Write From Home
P.O. Box 4145
Hamilton, NJ 08610
E-mail: kim @ writefromhome.com
If You get
Frustrated—Make It Profitable!
by Brian S. Konradt of BSK Communications
Some clients are just plain difficult to
work with—and it's not your fault. But it winds up to be your
problem. One day you will meet the "client from hell" who
pushes for unreasonable deadlines, has poor communication quality when
it comes to explaining what exactly needs to be done, and will vent his
anger or frustration out on you if a job isn't up to his standards.
("Rewrites" do not exist according to this type of client—he expects perfect copy on the first shot.)
One way to remedy your frustration when working with a client from hell
is to charge more. You have every right to. I call this the Frustration
Fee. It's a better alternative than turning down an assignment that will
pay your next bill—and besides, the experience will help you work
more effectively with other types of difficult clients.
How much more should you charge for your services depends on the
situation—and what you feel like charging. Some freelancers charge
an additional $5 per hour or add a fixed percent—like 20%—to the
total bill. Here's when you should charge the Frustration Fee:
- A client whom you have already done an assignment or project for and
you know he or she is difficult to work with.
- A client who wants you to redo another freelance writer's work
because it's unsuitable from the client's point of view.
- A client who pushes for an unreasonable deadline. If you're going to
be up nights working on an assignment or project, you better make the
client pay for your extra stress and effort.
- A client who needs you for an assignment or project immediately —
but you are already exceeding your workload. Make the client pay more if
you're going to have to find time or work at odd hours of the day.
The Frustration Fee is supposed to help you vent your frustration and
soothe your stress. As I always say: Extra pay can make your day more
Besides, charging more makes you more willing to accommodate difficult
clients. Instead of calling it the Frustration Fee, maybe it should be
renamed to the "Client Accommodation Fee" — after all, a
copywriting business ought to be built with the client first in mind.
is the owner and operator of FreelanceWriting.Com (http://www.freelancewriting.com),
a web site dedicated to help writers master the business and creative
sides of freelance writing. Mr. Konradt is also the principal of BSK
Communications & Associates, a communications/publishing business in
New Jersey, which he established in 1992.
New to freelance writing?
this informative article.
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