that their goals become our goals.
Outside of my skills, I'm made up of all of the experiences being a second-generation Filipino female bisexual designer passionate about uplifting underrepresented communities brings, and so much more. Experiences are equally important when providing value in the marketplace. The experiences I've gained from working with clients and on specific projects have helped me provide better services and experiences with each new project and client I've taken on.
Value-based pricing allows me to ensure that customers are getting what they pay for, while the experiences I've gained can provide a unique insight into how their customers perceive their company. By taking a value-focused approach and creating memorable experiences, I strive to create lasting relationships with my clients and help them create meaningful connections with their customers.
When I raised my prices, I knew I would be turning away lower-paying clients and potentially loose current clients. After learning a few lessons from negative experiences, I've learned that underselling my prices for the sake of some work — the mindset of something is better than nothing — caused me more headaches than having no projects.
There will always be someone who needs my help, and there will always be someone ready to pay my price with no questions asked. I don't know about you but I would rather have quality clients who understand the value I provide.
The Right Way to Communicate a Price Increase to Clients
As you celebrate each birthday, I think it’s important to take a step back and think about how you feel you're progressing in your career, finances and achievements. One of the best ways to do this is by considering if it’s time to raise the prices you charge for services or products. Knowing when and how to increase prices is key to ensuring that you don't miss out on any potential earnings.
When raising your prices it's good to let your clients know the upcoming changes and what to expect from you as you progress. Some clients may walk away and that's fine, but it's important to remember once you increase your price, never go back on it.
You will lose clients, but that just means you've outgrown them and are making room for new high-paying clients. If you'd really like to keep a client, have a conversation with them!
Talk to them about what they need and adjusting that that to work with your price increase; such as taking on less work. Regardless of a client's response, you win both ways.
Aside from celebrating with friends and family, raising prices on my birthday reminds me that I deserve more than what I'm currently getting paid as I learn from each experience and project. Not only does this help me to better value myself and celebrate my birthday in style, but it also ensures that I'm growing at a rate that is sustainable for me and my future successes in the long run.
Rate increases are an unavoidable part of business but definitely an integral part of scaling in the industry and reflect my increased experience, quality service and reputation. Raising my rates is a win-win for everyone.
Now it's time for me to blow out my candles... and I wish for growth, improvement and more experiences for you and me.