Everyone has a skill! Whether you picked up knitting in quarantine or you studied accounting, everyone can offer a service that is useful to another individual. Many times, friends, family members and countless other acquaintances will take this service you can offer for advantage.
They want it done for free!
And it may not be because they’re a freeloader or they’re selfish. Sometimes people genuinely believe you enjoy painting so much that you’re willing to do it for free. Since you’re a good person, you usually agree, right? Wrong! You have a lucrative talent, and every right to charge for the service you provide. There is no act too small to involve compensation. Even if you don’t want or need monetary compensation, you deserve it. Here’s how to request it politely to even your closest circle.
REPLY #1: “I appreciate your interest in my work! It’s always exciting to be considered. Please see here for a link to the services and price packages that I can offer you. Of course, reach out if you have any questions. I am always happy to help!”
Pro-Tip: Build a brand for yourself here. Have a website or even an instagram detailing what you can offer and what that’s going to cost a customer. As a consumer, I know I find “DM for pricing” to be a little bit intimidating, so be upfront with your buyers. You have something to offer, put a price on it!
REPLY #2: “This sounds like an incredible opportunity, I appreciate you reaching out to me! My service typically costs $XX.00 (or more). Can you confirm this will be a paid opportunity? I am willing to work with you. Of course, let me know of any negotiations.”
Pro-Tip: This is a great answer if you’re not sure how to price your service, and if the consumer has something of equal value to offer (a shoutout with large following or a new client). Then, it can be worth your while to skip the monetary compensation and find another way to get “paid”. However, keep in mind your business is the prize! You’re the cheese and the consumer is the mouse so make sure you are being pursued.
REPLY #3: “Thank you so much for thinking of me! This sounds like a great opportunity. At this time, I am only able to accept projects for compensation since I am in such high demand. Unfortunately, unpaid projects are not lucrative to my business at this time. I will absolutely let you know if that changes. However, I am open to negotiations concerning price so please do reach out and we can see how we can work together on the price.”
Pro-Tip: Don’t lowball yourself. You know your worth and you need to stick to it. However, if you do have the time and energy to offer services at a discount, don’t be afraid to work with a potential client. At the end of the day, the worst you can say is no! Maybe you will even say to yourself, “it just isn’t worth my time right now” and that’s okay! Get comfortable with saying “no” to what will not serve you back. You’re providing, so be provided!
REPLY #4: “Thanks so much for reaching out to my business! Usually, I charge a fee for this service so I won’t be able to offer much without compensation. You’re more than welcome to check out my page (website, or instagram) to book a formal consultation with me where we can discuss the details. I look so forward to hearing from you!”
Pro-Tip: This is a great response once you have an established business and people start trying to reach out for “just a word of advice”. If you feel so, of course offer what resources you can. However, if someone is inquiring further---Don’t be scammed. Your knowledge, connections, and research are worthy so do not be afraid to put a price on that! You’re worth it.
Get out there and put a price on your talents. Someone is looking for exactly what you’re offering!