Charge More by Trying The Audit Proposal Method

It can be intimidating to charge more as a freelancer. There are so many doubts racing through your head asking the following unhelpful questions:

  1. Am I worth this?
  2. Will they go to a cheaper competitor?
  3. Will I lose the client?

In a world where many companies could buy services on the cheap on freelancing sites like Fiverr, Upwork, and Freelancer, it can be terrifying to charge more.

Here’s a simple trick that I’ve used multiple times to charge more. It all comes down to your proposal.

The Problem with Proposals

When a new client approaches us, it can be intimidating to figure out the right amount to charge for the value you are providing.

First, take a deep breath and realize that is an impossible task when you don’t know anything about the company!

How are you supposed to give an accurate quote that is valuable to the client and yourself when you don’t know more than 30 minutes.

Trust me, this puts an incredible amount of pressure on you that is unnecessary.

We usually think of a proposal as a 3-hour portfolio and pricing document we do free of charge to convince the client to choose us.

Now, you are in a horrible position because you put 3 hours of work into a document that a client may skim.

It may also come off as templatized and without care which could cost you the deal.

Here’s the answer:

Charge for the proposal.

Charge More by Conducting an “Audit”

It’s time to step on the brakes and breathe.

Let go of all that tension you feel of whether a client will choose you or not.

Next time a client asks for a proposal, change the conversation to an “Audit”.

Explain clearly to the client that it is impossible for you to create a quote off of the very little information you’ve been given without seeing a clear view of their business.

From there, mention that you typically start relationships off with a “CRM Audit”, “Ads Audit”, “Funnel Audit”, or “Brand Audit” to discover the opportunities for the company.

This will do a couple of things for you:

  1. You won’t be a commodity
  2. You qualify the prospect
  3. You raise your prices accidentally
  4. You are a trusted consultant, not just a do-er.

Avoid Being a Commodity

As a freelancer, there will always be someone ready to steal your client at a lower price.

If your client jumps for the cheapest vendor, they probably:

  1. Weren’t a great client
  2. Will be back later when the other vendor fails

By charging for your ideas, not just your work, you set yourself apart from every other contractor around.

In fact, clients will be paying for your way of doing things, not just the elbow grease.

This positions you as a highly valued expert, rather than a replaceable freelancer.

If a client follows through working with you on this audit, they will view you as a qualified expert, not a commodity.

Qualify the Prospect

Not every prospect is a great client. Learning this cruel truth will lead you to success much faster.

If a client isn’t willing to pay you for your input on the problems and solutions you are providing, they probably don’t value you enough, value the solution enough, and will underpay you.

On the contrary, a client that pays for your audit cares deeply about your expertise and is willing to invest to get the problem solved.

These clients help you build a strong foundation for your business and you can keep them for years rather than one project cycle.

Anchor Your Worth & Charge More

The amazing part of the audit process is that it immediately anchors your price much higher than what you would charge otherwise.

When I use this tactic, I will often charge the audit for what I used to charge to do the project.

This sets a barrier to entry that qualifies the client but also ensures they understand my worth.

The added benefit is that now, I can charge 3 times my old price to follow through on the project.

This is a surefire way to charge more than what you are currently charging as a freelancer.

Charge More to Consult, Not Contract

As a freelancer, you don’t always want to be stuck in contracting mode. I personally am incredible at implementation and I even tire of it sometimes.

Having the option to sell expertise and advice will change how you look at services.

You will feel more confident in your expertise and be able to sell it more in the future.

The audit is the first step to moving into consulting rather than contracting, but it can have a major impact on your career as a freelancer.

Conclusion on the Audit Method

You are worth charging more. You just need to take the leap of faith to find the client that will invest in your expertise.

Test the audit method out and see how much more you can charge with it.

I bet it will give you a greater perspective on your worth and renewed confidence as a contractor. Email me back when it works and how much it increased your value!

Unsure about your next step? Let's chat!

Schedule a 30-minute call with me to discover what your next step is. Whether you are looking to start freelancing or starting a new role, I’m happy to lend an ear and help you grow your marketing technology career.