I’ve been using my “You Decide” fill-in-the-blank invoice, for over a year now. In that time, I’ve found time and time again that my clients pay me more than I would have charged them. And, in situations where clients demand a fixed price, I’m quoting them much higher prices (coupled with a money-back guarantee) than I would have before my invoice experiment.
Even though I’ve been doing flat-fee work for almost a decade, I used to (even subconsciously) focus on the time it took me to do something. Now, everything I do is focused on delivering the biggest “bang” for my clients, knowing that the “bucks” will come. I don’t track phone calls, preparation time or limit meetings, and I don’t charge for materials, travel, meals or other expenses. In short, I trust that my clients will take care of me if I take care of them — and they always do.
In 2010, I’d encourage you to resolve to let your clients set your price — at least once. Ask a trusted client to list all the services they’d like you to provide for them. Suggest unlimited phone calls, regular meetings, document reviews, etc. Provide all these services to them for a month’s time. Then, ask them what they’re willing to pay for all the work you’ve done.
You may find your clients value your services more than you do.