If you are a photographer, videographer, writer, designer, or some other creative services freelancer, then chances are you have struggled with questions on pricing creative services.

No matter what stage you are in your business, pricing is a continual challenge. 

There are so many reasons why this is a struggle. And…if you don’t get the pricing right, it can be almost impossible to build and grow a long-term sustainable creative business.

Knowing how to price your creative freelancing services means you can:

  • Connect the value you are providing with the right offer
  • Design offers to deliver at a price point that’s going to help your overall business
  • Align your pricing with what your customers are willing to pay for

Two People with Pens Pointed at Paper Documents - Business of Creativity Article on Pricing ServicesWhat Are You Really Selling? 

We think we might be selling our deliverables. We think what we’re selling are JPEGs or dot EPS files or word counts. But in fact, that’s not what we’re selling. That’s the form in which what we sell comes. 

We have to be mindful of our deliverables, but what we are really selling is the difference that our creative services make to our clients.

Consumers will pay more if they perceive the benefits they receive to be of higher value than the price you charge. 

Whether they are consumers and individuals or businesses and entrepreneurs, the value that you provide to your clients is what they’re paying for – not just the deliverables. 

Designing your compelling offer is what connects the value that you are providing in your services to the price that aligns with what your customers perceive as valuable. 

If you’re struggling with this, start with getting crystal clear on what those services are and then explore what the value is for who you’re providing it to.

Woman Creating a Digital Slogan - Business of Creativity Article on Pricing ServicesHow Will You Package Your Services? 

The first challenge in deciding how to price your compelling offer is figuring out what form or package you are going to package it in. And this is often referred to as a pricing model or a sales model. 

If you are a photographer, maybe you are looking at setting up your photography services as custom quotes for day rates, or maybe you’re thinking about having different headshot packages; small, medium, and large headshot packages or wedding packages.

Maybe you are a graphic designer and you’re thinking about doing just a logo package. 

Or maybe you’re thinking about doing custom quoting for your design work.

Each time you think about how you are going to package your offers, you have an opportunity to design those offers with intention, design those offers to maximize your value, and design those offers to deliver at a price point that’s going to help your business overall.

Face Hovering Over Paper Sheet with Pencil in Hand - Business of Creativity Article on Pricing ServicesWhy is Pricing Confusing?

The next step in pricing your creative services that also make things challenging and confusing is that we are often trying to make multiple different pricing decisions all at once. We may or may not realize that these are different pricing decisions. 

You may have heard, as a creative freelancer, that you need to know your costs and make sure that you price enough over them to profit.


You also may have heard that you need to do research about other people in the marketplace who offer similar services, like what are they charging… and then you need to price yourself competitively. True.

You may have heard that if you are new to an industry or new to a marketplace, you may need to adjust your pricing and come in at a lower pricing level. This would allow you to either penetrate the market or to be able to acknowledge and reflect your skill level in your pricing. Sure, that’s true too.

There are so many ‘should’s around it that it can be very challenging to figure out which one matters to you. Which pricing model, pricing strategy, revenue collection strategy, and sales strategy actually apply to you and your business?

Read How to price creative services – Part Two

One of the things that I help my clients do is guide them in navigating through all of those different decisions and selecting which of these things matters to them and their business.

I help you identify the things that are going to help you price your creative services so that you can build a long-term, sustainable, and profitable business.

There are two ways that I can help you price your creative services for a profit with confidence. 

The first is in one of our Price for Profit workshops. If you can’t wait until the next one starts or feel like your situation or services might be unique, you can always book a strategy call with me. Some of the decisions we talk about are the different pricing models, when to use packages, and when to use custom quoting. 

We learn about different pricing strategies, like when should you offer a lower-priced offer or give people special discounts or special rates, or when should you have promotional rates for your business?

Strategy calls are free 45 to 60-minute conversations where I give you some coaching and strategy ideas for an area of your creative business that is challenging for you right now. There is nothing to do to ‘get ready’. I meet you where you are at to help guide you to where you want to go. Book your call today