I have been exposed to a lot of industries, yet the creative one seems to have more than its fair share of clients who seem to want us to work for little or no money. Here are 5 things I think all clients who want to work with you should know.
- We create because we love to, but we work to pay the rent.
Don’t let your clients confuse these two things, they are entirely different - just because you do something that you love, that doesn’t mean you should do it for free.
- We may be creative people, but that doesn’t mean we conjure things up from thin air.
Creative disciplines seem to be regarded as fluffy, even easy, the thing that people settle for when they can’t get a real job. Anyone who makes a living from this, knows that couldn’t be further from the truth - we are creative people doing serious work, just like architects or engineers, clients should respect that gift.
- Easy doesn’t mean cheap
If you are good at your craft then you can make it look easy, that’s the art of what we do. That doesn’t mean anyone can do it - yes over time anyone can use a mixer, or Pro Tools. Anyone can use Twitter or Facebook, but that doesn’t make them a journalist.
- Clients pay for what you know not what you do
Almost the same as point 3, but it takes years to learn our craft, that is tens of thousands of dollars of personal investment, not even counting the gear you use. Clients pay for what you know, not what you do.
- You can’t have good, fast, cheap!
I have a creative triangle, it has ‘quality’ in one corner, ‘speed’ in another and ‘cost’ in another. Sometimes I have a spare day and on that day I may be able to fit in a job at a reduced rate. Good clients may get a freebie when they are stuck. Another time I may work late to help a client out, another time I might have to work long hours and move work around to produce a really excellent job - but too many clients want it good, fast and cheap - sorry, choose no more than two - that’s the deal!
Creatives get a bum deal, so read my lips carefully - you have a gift, you have worked hard to be the best - for that reason your deserve to be respected and paid a decent price for your labour.
If your clients complain then tell them to phone me - I’ll put them straight!