How copywriters charge for consulting

Expert - Concept with Magnifying Glass.Do you have a “rate” for consulting?

Do you even have consulting on your list of services?

According to the 2014 Freelance Copywriters Fee & Compensation Survey™, 32.3% of respondents report that they charge more for consulting services than they do for their copywriting.

However, results indicates that most copywriters charge the same hourly rate for consulting as they do for writing… while 11.3% charge more than $200 per hour, with 1.1% of those respondents reporting that they charge north of $500 per hour.

Yikes! $500 per hour?” you might be saying. How the heck do you get $500 per hour?

Well, it goes without saying that you must bring a lot to the table… you must know how to get leads, or sales, or achieve a goal that impacts the bottom line.

One way to swing a higher hourly rate for consulting is to “bundle it.” Let’s say the client wants your very valuable advice but doesn’t know if he’ll being moving forward.

You can offer a couple hours of consulting for $500 and knock it off the much bigger project fee if the client wants to proceed.

Of course, everything is relative. The highest consulting fee I’ve ever heard of is $1,500 per hour. This comes from Tina Lorenz, whom I interviewed at length for an audio a couple of years ago.

She works with the millionaire Internet entrepreneurs who have very large lists and big paydays. A typical job for her is about $40,000. And she sometimes does apply the consulting fee against the job, itself.

Fifteen hundred sounds like a lot… but it’s not all gravy. Tina admits that a lot of work goes into the consultation beforehand.

She might have to do some research. Ask the right questions and analyze the answers. Anticipate, and prepare. Because the bottom line is… that $1,500 consultation better pay off!

When it comes to charging higher prices for consulting, the goal should always be to “wow” the client.

At the higher price, the client is now putting his faith in you. So you’ll want to do more than just fulfill your promise… you’ll want the client to walk away thinking he got a great deal. And that usually means some upfront preparation.

Finally, you won’t get much consulting if it isn’t even listed on your Services page. After 10 years of coaching copywriters full time, I can tell you that clients read that page and they react to what’s on it.

So if consulting is missing from your line up, add it now. And push it in your LinkedIn profile, Tweets and other marketing.

Consulting can elevate your status… and your income.

© 2016 Chris Marlow, All Rights Reserved

P.S. — Pricing and Positioning are two of the most important elements for success as a freelance copywriter. The S.S. Treasure Hunt helps you with both in ways you won’t find anywhere else. This membership site site gives you everything you need to succeed and nothing more. No bright shiny objects… just a straight path to your goal.

About Chris Marlow

The original copywriter's coach, Chris Marlow has worked with copywriters since 2003. Her acclaimed Marlow Marketing Method™ Client Acquisition Course has produced hundreds of successful copywriters. Chris' S.S. Treasure Hunt membership site not only houses this course but four more on the subjects of Copywriting, Advanced Copywriting, Productivity, and Closing Clients. The S.S. Treasure Hunt also contains the world's only statistical pricing database for about 100 copywriting jobs. Chris has put together this resource to give copywriters everything they need to succeed — and nothing they don't. Chris is committed to helping copywriters focus on what's important, saving them from the time- and money-wasting Bright Shiny Object Syndrome so prevalent on the Internet.

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4 Responses to How copywriters charge for consulting

  1. Chris Marlow May 3, 2014 at 5:51 pm #

    Thank you Tina, for adding more value to the post. I think you made a point that should be repeated — that it all goes back to your focus on the value you bring!

  2. Katherine Andes May 3, 2014 at 6:18 am #

    Thanks, Chris, for a terrific article.

    I do a lot of consulting at the same hourly rate that I offer my services. It’s not targeted work in the way that Tina describes in her comment above, but more ad hoc … I simply find things to research, analyze, and recommend for my client as we go along with other projects, and they pay me for that work.

    I sure like the idea of making “consulting services” more formal, though. Thanks for the ideas and thanks, Tina, for the further insights in your comment.

    • Chris Marlow May 3, 2014 at 5:52 pm #

      you bet Katherine… do you have “consulting” on your services page? Often the client will be the one to instigate, prompted by what they read there.

  3. Tina Lorenz April 28, 2014 at 6:45 am #

    Chris, imagine my surprise this morning when I opened your email and saw your reference to my consulting services! Thank you for thinking of me.

    The fact is, consultations can be leveraged into a much larger project as well as an ongoing relationship. For example, I’m just getting ready for a second “ultra-consult” with a two-day private marketing intensive for a client.

    This is her second intensive with me, and I was so thrilled when she got in touch to tell me her first consult had literally saved her business. She has very high end physical products ($4K to 20K per sale) in a market that is not a typical “internet marketing” niche, and markets her products all over the world.

    When the economy went south, so did her business. That’s when we had our first 2-day consult giving her a step-by-step plan to bring her marketing strategies into this century with a robust online component.

    That was followed by the next step of her marketing investment, which was to create multiple components of the copy she would need after our two-day intensive. This was of course also a second fee.

    She’s an ideal client, because she went full throttle into implementation mode and actually DID what I recommended. Her company has done so well, she is flying in to meet with me again next week.

    By focusing on the scale and value one can bring to their consulting, it can go far beyond an hourly fee structure, especially when you factor in your commitment to delivering high value and your client’s implementation of the strategies you recommend.

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